Can You Quantify Effective Ministry?

If you have been part of the business world to any extent, you understand it’s a numbers game. There are sales goals, quotas and any number of things that can be measured. Whether it’s accurate or fair, numbers help business executives compare employees’ worth and give it a value that converts to money that becomes salaries and bonuses.

With many churches being run like businesses (for better or worse), it’s little wonder that elderships begin to want to somehow quantify ministry effectiveness. Then they have a ready answer for anyone who complains or for the ministry employee who asks for more money – either for programs or salary. Unfortunately, numbers only tell part of the story and don’t always accurately reflect the impact a ministry is having on people.

For example, which is more impactful – a youth ministry with 100 students where everything is fun and games and little actual Bible education is happening or one with 25 students who are not only learning Bible, but how to serve others and share their faith and where everyone can see the spiritual growth in each of the students? Is a ministry large, because it’s basically a party or small because the minister has poor outreach skills? See how quickly it can get complicated?

Is bigger always better or worse? How do you assess spiritual growth? What if the Bible lessons seem strong, but no one is ever baptized? Or a ministry baptizes a lot of young people, but the Bible classes are lackluster? Which is more effective, the chicken or the egg?

When we can’t come to a consensus about what an effective ministry does, then any conversations about a minister’s effectiveness is subjected to the whims of the elders. If an eldership is not all on the same page, then even more confusion and frustration can ensue.

There may not be a perfect answer as to what constitutes a truly impactful ministry, but each congregation needs to try to agree on some basic definitions, expectations, goals and any numbers connected to them. Otherwise, ministry workers, elders, parents, children and teens will only become agitated as time passes.

Categories Ministry Management, Volunteer Management
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close