Every Multisite Church needs an Air Traffic Control.
I’ve had the privilege of serving in three great multisite churches and to interact with a bunch more through the consulting I do with Jim Tomberlin. This week I want to let you in on three different types of people I believe every staff team needs to do multisite well.
There are a lot of moving parts in multisite world. You’ve got to get the right media assets to the right locations at the right time. Someone has to ride herd on family ministry to make sure that all the googly eyes make it to the right place. In my experience, you need someone who is going to be the “air traffic control” to make sure all this happens smoothly.
At Liquid … we have a wonder woman of a “traffic manager” named Beth Laky. She is fantastic. We literally couldn’t do multisite without her. Around here she is often referred to Wonder Woman because she is able to balance so many things so well with such grace! I asked her a few questions about her role to give you a sense of what she does. [Download her full response here.]
RB: So what is “traffic management” at a multisite church?
BL: Essentially a type of project manager, this individual will often receive and process project requests, collect pertinent information to eliminate false starts, manage schedules, assign tasks and track a project’s progress to insure it’s completed on time and within budget. . . adding a Traffic Manager to a church’s creative process will increase the artists’ efficiency and productivity, allowing more opportunities for them to serve the church’s ministries.
RB: What is a challenge that being a multisite church brings to your role that you believe would be different than if we were a monosite?
BL: While a quick-turn on last minute projects may have had moderate success with a monosite, it was now a disaster to reproduce at that level for a multisite, increasing costs and creating unnecessary stress among staff and volunteers. To insure a timely delivery of materials at Liquid, we needed to plan for an increase in production, especially for printed materials and assembly projects (for example Sunday bulletins or mailings). By keeping a running project list, I’m able to anticipate most needs two and three weeks out and plan ahead accordingly. An example of this might be that we design bulletin art a week early so it’s ready to print and assemble by the following Monday for a Wednesday delivery to all of our campuses.
RB: What would you say to other church leaders who are looking to go multisite about your area of service here?
BL: Invest in a Traffic Manager! Most churches don’t have anyone to fill this type of role, but I guarantee it will increase the church’s organization and productivity. From a creative standpoint, since introducing a Traffic Manager position, Liquid Church was able to double the number of projects our video and graphic artists churned out. That meant not only were we providing content for Sunday services, but we were able to start adding creative support for our Kids and Youth Ministries, as well as package content for Life Groups and Classes for churchwide distribution. Whereas previously these ministries had to handle their own creative materials, the addition of traffic management allowed the Creative Team to lift that burden so they could focus on their areas of specialty, leading to more overall productivity.
If you are a multisite church – you need someone like Beth to help keep all the traffic flowing smoothly. Who fills that role in your organization? How can you free them up to focus more time on project management? If you don’t have a traffic manager, what can you do in next 60 days to find someone?
On Wednesday’s post I’m to talk about a team member within multisite churches that I’ve become increasingly convinced is core to our future expansion efforts.