less clutter less noise

If you work in a local church, then chances are you spend the majority of your time trying to effectively communicate the most life-changing message that the world has ever known. But have you ever stopped and wondered why people aren’t getting that message?

In church-world we most often excuse such things away by complaining about how we don’t have the financial resources that the big church down the street does. As a result there’s no way we can keep pace with their level of excellence, their billboards, mailers, websites, brochures, videos, promotional campaigns, and gobs of print media that they seemingly pump out every week.

I don’t think I’ve ever met a church staff member who would turn their nose up at the idea of having more resources to do their job. But, what if I told you that money won’t solve your communication problems? What I told you that there are real practical solutions and proven strategies that you can learn and implement that will cut through the clutter and crystallize your message?

In “Less Clutter. Less Noise. Beyond Bulletins, Brochures, and Bake Sales,” author Kem Meyer provides readers with practical steps, thought provoking questions, exercises to work through with your team, great lists, concrete real life examples, and compelling, compact, and transferable ideas. More than just a book about communication, this is a book about leading people to understand and embrace the greatest message the world has ever known. Simply put this is one of those books that you should have your whole staff read.

Here are some of my favorite quotes and ideas from the book that had an impact on me:

“Good communication is not so much about sending the right message as it is releasing the right response…It’s not what you say, it’s what people hear.”

“Advertising doesn’t create interest; at best, it creates awareness. And, that is not always a good thing. Cancer has awareness, and nobody wants that.”

“No one is immune an outsider’s perspective. It doesn’t matter if your ministry is progressive and contemporary, traditional and conservative, or relevant and real – we all have insiders that get in the way of outsiders experiencing Jesus.”

“…reach fewer people more times…”

“…what are you willing to do to learn about people who don’t see things the way you do?”

“The problem with communication is the illusion that it has been accomplished.”

“Spin is selfish manipulation for personal gain. Framing is selfless, requiring you to step out of the frame to look at the whole picture for the benefit of others.”

“Everything that touches your audience sends a message.”

“Enhancing productivity means embracing simplicity.”

“There is something bad about size and complexity. The more complex things are, the more fragile they are. If you have a stone, you can bang it. No problem. As soon as you play mousetrap, if any link in the chain is off, the whole system stops. Remember, simplify the problem. Don’t complicate the solution.”

“Your church has a message. A message of truth, hope and purpose. But, before people in your congregation or community encounter that message, they encounter your church.”

“It doesn’t matter if your music is great. Or, if you’ve got fantastic design skills. Or, if your pastor is the most intelligent person on the planet. If you customer service is average or bad, your church is replaceable.”

“Sometimes you have to trade efficiency for effectiveness.”

Posted in Creative Arts, Leadership

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