communicationspodcast

Mastering Communicating Change in Your Ministry with Dawn Nicole Baldwin

Thanks for joining us at the unSeminary podcast. Today we’re talking with Dawn Nicole Baldwin from Mavericks, an organization which helps churches be more effective in their communications.

Is there a major change your church is thinking about, but you’re not sure how to communicate it? How do you ensure that your messages are aligned and you are communicating the right things to the right people at the right time? Tune in as Dawn talks about the keys for communicating change in your ministry.

  • Three reasons why change falls apart. // How change is communicated can make or break your efforts. Dawn explains that from a communications perspective, there are three reasons why rolling out change tends to fall apart for leaders: People either don’t agree with the change that’s coming, they don’t understand the change that’s coming, or they don’t know what to do. Tackling these three areas will make it much easier for church leaders to accomplish their goals.
  • Two sides to the change. // There will be people who aren’t on board with every decision you make and that’s okay. Help the people who have the most to lose from the change feel heard, but don’t water down plans to satisfy them. Help them understand how the change fits with the church’s vision and how it benefits the church as a whole. Giving them permission to leave if they’re just not on board is a good thing. On the flip side are supporters who are really bought into your vision and have the most to gain from the change. Equip them with tools and messaging so they can help to be advocates and motivate the masses.
  • Communicate from the inside out. // Communicating change to everyone all at once is overwhelming. Look at communicating change as if it were a bullseye and work from the inside out. The inner-innner circle includes just a handful of trusted elders or advisors that you feel comfortable sharing something that is only “half-baked”. They will help you get to where you can have a pretty good feel for where you want to go before you roll out the idea to other groups. Then, your inner circle might be your directors, senior staff, key lay leaders, and high level donors. It’s important to communicate to these people before laying it out to the whole church, giving them the chance to ask questions and give support.
  • The pain of staying the same. // Another common mistake senior leaders make is focusing on what the change is but not why its necessary and why the church should care. Making the pain of staying the same feel greater than the pain of changing is a critical part of the communication process. Many times leaders will be tempted to skip this part and move on to the exciting, feel-good part of where they’re going. Help your people first understand why things can’t stay the way they are.
  • Get everyone involved. // Once they have information about the change, helping everyone participate in a meaningful way plays a huge role in creating momentum. Leaders need to motivate their people and make sure they have a vested interest in the change. However, don’t overwhelm them with options during the process. Instead, provide them with clear, simple next steps.
  • Coaching with Mavericks. // Mavericks comes alongside churches to help them reach more people more effectively. They partner with senior leadership, offering one-on-one coaching around how to get the rest of the team on board and how to be more effective in communications. They also provide community coaching groups to help participants learn from each other while being exposed to best practices from the world of communications. Dawn describes it as the best parts of conferences, one-on-one coaching, and community learning all rolled together in an online environment.

You can download the free PDF Dawn is offering, The Keys For Communicating Change, and learn more about Mavericks at www.mavericks.cc as well as email Dawn directly.

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Thank You to This Episode’s Sponsor: Portable Church

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Episode Transcript

Rich Birch — Hey, friends, Rich here from the unSeminary podcast. So glad that you have decided to tune in. I’m really looking forward to today’s conversation – we’ve got Dawn Nicole ah Baldwin. She is from an organization called Mavericks. They are about helping ministries reach more people more effectively. They are for a number of resources including downloadable blue downloadable blueprints…(that’s I don’t know why that’s sticking in my tongue today) a focus on specific ah topics like community coaching leagues, workshops, coaching calls, and so much more. Dawn is the founder and the lead strategist. You might know Dawn in this organization, they used to have the name Aspire One. She’s definitely a friend and I just I love talking with Dawn because she’s been in this game for a few years and not reveal, you know people’s ages, but has been around the block a few times. So so glad to reconnect Dawn. Thanks for being here today.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Thanks so much for having me, Rich. I really appreciate it.

Rich Birch — It’s great to see you. What fill out the picture kind of tell tell us a little bit more about Mavericks, tell us about kind of your area of expertise.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Thanks, Rich. Well we, actually you’re right, we’ve been under Aspire One for a very, very long time. And with that we’ve done a lot of one-to-one custom help with churches, um specifically churches that are wanting to go the next level.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Um, but with that we also want we realized there’s an opportunity to help more people more efficiently. And so we’ve adopted ah a one-to-many approach by packaging a lot of these resources and making them more accessible for churches. And so that was what Mavericks is all about, why we had changed our name. We’re offering some new resources. So in addition to one-on-one help we’re packaging a lot of these things so they’re either downloadable, or the community coaching you’re talking about, or one-day workshops, just so it’s more efficient both in time and in cost.

Rich Birch — I love it. Well this idea of reaching ah more people more effectively, that definitely gets my attention. So kind of fill out the picture. What are the kinds of either problems that people are coming to you for, or you know, how you’ve helped, what kind of solutions have you been offering to people.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know, oftentimes the churches that we work with they they feel like they’re the best kept secret. You know they’ve been in their community for quite some time they’re doing everything that they can, but it’s like ah how can we get the word out. There’s so much that’s competing for someone’s attention. And not even just against other churches just anything that they can do with their time. And so it’s like we we need to get on the radar in a more intentional way. And so that’s what we help them to do, whether it’s reaching new audiences, or raising their awareness, or really rethinking how they’re communicating to people. It’s all part of helping them grow and to take that next step.

Rich Birch — No, that’s cool. That’s cool. Well I want to take advantage of the fact that you’re an expert in this area particularly. If when I think of you I think, man, Dawn’s just so good at the communication piece and how do we ah you know, ensure our messages are aligned, and ensure we’re communicating the right things to the right people at the right time. But you know, when we think specifically about change, you know, I think so many leaders are listening in and they’re thinking, Yeah there’s a we either need to launch a new campus, or we’re going to be you know, maybe changing our name. Or you know maybe we’re maybe maybe there’s like ah a change in theological position or you know something like that where there’s like a major change that we’re thinking about. And sometimes we can get stuck just because of the communication. Like we’re convinced that change is the right thing but we’re just not sure how to communicate it. We’re not sure where to where to begin. And I’d love to kind of unpack that today with you. When you think about that, unpack that problem. Why is it that we get stuck there? Why is it that even just thinking about, you know, communicating change just seems to raise our temperatures and get us nervous?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well, you know it is so true. Most of the churches that are probably listening to your show or that we work with it’s like if they’re not in the middle of some sort of change, there’s one probably right around the corner.

Rich Birch — That’s so true.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And how it’s communicated really can make or break their efforts. I can’t tell you how many senior leaders have come to us frustrated because their plans had failed just simply based on how they had communicated it. And as doers, you know when we’re thinking about executive pastors, we’re in the business of getting stuff done, right? And so we’re not always thinking so much about all of the steps needed to make sure folks are on board from ah from a um, big picture perspective. And so there’s really kind of three reasons that we found from a communications perspective with why this tends to you know, fall apart for a lot of leaders.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And it’s usually that people either don’t agree with the change that’s coming.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — They don’t understand the change that’s coming. Or they don’t know what to do.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And so a lot of leaders, they will spend time talking about what the change is, but not thinking about why people should care about the change, why it matters to them, um, how to get them on board. If we try to get everyone on board at the same time, it tends to be a very difficult process because we can’t make everyone happy, you know, they’re not going to all come on board equally. And so there’s some strategies to make that easier. Or we’ll give them a million different ways to get involved and then they get overwhelmed. And so you know that’s that paralyzed, you know, decision making sort of a thing. It’s like there’s so much going on. We have no idea how to get involved. So they tend to not want to do anything at all.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — So don’t agree, don’t understand, don’t know what to do. And tackling those three things can really make it easier for leaders to accomplish their goals.

Rich Birch — Let’s talk about the understand and agree. You know, I I sometimes think people don’t get… I think that’s a really good framework, those three are really good framework framework, but particularly this kind of understand and agree idea, that you know, we sometimes we make the problems more complex than they are. A part of our job is to try to streamline and clarify them. Pushback on that. Is that a bad theory? React to that; you know, unpack that for us.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know, the don’t agree thing. Um, when you have a clarified vision, there are going to be people that don’t think that that’s for them.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And that’s actually not a bad thing.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — As soon we take a stand on anything and say, “This is where we’re going moving forward,” there’s going to be some folks that are like, you know what? I don’t I don’t think that I’m on board. This doesn’t seem like it’s the place for me. That’s okay.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — I think oftentimes leaders will um, for fear of disappointing people, or people are going to leave, they may try to water it down or try to make everyone happy. And my advice would be don’t don’t let people hold you or your vision hostage, you know, um by their own version of what reality should be. There are going to be some people that leave because they are not excited about the direction that we’re wanting to go. Um and that’s okay. Because that just makes room for people who are excited about where we’re wanting to go.

Rich Birch — Yeah. I’ve heard I had a mentor early on in ministry who said, if you don’t have 10% of the people in your church upset at you, you’re not really leading. I think there’s some truth to that, right?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Yeah.

Rich Birch — Whether the number is right or not, right? But it’s like, hey, if we’re not being the goal is not to get everybody to agree, right? The goal is to is to, you know, align with the mission and um, you know, push forward. What would be some common mistakes that you see church leaders make when they’re trying to build consensus, they’re trying to get agreement, they’re trying to get clarity of understanding? What are the kind of low hanging fruits? You’re like oh gosh, once again, I see us making the same mistake. Are there any of those?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Yes, there’s actually two of them. One is trying to get everybody on board equally at the same time. And if you want to picture like ah a bell curve. And if there’s like in the middle is the masses. That’s where the majority of folks are. But on the left side you may visualize people who have got the most to lose. And on the right side you’ve got the people who have the most to gain. Focusing on the fringes, these are your influencers, will really help to motivate the masses in a much more efficient way.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — When we think about, let me talk a little bit more…

Rich Birch — Yeah, that’s good.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — …like when we think about those who have the most to lose, like these are folks that they’re your Negative Nellies. They’re they’re threatened by any kind of change. They’re going to fight you tooth and nail no matter what it is that you do. Helping them to understand how this fits in with the church’s overall vision, how it’s going to benefit them, or giving them permission to leave—you know, if that’s something that they’re just not on board with—is a good thing. And then with those that have the most to gain, these are your biggest supporters.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know it’s going to benefit them or they’re really bought into your vision, so you want to equip them with tools and messaging so that they can help other people get on board. So focus on the fringes, not trying to get everyone on board. But your influencers can motivate the masses.

Rich Birch — Okay, so this is good. We’re already I’m like you’re already getting my my gears going, thinking about something differently. So I, you know, I’ve said in other contexts, count the yes votes. You know I understand with the most to gain, Hey let’s run with those people. But unpack the most to lose. I like I I’ve kind of swum a little bit in the school of thought of like ah just ignore those people. Why do we care about those folks? Don’t… but but convince me I’m wrong on that. Why why should we spend a bit more time with the most to lose people?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Because those folks tend to have very loud voices. And if they feel like if they’re being ignored, they can start to pick up momentum that may or may not be based in reality.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And so I’m not saying you address every person who disagrees, or every single person who’s not on board. But think about who are those that have got the loudest voices who probably view themselves as having the most to lose, and spending a little bit of time on the front end, sitting down with them, helping them to feel like they’re being heard, and that they truly understand where this change is coming from, how it benefits the church as a whole, can really going a long go a long way to sometimes converting those folks. Sometimes they push back just because they feel like they they don’t understand or they’re being ignored. And so sitting down with them, spending some time, can really really benefit you know leaders in the long haul.

Rich Birch — Yeah, that makes sense. I can I can see that. You know there’s there’s something about, you know, it’s like a double whammy – if I disagree with where we’re going, and I don’t feel like I have been heard, or I’m trying to express some concern about it and like I’m a person that has, you know, I’m a volunteer, I’m a donor, I actually help here on the church, I’m staff or whatever, and it’s like no one’s listening to me. Well, then that’s really going to agitate me if I’m in that “most to lose” category. I not only don’t agree, but it’s like I don’t even feel like you’re listening to me. You’re not even, you know, connecting. How how does that, what does that look like for churches in that, you know, what have you seen some kind of effective practices there for for connecting with those that kind of most to lose, or most to gain, really those people in the fringes. How do you weed out who those people are?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well usually they’re the ones that are going to have super loud voices.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — So they can be fairly easily, you know they self-identify so that does help.

Rich Birch — Yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — But when we think about tailoring communications and tapering it, that’s another part of that process. And so if we try to tell everyone everything all at once, it tends to be overwhelming. Um, and so if you try to picture a bullseye of sorts that have different rings. And at the very center of that bullseye is your inner circle. Um people who are closest to the vision, closest in to what it is you’re wanting to accomplish. You’re going to want to give them more information sooner than people that are all the way on the outside.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — So if we think about kind of your inner circle, weeding out your advocates and your Negative Nellies, there is a great place to um to focus your time and energy. You don’t want to worry about the Negative Nelly that might be in the community or just weekend attenders, because you know, who knows who those people are. But the ones that are on your inner circle, the ones your next level out, might be your directors, your senior staff, key lay leaders, high level donors. Like those two circles those are the ones that it does matter to try to weed out the ones that are having a hard time. Set aside some time to connect with them, whether they might be roundtable discussions. Maybe they’re one-on-one discussions. You know it really kind of depends on the type of change that you’re wanting to initiate. But you’re going to hear from them sooner versus later and sitting down with them and hearing their just their concerns and addressing those is is ah an important part of that process.

Rich Birch — Yeah, how much of that at that level, and and this the answer might be it just depends, but I’m thinking about a change initiative and we’re trying to you know, push things forward. And, you know there’s there’s that moment where maybe as a core leadership team, we’re pretty sure we’re going to make this change. We’re pretty sure things are going to go in that direction. We haven’t really made the decision yet. We’re still wrestling with it. Is that inner circle ah is it about going to them to kind of get their input? Or is it, Hey this is I’m trying to sell you on something that we are already have, you know, decided. And again, it might depend on what it is. But I’ll help me understand the kind of nuance there. Um, how far along should this thing bake, be baked before we start talking to the more to lose, more to gain, you know, group?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — That’s a really good question. Um, the inner circle is usually your taking shape stage. You know, you’re you’re half baked.

Rich Birch — Okay, yep, yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Um, that’s your your inner circle, your directors, staff, key lay leaders – that would be a level out is how I would view it. Usually you want to have a direction established.

Rich Birch — Okay.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And you’re looking for maybe input in buy-in you’re looking for that second level um to help support the vision. Maybe they’re the ones that are asking questions. These are the ones you’re starting to equip with information or addressing concerns.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Your inner inner circle – these are the people that might be your elders, a handful of trusted advisors, people you would feel comfortable sharing something that is half-baked. You don’t want to take something that’s half-baked to your staff.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know they’re going to poke all kinds of holes into it.

Rich Birch — Yes.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — They may have some questions or suggestions to refine the direction a little bit or to shape it a little bit, but you should have a pretty a good feel for where you want to go when you’re wanting to roll it out to that group.

Rich Birch — Yeah, that’s good, that makes that makes sense. Any other when you think about kind of the the rollout the conversation. You know this kind of particularly they don’t agree. They don’t understand. Any other common mistakes you see, you know, making beyond, you know, just trying to make sure that, you know, we we can’t we we can’t just dump it on everybody at the same time. We’ve got to kind of segment our audience, get out and and talk about most most to lose, most to gain. Are there any other kind of common mistakes you see that that we should be thinking about?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well with the don’t understand, a lot of times is that they they are they don’t understand why the change is necessary. And so as senior leaders a lot of times we focus on what the change is, but not necessarily why the change is necessary, or why they should care. And so um making the pain of of staying the same feel greater than the pain of changing is is a critical part of the process. A lot of times leaders will skip this part just to get to the good part, you know talking about where we’re going. And everybody loves to think about where we’re going. That’s a good thing. But helping them to understand why things can’t stay like they are is super important.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — So a quick example. Um one pastor we are working with, he wanted to raise funds for a new air conditioner. And when he originally had pitched it to the congregation, they’re like, oh you know, ours kind of works. Do we really need it? You know I mean maybe it needs some maintenance and they were not super excited. So he he was like, okay, and he let it ride. You know by the time July rolled around and it was hot and it was sticky and things, you know, everyone was super uncomfortable, they were a lot more motivated, you know, to want to support the sacrifices to invest in a new HVAC system. So I mean now that’s like a real simple example. But helping people to see why things can’t stay the way they are, and then share where we’re going and how we’re going to get there is really important.

Rich Birch — That’s good. That’s good. Yeah, the idea of I think sometimes particularly I can see that with, listen I spend most of my time in that’s that second chair executive pastor type seat. I’ve worked with some amazing lead pastors who are great people. But one of the things that makes that person a great those great people is they are so good at defining the future. They’re so good. They’re like optimists. They’re so like, hey let’s go take this hill. But sometimes we’ve got to stop; what I hear you saying is we’ve got to stop and define why, before we can take that hill, we got to define why this hill is not the hill we want to stay on. We got to go. You know, that there’s problems here that, you know, that people, you know, unless they see, hey it’s important for us to move, they won’t they won’t move. That’s I think that’s a really keen insight.

RIch Birch — Um, when you think about you know, then this whole idea of they don’t know what to do next, man, talk to us about that. I think this is so true. People, um you know, it’s like we define the problem, they have a clarity where they’re going, but with but then now what am I supposed to do? What I’m supposed to do with all this information?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well, there’s two things. Um one, helping everyone to feel involved is ah is is super helpful. And so this is kind of it doesn’t mean that everyone is involved in the decision making or the direction setting process. But they feel like they’re taking part of where we’re going is ah is a big thing. And so this is um, what Jim Collins he’s the author of “Good to Great”. He described this as the flywheel principle. And so once it starts to pick up, it’s hard to stop. It’s kind of the power of everyone. When you get everyone involved and help them to see how this matters to them, really it’s great.

Rich Birch — That’s good.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Like Nehemiah was a great example when he was building the wall of using this technique, where he asked a lot of the people to work on the part of the wall that faced their house. You know? And so they felt involved. They had a vested interest in what was going on. They were participating in a meaningful way. And so leaders motivate others to get involved so that’s important.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — The second big part is not overwhelming them with options. Sometimes um as leaders will we’ll give folks you know, 80…485 ways to do something, you know, whether it’s listed on the website or it’s a verbal announcement or it’s whatever. If people get overwhelmed with options, they’re they’re not going to make any choices, if they are given too many. So provide some clear simple next steps for how people can get involved is ah is a good thing to do.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — One other thing that you had mentioned um with senior leaders. When we think about executive leaders and then we’ve got our our pastors, especially visionary pastors um…

Rich Birch — Yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — I don’t know if this is something you’ve run into, Rich, but we run into it often with ah visionary pastors who kind of have a flavor of the month mentality.

Rich Birch — It’s so true.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — They get so excited, right?

Rich Birch — Right, right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — They get they just are so excited about all of the ideas and the opportunities that they see, you know, for what God can do through their church that they get they they have a little bit of a flavor of the month mentality.

Rich Birch — Yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And what I I think where executive pastors can really help um, those that they team up with from a senior or a lead pastor, is that focuses their friend. And that not now doesn’t mean not ever. You know those are like the magic words for visionary leaders and and trying to contain the crazy that they ah can unleash on their teams. Because if we’re not allowing at least 12 to 18 months to a foreign idea to take root…

Rich Birch — Right

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — …your congregation, they get whiplash.

Rich Birch — Yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know they they just see one thing after another after another, you know. So try to encourage them to to focus, allow an idea to take root, and that “not now” doesn’t mean “not ever”.

Rich Birch — Yeah I think that’s that’s really good, Dawn. There’s there’s something, again this is a positive part of visionary leaders, like that in that they’re good at defining the, and the reason why that works, the kind of like “hey this is the next hill we’re going on – let’s go over there” is there is nothing like new to generate new momentum. Like when you do something new in an organization, it generates new momentum. But if we do so many new things all the time then it can be like you say it it can grind the organization down and a part of our job is to try to help get some alignment, some some you know some wisdom around what are the things, you know, that we should, you know, be focusing on.

Rich Birch — So pivoting it kind of in a bit of a different direction, but or maybe more of a kind of a meta question, a larger question. You’ve been journeying in this whole area of communication for a few years, what has changed over the years? When you look at kind of like how has our you know our needs as people who communicate, our need as people who are trying to steer this kind of change, you know, with our communities, what has what’s changed? What’s been like, okay this is something ah, we need to think more clearly about today than we did um, you know, whatever number of years ago, ten, fifteen years ago?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — That’s another really good question, Rich. Um I think that there is more competing for people’s attention than ever before, you know.

Rich Birch — It’s so true.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And so being clear, trying to focus our efforts our and initiatives and our communications is is absolutely critical. And especially with churches, because oftentimes we’re competing with ourselves. You know, not even outside when we have ministries that are competing with each other for the congregation’s attention. We’re trying to give people all of these different ways to get involved and to get you know to grow in their relationships. They just get overwhelmed. And so there’s this like information overload

Rich Birch — Yeah.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And clarity is kind, but it takes discipline.

Rich Birch — Yeah.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And I think that the reason why this happens is we want to make sure nothing is is left out. And so we tend to give everyone all these options, all this information, but it’s just it’s like drinking from a firehose.

Rich Birch — Um, yeah, that’s good. So why is it um, so I’m asking this question, I’m not I’m not saying that you’re that you’re the one that said this. But for whatever reason I feel like, so from my perspective communications is a it’s a professional function. It’s it’s like um the example I use with senior leaders, I feel like more and more these days, is I say to them you know, similarly to say the financial side of your church, when you’re when you just get started you might have you know a volunteer that looks after the finances and then eventually you start to think like you know, maybe we should hire a bookkeeper and then eventually maybe like a CFO and that sort of thing.

Rich Birch — The same is true on communication. It is a professional function. Like you, you need to approach it with an air of professionalism. But it seems like there is like resistance to that with some church leaders. And I don’t know why that is. Again I’m the one that asking – maybe you don’t think it’s true. But why do you think that is? Why do you think there’s like a there’s some resistance to saying, hey maybe we should get some help in this area? Maybe this is an area that we shouldn’t just kind of wing it. We should we should actually talk with someone like yourself.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well not just with me, but with thinking of the roles that they have internally, communications historically has been viewed as a tactic, and when we—instead of a strategy.

Rich Birch — Yep.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And we really view strategic um communications as a strategic channel for connecting people to the church and helping them to grow in their relationship, not only with the church but the relationship with God. And so when we’re thinking about it from a tactical perspective, it tends to not get the attention of senior leadership. So when we first started teaching about this, um almost thirty years ago, you know, oftentimes the church secretary would be the one that would be updating the bulletin or or something like that.

Rich Birch — It’s so true.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — You know, they didn’t really have the skills. Now we have made some progress over over this period of time where we have Communication Directors and folks that do have skills and and the talents needed to manage it. But it still isn’t taken seriously by senior leadership. You know, a lot of times the ministries are treating communications as kind of a drive-through service, you know, when they want to promote opportunities and events. It’s like do you want fries with that? You know and it’s like here’s all the things that we want done.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — And these communication leaders are just order takers, when they really should be viewed more as like a Chief Marketing Officer for the organization.

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Just like the the weekend worship is viewed as a strategic channel for connecting people to the church, helping people from a communications perspective is the exact same thing. Because if they can’t connect to your church, if they don’t hear what your message is, then does it really matter how great are weekend service is…

Rich Birch — Right.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — …if we’re making it hard for people to connect.

Rich Birch — So true.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — That’s the role of communications. It’s so strategic but oftentimes not viewed as such by senior leaders just because it’s not something that they were taught you know or that they think about or it’s not super [inaudible] um, but it needs to change.

Rich Birch — Yeah, for sure. Yeah, I wonder too on that literally just last weekend I was at it I was at a church and I was talking with the person that kind of sits in that communications um seat and you know I was saying to them, because we were talking about some of the challenges they were having, and and I was trying to encourage like give courage to this person to say like, hey you you are the expert in this area. Like you are the person that can help give direction. And like you don’t just keep coming to these meetings with the notepad open saying okay, how high do you want me to jump? Like come and proactively say like, hey you want to, I’ve got some ideas on how we could help you know use communication to push the mission of the church forward. Ah yeah, I just think there’s so much so much there.

Rich Birch — Well let’s pivot and talk a little bit about Mavericks. So you provide a number of services and you know, approaches and helps for churches. Um talk to us about the kind of coaching that you do that the kind of assistance. When if you if you wanted if you were if we were thinking, hey maybe you’d like to have somebody come alongside us and help us with that. What does that look like?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Well, we can do one on-one coaching,. Um, one in-one coaching is something that ah churches have teamed up with us for a super long time. You know whether it’s kind of partnering alongside senior leadership of thinking through how can we get the rest of the team on board? How can we be more effective in our communications? How can we use this to get the church to the next level?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — But we also offer community coaching groups, you know, we call them leagues. And this is where they can really learn from each other. So the idea here is that we’re taking the best parts of conferences, one-on-one coaching and community learning, and kind of mashing it all up together in an online environment. So that not only can folks learn from each other but they can get best practices from you know what’s going on in the world of communications and um the one-on-one coaching that I’m able to provide.

Rich Birch — So good. Well this is this has been a great conversation today. We do have a PDF we want to? um, we’ll link to it’s called The Keys for Communicating Change – obviously is around what we’re talking about here. Anything else you want to say about this ah, this resource? I’d encourage people, we’ll put a link in the show notes, go down there, click that so you can pick up a copy of that. But anything else you want to say about this this resource for folks?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Um, it’s really just kind of a great overview of what we were talking about today. But if there’s anyone who wants to go a little bit deeper or if they want to think about how they can be more intentional with communicating change, you know, I’m more than happy to to have a conversation with them. We can talk about what potential next steps would be, and so shooting us an email would be a great place to start.

Rich Birch — That’s great. Dawn, I really appreciate you being here today, cheering for you. I think, you know, highly recommend, folks, if you’re if you’ve been intrigued a little bit, I would reach out ah to Mavericks. That’s just mavericks.cc for more information. Dawn’s an incredible leader. Super helpful. She wants to get in your corner and help. Ah, so I’d highly recommend her, but is there anywhere else online where we want to send people if they want to connect with you or connect with Mavericks?

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Um, the website’s a great place to start. Um or they can shoot me an email. You know if they have a specific question I’m happy to answer, I’m happy to help. And so just [email protected] is a simple way to get in touch with me.

Rich Birch — Great. Thanks so much appreciate; you being here today.

Dawn Nicole Baldwin — Thanks, Rich, for having me. I really do appreciate it and I’m so excited about what you’re doing to to help ministry leaders to to go to the next level. So thanks for having me.

Rich Birch — Thank you so much.

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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.