How Do Large Churches Become High-Performing Organizations?

jan-blog-series-1-blog-header-imiage

As we continue to introduce more and more large churches to our RoadMap process, we’ve found this introductory content to be extremely beneficial to leaders who are looking to understand what it takes to grow and lead high-performing organizations. Over the next few weeks we will be republishing this series of content in hopes that it will be useful to you and your leadership team.


Large high performing organizations are remarkably self-aware. They know who they are, they know what they do well, they have deep insight into ever-changing community and market needs and they have courage to continuously adapt and thrive relative to their peers. The largest of these organizations show up annually on Forbes Most Admired Companies list.

In contrast, there are the large organizations who used to be high performing.  They often have all of the outwardly visible trappings of success, but something just seems different.  Leadership conversations shift to wondering why things that have always worked in the past don’t seem to have the same impact. It may be that growth has slowed…perhaps there is some staff turnover or reductions in staff.  The organization may become more risk-averse in how they invest in new projects as the focus shifts to reducing costs.  For the most part, people are loyal and committed, but something is different. Senior leadership tends to become isolated and “bunker down.” These organizations tend to be on the path of board member changes, senior leadership change, large staff reductions or merger.

It’s been my privilege over the past 30 years to work in an advisory capacity with both types of large organizations.  In reflecting recently on the experiences with both situations, the enduring high performers regularly use a process to assess the organization’s leadership alignment and capacity to achieve the vision on at least an annual basis.  It’s a cultural mandate to engage all levels of leadership and key stakeholders in the process which creates a high degree of clarity, ownership and engagement to achieve the vision.  They engage the entire organization in knowing what needs to be known and create focus on a small number of high return initiatives to raise impact.

The greatest threats to the impact your church will have aren’t the issues you’re aware of, the greatest threats are those that aren’t in plain sight.

We have created a unique relationship with one of the leading organizational survey tool companies in the world, McKinsey & Company, to serve your church in sustaining high impact with your unique vision.  If you’d like to know more, visit the RoadMap website today.