Jim Tomberlin, a strategic partner of the Unstuck Group and the nations foremost leader in the multisite movement recently said to me that, “Launching multisite campuses is the easier part of multisiting. Managing the inter-campus relationships and the restructuring necessary to accommodate a growing multisite strategy is the more difficult part. Multisite is not for the faint-of-heart!”
He’s right. Every parent knows that the process of making a baby is fun, but once the kids arrive on the screen everything changes. It’s one thing to start a new campus or two. That’s the exciting part. But multisite changes everything. That’s why only a handful of multisite churches ever get past 2 additional campuses. In fact, in their research, Leadership Network discovered that:
“Only 15% of multisite churches get beyond 2 additional campuses.”
You can’t launch new campuses and expect everything to stay the same. It takes courage to restructure and adopt new systems to accommodate a growing multisite strategy. Successful multisite churches are willing to live with the tension between their campuses being both centralized and decentralized at the same time. Decentralization doesn’t mean complete autonomy, and centralization doesn’t mean complete control. It’s a both-and solution.
1. Decision Making
Effective multisite churches push strategic decisions up and implementation decisions down.
2. Accumulation & Transference of Organizational Knowledge
You’ve already paid the dumb tax of learning and leveraging your “ministry best practices.” Great multisite churches take the time to write them down and replicate them.
Multisite churches that get past 2 additional campuses learn how to cut out the redundancy in the organization and develop “central service teams” that serve all campuses (for example: one centralized business department, among other things).
Multisite is an innovation rich undertaking. It’s a nimble and flexible approach to “new markets” where innovation can take place in the smaller risk embracing culture of a newer campus and then learning passed along to more established campuses.
Interested in learning more about multisite? Join the first Multisite Leadership Coaching Network that starts in April!
Posted in Leadership