That moment you come to church and see a Publisher masterpiece! [Oximoron alert!]

You strive for consistency and pixel perfect designs, you have a style guide and your assets are perfectly organized until that one day a ministry leader shows up with a printed brochure for her ministry (mind you she even used her own home printer).

And dare I to say the word Papyrus

Oh and white space would be very offended to see such a piece.


Does this sound familiar?

It’s easy to be slow to speak but my face gives it away. Every time.

But I’ve been wondering, is she the one to blame?

Ministry lady has time, sees the need and wants to help. She is not trained but her heart is in the right place. On the other hand, e-ve-ry-bo-dy knows the communication team (aka me) is very busy…

Boy, oh boy, if she doesn’t know there is a process, then I’ve failed to communicate.

“This means I am the one failing at what I was supposed to do.”

As church communicators how often are we so focused on communicating with the outside world (which should be a priority, don’t get me wrong) that we forget to communicate internally?

This made me stop.

I’d spent time in processes, systems and tactics but I’d failed to implement simple processes for the ministries around me.

I wasn’t spending time with other ministry leaders or sharing the vision for communication. They didn’t know what they didn’t know.

A vision that is not shared is daydreaming. I learned that soon enough.

Time to work on a plan to prevent future pieces with no discernible use.

Insert bat signal here.

Step 1

Talk to the lead pastor and ask for permission to create a vision pack for communication (fancy word for an online style guide, that explained our “why” along with all brand assets). Check!

Step 2

Meet with all ministry leaders individually to ask questions about their ministries, understand their heart for their ministry, share the vision pack, show them how their ministry fits perfectly in this system and get them excited about having a unified voice. Check!

Step 3

Send all an email thanking them for their time, getting them excited again about our unified voice and introduce our process. Perfect time to get a design request form up. Check!

These steps may seem basic to some, but believe me I didn’t know where to start.

The ministry lady brochure made it to the crowds. Sigh.

But I was able to get over it.

Having a unified voice with all ministries was a learning moment for me more than it was for the other ministry leaders.

A cord of three strands can not be easily broken.