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Help Gaining Clarity in a 20 Year Old Church with Rick Raiford

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Thanks for joining us for this episode of the unSeminary podcast. This week we’re talking with Rick Raiford, the executive pastor at Daystar Church in North Carolina.

Daystar started as a small country church in Greensboro, North Carolina and over the past twenty years has grown to become one of the fastest growing churches in the country. They have two campuses and a very contemporary and casual environment.

After twenty years, a lot of churches have peaked and may start to plateau or decline unless they reinvent themselves. Today Rick is talking with us about how Daystar has accelerated to continue reaching people by bringing clarity to the vision and systems in the church.

  • Let them know how to connect. // One of the things Daystar has learned is that at the end of the day a large number of people would love to connect to the church. But they will only do it if they know who you are, it’s clear how to connect, and what they can expect.
  • Bring clarity in your organization. // Daystar began to evaluate where they had an opportunity to bring clarity, both within the organization, and externally with the visitors to the church. With the staff it’s important to be clear with everyone about expectations in their roles and what it looks like for them to win in their area of expertise. For the visitors, clarity is important in helping them understand the church and how it will partner with them to grow their faith and connect them with the community. Visitors come away with one clear next step and Daystar does whatever it can to help visitors take it.
  • Welcome and evaluate. // A way to move forward is to know whether or not people are engaging in the church. Daystar uses a simple process called Growth Track to welcome visitors and connect them within church. Tracking the numbers of first time guests who enter Growth Track and the percentage of people who take their next step helps the staff to understand where the system is failing and if an area needs corrective action.
  • Clarify for staff and volunteers. // Daystar set time aside to dialog with staff and volunteers about their roles, asking them questions such as what they enjoyed most about their jobs, what they enjoyed least, what they envision their roles and responsibilities to look like over the next few years, and what their perception is of what they should accomplish and how do they know they are doing well hitting their goals. The leadership team discovered it was harder for people to answer these questions than they had expected. The answers that staff gave highlighted just how much clarity is needed, even for people who have worked deep in the organization for several years.
  • Clarify your vision. // Much of the confusion in certain areas really boiled down to Daystar needing to clarify their vision for their people. How can you say in a more clear, impactful, succinct fashion what’s most critical to your organization? How does it influence everything in the church, from the language used in communications to the leadership descriptions for different roles?

You can learn more about Daystar Church at their website daystargso.com.

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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.