Being a Clarity Champion on a Senior Leadership Team at a Fast Growing Church with Kasey Husen

Thanks for joining this week’s unSeminary podcast. We’re talking with Kasey Husen, the Executive Director of Communicatons and Events at Crossroads Christian Church in Corona, California.

Kasey talks with us about the importance of having a Communications Director at the senior leadership level at your church. Beyond branding and marketing, Kasey shares how they can create engagement and clarity to help your church win.

  • The role in the church. // Early on in her time on staff at Crossroads, Kasey served as admin to the worship pastor. From her seat she continually observed a problem with announcements not creating the engagement desired, as well as their cutting into the sermon time. Ultimately she was able to bring organization to that area, eventually leading to her becoming the Executive Director of Communications and Events. Now her primary responsibility is to find clarity in all things and make it transferable to the staff to take action.
  • Drive for clarity. // Lack of clarity is a major barrier for winning. Churches seem to naturally drift into doing a lot of things that require attention from the staff, the budget, and the congregation in order to be successful. And yet ministry leaders are disappointed with the outcomes. Kasey’s drive for clarity ensures that Crossroads and its ministry teams are winning at the goals they work toward.
  • Ask questions and speak up. // Kasey says that her primary role as the clarity champion on the executive team has to be fully embraced by the whole executive leadership. They all have to want to provide clarity to people outside of the room where decisions are made (ie – to other staff and congregation). The role of the communications director requires a lot of question-asking, speaking up, and acting as air traffic controller. They are often the canary in the coal mine and see the needs of all of the different ministries within the organization.
  • Part of the senior leadership team. // For most churches, the executive team is the one making the strategic decisions each week. But a lot of the leaders forget that the conversations and decisions being made in those meetings result in the need to collaborate with other ministry leaders outside of that room. Having your communications director in your decision-making meetings can give you an early opportunity to talk through the barriers you need to address to get the people outside the meeting to embrace your decisions.
  • Building trust. // Managing the challenge of what to announce from the stage is a continual tension to navigate. Ask questions of your senior leadership to discern what’s most important to them and what they’ll be most disappointed about if there’s a lack of engagement. Communications directors need to learn to lead up to the executive leadership in the church. But Kasey stresses that before providing critical feedback, first you need to build relationships and trust, reiterating that you are on their side and are committed to supporting their God-given vision for the church.
  • High engagement opportunities. // In Crossroads’ pursuit of clarity and helping their teams hit their overarching goals, the church works to pair ministry opportunities with major initiatives or messages each week. This often creates the highest engagement because the announcement is getting multiple impressions and moving the hearts of the congregation to action in multiple ways throughout the service.

    You can learn more about Crossroads Christian Church at and email Kasey. Or find her on Instagram at KaseyHusen.

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    Episode Transcript

    Rich Birch — Well, hey, everybody! Welcome to the unSeminary podcast. So glad that you have decided to tune in. Super excited for today’s conversation – you know every week we try to bring you a leader who will both inspire and equip you and today is no example is no exception to that. There’s a perfect example of that trying to say two things at once. Ah, Kasey Husen – I’m super excited to have her ah on the podcast. She is the communications the Executive Director of Communications and Events at a fantastic church Crossroads Christian Church located in Corona, California — one of the fastest growing churches in the country. You, if you’re a longtime listener, you might remember earlier ah, that was maybe a month ago six weeks ago we had Taleah Murray on and she was just fantastic, fantastic episode. And so I said, Taleah, who else should we have? And she said, you should talk to Kasey. So so glad to have Kasey on. Welcome to the show. So glad you’re here.

    Kasey Husen — Thank you for having me, Rich. Super excited to talk with you today.

    Rich Birch — Oh I’m looking forward to this as well. Communication is so critically important to all of our churches, and so to be able to tap your expertise today is just incredible. So fill out the picture for folks that don’t know kind of talk to us about Crossroads, kind of fill in that picture a little bit. What… tell us about the church and then tell us about your role there.

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, so as Taleah shared earlier in the the podcast you did with her, our church is about 130 years old. That’s very unique. And so we’re a multi-generational church located in a beautiful area of Corona, which is located in Southern California. Um, and so kind of funny thing, I have grown up here in this church. This is…

    Rich Birch — Oh fun!

    Kasey Husen — …Ah yeah, although I’ve done a couple different roles in ministry here, I have really spent my entire life either going to the school or attending the church. It’s a huge part of my story and I really, ah through teachers at our school and then ultimately church leaders here, discovered a lot of my different gifting. My parents were not necessarily um disciples of Christ and raising me. It was actually my grandmother who said, Hey we should send her to a private christian school. And that’s how I ended up here. Um, and my parents worked full time so I spent a lot of time on this campus. And I credit a lot of where I am today, ah, both spiritually and professionally, with the way that people here have developed me into this place…

    Rich Birch — So good.

    Kasey Husen — …and helped me really recognize my gifts and using my my my gifts to ah to a purpose within the church. And that’s still the same today. For so many people who are part of this church, we are really passionate about the next generation. If you were to take in one of our services online or to come to our campus, that’s just something that you cannot miss about Crossroads.

    Rich Birch — So good. Well this is great, and and talk to us about the role Executive Director of Communications and Events kind of frame that up. Help us understand kind of what does that look like. What ah when how do you describe that you you meet someone and they say, so what do you do at the church. What do you say to them?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, well I can give you a little bit of background on how I got here. It’s a little bit funny.

    Rich Birch — Sure.

    Kasey Husen — Um you know, ah I’ve been in communications now as the Communications Director for the last 11 years at Crossroads. But prior to that I was actually asked to join the staff as an admin to our worship pastor. So ah, you know prior to that, like I said, I had served in this church for pretty much my whole life. But I really had no idea what church staff members could possibly do, working on a church staff for 40 hours a week. No I laugh at that of course.

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — I know most of us are working more than 40 hours a week…

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — …on really important stuff. But I say this because I came in with no experience. But I really had some strong admin skills and some fresh eyes. And since so much of what our worship pastor does is in partnership with our senior pastor, I really learned a lot quickly about our culture. And I got the opportunity to have a front seat to learn our DNA and what was important to our senior pastor, simply by observing interactions that I would see in weekly meetings. One of those meetings included a debrief of the previous weekend service and a look forward to the one that was coming. And at that time we had slated about 5 minutes in our service every week for the announcements. You know, for a talking person…

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — …to get up there and to deliver announcements. And this funny thing happened in this meeting. I observed it for probably a year; ministry leaders would come in to that particular meeting and they would sort of pitch to give their announcement for their ministry that coming Sunday. And as far as I could tell there was really no schedule or max on how many people we could say yes to…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …that would get airtime that coming weekend. So I just observed most of the time they would say yes to all of them. And we all know what happens…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …in that announcement space, especially back when most of us were doing, you know, the talking experience for 5 minutes. A lot of people tuned out. They didn’t engage with any of our calls to action. And the funny thing is in the debrief portion of that meeting every week our senior pastor was chronically disappointed with the fact that he had to cut off time from his sermon, because the announcement time inevitably moved from 5 minutes…

    Rich Birch — Went long.

    Kasey Husen — …up toward 10 minutes.

    Rich Birch — Love it.

    Kasey Husen — And he’d usually be disappointed that one of the 5 things we talked about that day did not really get engagement. So, to my surprise nobody was really making this connection or tackling this problem because there was no person in this seat…

    Rich Birch — It’s all happening right here in this meeting. Right here!

    Kasey Husen — Exactly! I’m observing the whole thing; I’m picking up on all the patterns. And ah so eventually I told our senior pastor. I said I think I can help bring some organization to this area of the service…

    Rich Birch — Love it.

    Kasey Husen — …just this 5 minutes…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …and create more of a win for our ministries where people would actually engage with what we’re talking about. And keep the part of the service from cutting into his messages every week.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — So he said yes to that, and then that eventually led to me becoming what I didn’t even know was a role in churches at the time, the Communications Director.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — This was just all based off of you know, instinct and so um…

    Rich Birch — I see a problem. Let’s fix it. Yeah, I love it.

    Kasey Husen — Exactly, exactly.

    Rich Birch — Yeah.

    Kasey Husen — And so it really evolved from from really purely organizing that portion of the service, to really being the primary champion of clarity on our staff.

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — And that’s that’s really what I would say if I can name one thing um I’ve dedicated my time and responsibility to finding clarity, in all things, ah to make it transferable to our staff to take action.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, I love that. So let’s dig into that a little bit more. How has… so I think there’s too many people that are listening in that feel that pain.

    Kasey Husen — Yes.

    Rich Birch — They’ve been in that meeting, maybe yesterday they were in that meeting…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, right.

    Rich Birch — …ah, so you know you’ve done a very good job, you know, kind of outlining that, helping us understand understand that. But maybe on unpack maybe on the back end, how has that kind of increased focus on clarity? How has that ah kind of changed your approach, or the church’s approach, to like initiatives and doing things and various tasks—all that—how how has that impacted? And then we’ll dig into some of the how.

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, so I’m an enneagram three – Achiever. So accomplish thing… yes, are you with me.

    Rich Birch — Yes! Love it! Enneagram threes unite!

    Kasey Husen — Okay, all right.

    Rich Birch — Absolutely.

    Kasey Husen — I’m glad when people really embrace being an enneagram three.

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — So I’m an achiever, so accomplishing a goal or capitalizing on an opportunity is always a primary driver for me. But especially in church because what we’re doing really matters. And so lack of clarity is a major barrier for winning.

    Kasey Husen — And I think a lot of your listeners will resonate with this, that churches seem to naturally drift into doing a lot of things that require attention from our staff, attention from our budget, attention from the congregation, all in order to be successful. But yet I see many people are chronically disappointed with the outcome…

    Rich Birch — Yes, yes.

    Kasey Husen — …of whatever we’re doing. So that is really what drives me to clarity…

    Rich Birch — Yeah…

    Kasey Husen — …is I want to make sure we win at the goals.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, absolutely drive up in outcomes and engagement.

    Kasey Husen — Yes.

    Rich Birch — Now talk to me about… so one of the things I find super frustrating is, you know, there’s a lot of churches say like a thousand, I—like I I see I feel like I run into this all the time—thousand, maybe maybe even a little bit bigger who they um, they approach communications as a discipline, in like ah in kind of ah in a nonprofessional way. Now some of that is because like the lead pastor, they’re good at communicating and so they think therefore “I should be good at communications.” And the example I use is like, listen when you first start your church, yeah maybe you did the finances or maybe you had like somebody else do like the bookkeeping. But then eventually you need to like hire accountants and like people who do all this stuff…

    Kasey Husen — Right.

    Rich Birch — …professionally, It’s the same with communications.

    Kasey Husen — Yes.

    Rich Birch — The church grows to the place where at a senior leadership level, you need someone who is carrying communications. Unpack that for me. I believe you have probably have the same kind of thought around that. Why is that important at a senior level, and how is it helping you drive kind of the kind of outcomes and engagement you’re looking for?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, well, um, it’s certainly true. And I think our senior I know our senior pastor would agree ah that this is imperative. In fact I talked with him before this interview just to get his feedback on, you know…

    Rich Birch — Yeah, love it.

    Kasey Husen — …how have you seen over us working together for 11 years in this capacity? Like what do you see is most helpful to you? and although being a clarity champion, especially with such a visionary leader is a very difficult tension to manage, he would tell you that he really has embraced that because he knows it’s for the best. I will give the disclaimer that I believe and you know my primary role as a clarity champion, especially on our executive team. It has to be fully embraced by the whole team…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …that we want to provide clarity to people outside of that room – may it be our staff or our congregation. Because if we can’t agree on that, then the person in this role, especially at that level will be chronically frustrated. It requires a lot of question asking. Um you know the ability to also speak up and say where there’s some incongruency. Um, you know, maybe, and I know I wrote this somewhere and in the notes later on to talk about too is um, is that we’re often in communications really well-versed we’re kind of a neutral ministry within the the ministry teams. We’re serving so many different ministries regularly that were really in touch with their needs.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, true.

    Kasey Husen — And they’re really more candid with us with their feedback on things that things that um are articulated well, or things that they’re kind of hung up on or don’t make sense.

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — So we’re often those canaries in the coal mine that will come in and say, Hey I know at this level it all seems really clear to you and it seems like everybody should just be falling in line. Um, but we often have to be the ones to say, Hey here’s where people are a little ah stuck on this.

    Rich Birch — Yep.

    Kasey Husen — We might need to help remove some barriers. And certainly I don’t think that’s the the senior leaders’ propensity. I don’t think that they’re often in those conversations just by design. Um, and they’re not going to get that kind of feedback. And they’re not going to be looking at ministry the way that a Communications Director is. So they can really be an asset beyond even just the promotional side of communications.

    Kasey Husen — And when I talk to a lot of executive pastors um and they ask what I do, or you know how I provide value to the executive team often I’ll hear, well we wouldn’t we don’t really devote time to talking about marketing, so I’m not sure that would work in our executive team meetings. And I’m like, wow yeah I think we need to really help people get a clear idea that yes, there’s the function of communications that often is providing you your design, and updating your website, and doing your invite cards and all of that stuff. They’re executing on branding. But the person who’s going to represent them on your executive team is really looking at achieving that level of clarity for the whole team to be able to achieve its goals.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, I love that. I was in a ah—you’ll get a kick out of this—I was in a conversation recently with a senior leader. It was like, so the senior leaders there and myself and a bunch of other people. And um, they there was like they had this poster printed up with this slogan on it that I I thought was bad. Like I was like this is not good. And um and the senior leader thought this was great.

    Kasey Husen — Yeah.

    Rich Birch — They were like oh isn’t this this great. And I’m looking around and I’m like I think everybody else thinks this is bad, but they’re just not saying anything.

    Kasey Husen — Yes.

    Rich Birch — And so then I said, I was the first one to go, and this is I’m not trying to point myself out…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah.

    Rich Birch — …but this is an example of the kind of thing.

    Kasey Husen — Yeah.

    Rich Birch — I’m like I don’t think that’s very good, and like for this reason, that reason, and that reason. And then and then everybody else piled on, oh yeah, yeah; so true, so true.

    Kasey Husen — Yes.

    Rich Birch — There’s there’s something about having that role of the you know the clarity champion that that’s the kind of thing that you find yourself doing. Can you talk about some examples of how, you know, championing clarity at that level at that kind of senior executive level has made a difference in kind of some of the outcomes? Kind of connect those two together. What would be some examples of that?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, definitely. Well for most churches the executive team is the one that’s making strategic decisions every week. So whether we’re preparing for a building campaign, or we’re trying to increase giving units, or getting people to Easter services, or responding to a crisis, the executive team really is like ground zero for these conversations. But what I think a lot of executive leaders forget is that um the conversations we’re having week to week and the decisions that are being made in that room, they’re going to result in the need to collaborate with other ministry leaders outside of that room.

    Kasey Husen — And so like I said, your Communications Director is often the canary in the coal mine – they’re going to be the ones who are going to see the different needs of ministries um, and we’re that neutral player we consider ah, we’re serving all of the different ministries. So we’re trying to we’re getting more feedback on things that don’t make sense or do make sense. Um, so having your Comms Director in that meeting is giving you an early opportunity to really talk through the barriers that we might need to address in order for people to embrace a decision.

    Kasey Husen — So um, you know, I think we can often experience ah that when we’re in a room like this, we talk about things for weeks at a time. We’re wrestling through these different things and we walk out and you know forget we haven’t done the whole context with these teams or with the congregation. And I see a lot of executive leaders get ah frustrated with the lack of engagement on their staff teams.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — It can almost drift into the, you know, they’re not on board type of conversation. And we have…

    Rich Birch — They don’t get us. They’re not there.

    Kasey Husen — Exactly.

    Rich Birch — They don’t love Jesus.

    Kasey Husen — Exactly. Yes.

    Rich Birch — They’re they’re stiff necked sinners.

    Kasey Husen — Right. Exactly.

    Rich Birch — All that.

    Kasey Husen — And we have to remember that the ministry staff, you know, they are over specific goals and functions within the church…

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — …where they’re devoting their time to, you know, a specific ministry and achieving the goals we have laid out with them for that ministry. And most of them they just need a compelling why behind the new work that we’re asking them to do, or you know, whatever it is in order to fully embrace it. I don’t really ever experience anyone combative…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …about a direction that we’re going in. It’s most often the time that they just don’t have the context that we have sitting in this room for weeks really wrestling this idea to the ground. So I am often the one who’s asking a lot of these questions in these meetings on their behalf. Again because I’m very aware of the kinds of questions that they might have.

    Kasey Husen — So I’ll be asking these questions. My goal is to put together, you know, a document of some sort, usually just one page, whatever we’re working on to really answer those questions that people outside of that room might have. Um and oftentimes it’s ah it’s a worthy exercise for that team – the executive team. You know, like you said you might have some in there who have very different opinions about something. And I feel like I’m oftentimes, you know, tearing off a stick of dynamite and throwing it in. Um, you know that’s kind of my job is to even sometimes take a side of something just to see what kind of reaction I get to know…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …okay, we’re very committed to this, you know and not this.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — Or to at least drive more conversation in there so we leave that room with more clarity.

    Rich Birch — Uh-huh.

    Kasey Husen — Um, you know and and the thing is is the like the XP of Discipleship really in that room should desire a level of clarity also, but their primary role in there is not to figure out how to make the messaging clear for different audiences…

    Rich Birch — Right, right.

    Kasey Husen — …so that those people can take action. So um, again having your Comms Director in that meeting early on in the conversation really gives them a chance to organize that communication. And ah to advocate for a great transfer to others, so that it results in greater engagement. If you want to…

    Rich Birch — Can you talk…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, go ahead.

    Rich Birch — Oh sorry I was going to ask if you could talk through maybe an example maybe where there was a change in direction, or like something new was rolled out and, you know, take us inside that room. give me a sense of your role. You know to kind of talk that through a little bit.

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, so, oftentimes ah you know I alluded to before that we can really be like the air traffic controllers. Um, and so again because the church just drifts into a place where we end up doing a lot of different things, or we’re excited about a lot of different things that once, you’re Comms Director, what I typically will provide in terms of value to this team, is that when we’re talking about a new initiative I can tell you what planes or messages are getting ready to take off.

    Rich Birch — Right, right.

    Kasey Husen — And I can tell you which ones are already in the air. And I can tell you which ones have landed, and even those that have crashed and burned…

    Rich Birch — Oh gosh.

    Kasey Husen — …if we just you know took took the whole illustration…

    Rich Birch — Yes, run it right till the end. Love it.

    Kasey Husen — …ah to the end. Yes, um, so so I am often you know having in those moments to say, okay, well we just rolled this out right now and we have people’s attention wrapped around this. Um, for instance, we’ve got a series coming up here pretty soon and I’m already sensing that there are quite a few people who have some different expectations and goals of our people, outcomes from this series week to week and then an overall one that will continue moving throughout the year. Um and especially if it impacts people’s finances. And you know I’m often the one who’s saying okay, let’s remember practically if we do this for seven weeks um, if we throw out that this is important each week, but then we’re also asking them to go sign up to do this over here…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …you know, what are we going to be most disappointed with when it’s not done, when it’s not when people don’t engage with that. And and we can get into more of that as a practical you know how I ask questions with our our senior pastor specifically. Um, but I also do this in um, you know a little ah lesser pressure with like roadmapping a series. Um.

    Rich Birch — Sure.

    Kasey Husen — So I I get in on the front end of this with our senior pastor, or all our teaching pastors. Ahead of a series I’m sitting down and I’m saying, okay, you guys tell us what you’re thinking about doing for this duration. Um, and then I kind of say like what are the goals? What do we hope people will do um after this series? How will it change them? Then we go week by week…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …and really talk through, Okay, what do we want them to know, feel, do (which came from Craig Groeschel), but just applying some of that even to our series…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …um, road mapping so asking a lot of those questions is just another practical way that we do that.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, I love that. I love the the air traffic controller example I think is a very um is a very vivid example, and I think is very applicable for sure to this. I can see how that would be of huge value for sure. Can you talk a little bit more about… so one of the pressures I think so many of our churches face is there’s this it’s kind of like where you started. There’s this notion that, you know, somebody runs a department or they’re you know they’re involved in something and they’re like if I can just get somebody on the weekend to stand up and talk about this thing. Like if… And and they there’s I know they think all they need is that. But we know that that’s actually not going to guarantee that they’re going their thing could end up crashing and burning.

    Kasey Husen — Right.

    Rich Birch — Bring us all together. Why why do you just to kind of weekend stage promotions not the answer. How does that relate with the planes flying around? You know how has that actually benefited what you’ve done at Crossroads?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, so um, we have dozens of ministries in our church, and we also serve a preschool through 12th grade school that’s connected to us. So every day we’ve got planes or messages that are taking off, they’re in the sky, or they’re coming in for landing. So part of my job is to really protect the runway, and the skies from collisions or congestion. You know? So um, my executive team really empowers me in this role to really mine for clarity around the overarching winds of our church. And then to help remove barriers. For the most part they allow me to determine the best time for these planes to take off.

    Kasey Husen — This took a while to get to this place. So I just want anyone to know who’s listening ah might sound like we got here overnight. We didn’t. It was it was a process. But one process I would give you just practically is we do a ministry planning cycle. And it really just gives us a proactive look at the schedule ahead. So our executive team will meet in the fall, we’ll really lay out the next year’s initiatives and the sermons series…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …and then I’ll put that on a spreadsheet, a Google spreadsheet for everyone to see. But a next level thing is that I’ll also back in promotion. We know it’s going to take anywhere from four to six weeks talking about this thing…

    Rich Birch — Yep.

    Kasey Husen — …to get people to actually show up. So ah then I pass that off to the ministries and they’re really able to map out their 3 to 5 goals for the next six months and work ah with aligning with our overarching goals. So we then we built this culture where ministries understand that they can’t rely on the weekend stage to make their event successful. Um, because there’s limited space to promote things…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …once we focus on all of those big rocks that we…

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — …you know, tackled in the executive meeting and backed in that promotion. So ministries need to detail how they plan to do the work of engaging people around their event or initiative without the support of the weekend stage.

    Rich Birch — Yep.

    Kasey Husen — So if we’re able to emphasize their event at a time where it’s got a practical application from the message that week, or one of our strategic pushes, then that really is seen as a bonus to them. Again to go a long time to get here. And we could not have done that unless we we embrace this as a culture as an executive team. Because all of our executive leaders are really championing this within the ministries that they oversee.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, I love that. You know and continuing to move, I found in the past, moving departments to hey here’s a whole bunch of other ways that you can communicate what you you want to do, and and and don’t be and we can help you with that. We’ll we’ll help you figure through all the different tools that you could use, all the different approaches. And and frankly, a lot of it is like talking with your own people. Like it’s…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah.

    Rich Birch — …like it’s actually let’s actually you have a defined you know constituency; let’s get in front of them in the channels that make sense to get in front of them…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah.

    Rich Birch — …instead of just relying on being in front of everyone else.

    Kasey Husen — And I find that that when they have that responsibility in order to put on this event, they actually start to ask questions like: is this really what our people need right now?

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — And because they’re having to go to those people on their own and they’re not relying on a huge marketing arm of the church to do that for them. Sometimes these ideas get squashed on their own because they say well, yeah, actually we’re not sure…

    Rich Birch — Yeah.

    Kasey Husen — …you know, given all the work it’s going to take that we want to proceed forward with that.

    Rich Birch — Yeah.

    Kasey Husen — We’re not going to get the outcome.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, that’s that’s great. Um, so a little bit in a different direction around the same, you know, the same topic, a lot of what you do is lead up. A lot of what you do is lead and influence the you know your senior leader, but the you know other executives. Um when you think about that aspect of your role, do you have any advice? You know because I’m sure there’s communications people that are listening that are like oh my goodness, I would love to work there. It sounds like they actually appreciate the role of communications. And they’re they’re trying to think about man, how do I how do I influence the organization? Any advice for folks that would be listening in with that mindset?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, and like I said earlier it can really be um, it can kind of be an exhausting seat to sit in sometimes. Especially because um, I understand, you know, and it’s the same way here. Visionary leaders often they have more room for ambiguity than people sitting in this seat.

    Rich Birch — That’s so true.

    Kasey Husen — And so, you know, it’s a tension to manage. Eleven years in I would say we haven’t solved that problem. Um, it’s just again I go back to it’s been eleven years getting to know my senior pastor…

    Rich Birch — Yep.

    Kasey Husen — …and how he prefers to do things, and where we’re going. And often that’s led to me having conversations ah with him, you know, throughout the year. He’s in enneagram seven so he loves doing five exciting things at once. And he really believes that it will all work out. And but he would also tell you as a 7 he has to work really hard ah to fight off the tendency to avoid pain. So in situations where he wants to people to focus on five things, it’s kind of painful to have to tell a ministry we’re not going to do all of those things.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — And so I kind of lead up by asking questions like um, okay if we share these 5 things in the Sunday service, come Monday morning which of the 5 things will you be most eager to see results for?

    Rich Birch — Oh that’s good.

    Kasey Husen — And if you can’t answer that one, you know, usually there’s one that’s like I want to see people do this. Then that’s the most important thing. If you need more questions: which one of these will be the most painful for you if we don’t see engagement around it? Whatever the answer is to that, that’s the most important thing. And then I’m usually able to activate around building messaging for that or even fighting to push off other things to a time where the main thing isn’t going to suffer. But also just you know stepping into ah wanting to remove barriers. And when I notice we’re not on the same page about something, um, it’s important for us as Comm Directors even though in our fight for clarity um that we can often be coming in with feedback, we’re wanting to show honor to our senior leader. But also we’re representing about we’re representing what’s not clear about his vision or his communication and that can often feel like you’re calling his baby ugly.

    Rich Birch — Sure.

    Kasey Husen — So um, you know someone in this role I think really needs to earn that trust.

    Rich Birch — Yeah.

    Kasey Husen — Um, and to to discern like is this a point where I need to have a conversation because my leader is at risk.

    Rich Birch — Right.

    Kasey Husen — And, you know, and and I would say if you know that then yeah, that’s a primary function of this role to step into those hard things for the purpose of keeping us on track toward the goal. But I would build that relationship and that trust and there might need to be some calibration throughout the year because it’s such a tension to manage just to continue reiterating: I am on your side, and I’m for you, and I’m in the support of whatever you feel like God is calling this church to do. And so although I’ll come in with some critical feedback here and there I have an opinion about how something might be done best um, you know at the end of the day it’s your call. But I feel like I wouldn’t be doing a service to you if I didn’t share, you know, what what might be a barrier to our success. So we’ve really worked that tension and we’ve established established a lot of trust over the years and I would say if there’s someone in this role, that’s something to focus on.

    Rich Birch — Yeah, I love that. I think that’s that’s such a lot of wisdom in that answer around, you know, the relationship side of it, and building trust, and there’s you know there’s wisdom there around, Okay, you know, not every hill is a hill we can die on and um, how do we find, you know…

    Kasey Husen — Yeah. Yes, and I like to die on every hill, Rich. I really do.

    Rich Birch — Love it. That’s this is been for good…

    Kasey Husen — Eleven years in and I’m still pumped to die on all the hills…

    Rich Birch — Yes.

    Kasey Husen — …but I have to really really and make sure that I’m being wise about that.

    Rich Birch — Love it. So good. As we come to close up today’s conversation, Kasey, anything else, you’d like to share? Anything else, you’d like to say to to help her guests as we close out today?

    Kasey Husen — I would just say um, you know, in our pursuit of clarity and really hitting our overarching goals, helping our teams do that, there are some really awesome ways that we can pair um ministry opportunities with major initiatives or um, ah messages each week. And I’ll just give one example of that. You know for years we had teams coming to us saying, can you announce our ministry because we need more volunteers for this, you know? And just mentioning that was never really effective and it really just came across needy. Um, so now what we do is every year one of our pastors is preaching on gifts. Um, or they’re preaching on the importance of serving. And so we have now paired the pitch for people to get involved with ministry um, with that service every year, and it’s called Draft Day.

    Kasey Husen — So all the ministries are out on the patio doing that. And we have seen the biggest results from pairing messages with opportunities in ministry because you’re getting multiple impressions and actually moving the hearts of people in multiple ways throughout the service to action, once again.

    Kasey Husen — So um, there are some great ways, I’m happy if someone wanted to email me I could download them on a couple different ways we do some of the major things in churches…

    Rich Birch — Love it.

    Kasey Husen — …to get people engaged but um, but that’s one thing that I I hope people have have some energy to explore.

    Rich Birch — Love it. So good. Well if people want to get in touch with you, or track with the church where do we want to send them online?

    Kasey Husen — Yeah, you’re welcome to email me I’m Kasey, [email protected] and I’m also on Instagram – kaseyhusen.

    Rich Birch — Love it. Thank you so much, Kasey. I really appreciate you being here today, cheering for you guys. Love what Crossroads is up to and I really appreciate your generosity and being here today. Thank you so much.

    Kasey Husen — Thanks for having me, Rich.

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    Rich Birch
    Rich Birch is one of the early multi-site church pioneers in North America. He led the charge in helping The Meeting House in Toronto to become the leading multi-site church in Canada with over 5,000+ people in 18 locations. In addition, he served on the leadership team of Connexus Church in Ontario, a North Point Community Church Strategic Partner. He has also been a part of the lead team at Liquid Church - a 5 location multisite church serving the Manhattan facing suburbs of New Jersey. Liquid is known for it’s innovative approach to outreach and community impact. Rich is passionate about helping churches reach more people, more quickly through excellent execution.His latest book Church Growth Flywheel: 5 Practical Systems to Drive Growth at Your Church is an Amazon bestseller and is design to help your church reach more people in your community.