Has your church grown so large that you can no longer fit in your current space? Are you planning on expanding into another campus so that you can impact more people in another part of the city?
You are not alone. According to a recent survey by Leadership Network and Generis, there are over 8,000 multisite churches in the United States…and that number is constantly growing! However, while becoming a multisite church will help you solve your ‘space’ problems, the process still comes with its fair share of challenges.
Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing solutions to common problems that multisite churches often face. We hope that we can help you combat these problems before they arise in your multisite expansion! Today, we will be talking about vision clarity and planning, along with a general overview of the potential problems you need to consider when planning for a new multisite campus.
Vision and Purpose
Vision clarity is typically more of an issue with the launch of the first multisite campus than it is with any other campus launch. However, the challenge can continue to arise as a church expands into three, four, or more campuses. During the planning process, we believe you should constantly consider the original purpose behind your multisite expansion. While the reason for launching a new campus may seem obvious to you (more space, perhaps?), what is the bigger purpose and vision behind your expansion?
Maybe you want to reach a different part of the city…or have a bigger impact on your community. Perhaps you recognize unique subcultures within your church and want to provide them with their own unique space. Maybe you see your church having campuses all over the city, the state, or the country. We suggest that you keep that initial vision and purpose in focus during the planning and launching period of your first multisite campus.
What is your vision for the identity of each church location? Do you envision each campus offering the same experience and hearing the same message each week? We believe that a multisite church does not have to offer an identical experience at each campus. What they should offer is an identifiable experience. Your vision should be displayed and communicated at each campus. At the same time, each campus should be allowed to develop their own unique culture and community.
You can’t launch a new site without a leadership team in place. The question is…where are these leaders going to come from? You could appoint leaders from within the existing church. These individuals will understand the church’s vision, and they will be able to duplicate the processes that the teams at the main campus put into place.
However, your original location may not be able to spare a whole team of leaders. Your team normally already has full-time jobs. Many aspects of planning can sometimes involve the responsibilities of a full-time role. We have seen multisite churches hire leaders from outside of the church, but we suggest that these individuals be hired several months before launch so that they can spend time in the original campus and truly integrate with the overall vision and culture of the church.
Multisite expansion is already a challenging adventure. However, when your campus will be located in a rental facility, you should expect a different form of planning and leadership to develop excellent portable systems and volunteers.
In planning for a portable campus, you must consider transportation, storage, efficiency, and volunteer care. A portable campus is unique. You cannot simply copy the structures and procedures you created for your main campus. They will not be effective or work in the same way.
At Portable Church® Industries, we offer unique portable systems designed for your church’s specific needs. If you are interested in making your next multisite location portable, we would love to help. For more information on intelligent systems for the portable church call us 800-939-7722 or send an email to email@example.com.