You don't have to do this yourself. When you have a team, they can do the critical work to help your church connect.
Starting a new initiative or partnership can be overwhelming, but don’t worry. We’re in it with you. This local playbook will guide you through establishing a team to lead the process and provide options for engaging your congregation.
If at any time you feel like you need help, you can always reach out to your Switchboard church liaison. We’re here to help.
Build your Switchboard launch team.
At Switchboard, we’re all about connecting the right people to move the mission forward. And we’ve found there are three roles vital to getting your church connected:
- Mobilization point person (operator)
- Switchboard church liaison
- Early adopters cohort
It’s a simple team. Let’s explore how they work together.
The mobilization point person, or switchboard operator, can be someone on your church staff or a volunteer. This person understands the vision and wants everyone else to catch the vision too. It’s best if your operator has strengths in communication and coordination.
Your switchboard operator will be our key point of contact to keep you updated on how your congregation engages with Switchboard and lets your church know of new features available on the platform.
Your Switchboard church liaison is your operator's key point of contact at Switchboard. Liaisons are here to answer questions, provide resources and troubleshoot as needed. They also want to hear from you about what new features or connection topics would serve your church well.
Not everyone likes to go first. But some do! Gathering a group of early adopters will help you test out a few strategies, and they will also be some of your best promoters to the rest of the congregation.
Take a moment and consider who would be willing to sign up today? Buy three of them lunch and share this kit with them. Now you have the start of your early adopter cohort.
Now that you have your team together, here are strategies for engaging your congregation to make Great Commission connections.
- Onboard a small community group to Switchboard.
- Host a “Find Your Impact” workshop.
- Integrate Switchboard into a missions event.
- Brainstorm potential impact.
Onboarding a small community group to Switchboard.
Being a part of a team on a mission is a typical highlight of a mission trip. But now, you don’t have to get on a plane to have that experience.
Consider inviting a small group from your church to join Switchboard together. It won’t be exactly the same as going on a mission trip, but they will get to share their experiences, desires and goals with one another.
Some examples of community groups you could start with include:
- Young adults who want to use their vocation to make an impact. They may have even considered going into ministry, and this allows them to give back and be proud of the difference they can make by using their vocational knowledge and skills.
- Mid-career professionals who want a fulfilling career doing work that means something and makes a difference. They want to give to the mission from their expertise and life experience.
- Recent retirees who want to steward the rest of their life well and have a wealth of wisdom worth sharing. They, too, want to be more involved in ministry as they leave some kind of legacy.
Host a "Find Your Impact" workshop.
We are all a part of God’s global story with unique talents and gifts to steward within the global body of Christ.
The Find Your Impact Workshop is a simple and reflective process where church members can discover what God is already doing in their lives and ask Him to guide them.
Anyone can download the Find Your Impact guide and go through it, but we’ve seen added benefits when people go through it in community. It’s an excellent option for a small group or Sunday class lesson.
You can find the workshop notes below in the resources section.
Integrate Switchboard into a missions event.
Whether it’s a Sunday missions highlight or a missions conference, Switchboard can be one of the avenues for believers to deepen their involvement in the Great Commission.
Here are two strategies you can use to integrate Switchboard into your missions event:
- Set up a Switchboard table alongside other mission opportunities. Members of your church can discover opportunities to bring their experience and talent to the Great Commission. Your Switchboard church liaison can help with the materials you need.
- Have the missionaries who are highlighted at the event sign up as a Great Commission Organization or Individual on the platform. Then, explain or demonstrate to your congregation how they can use Switchboard to help serve these missionaries, along with others around the globe, using their personal skills and experience.
Whatever strategy you employ, consider how Switchboard can provide a path for your congregation to stay connected to and serve the missionaries they meet during the event.
Short-term without traveling option.
Southeast Christian Church added the category Short-term Without Traveling to the missions section on their website.
This simple step allows your congregation to discover opportunities to engage in the mission right now.
Brainstorm potential impact.
Take a moment to imagine all the latent talent and experience in your congregation that could be directed to support Great Commission work.
Grab a piece of paper and write down the names of 20 people from your congregation who come to mind. Next to each name, write a skill, talent or experience they have that could be used to serve a missionary.
Pray over your list that God would connect them to mission opportunities worldwide.
Now decide when you're going to talk to them about it.
It may be this Sunday at church, a scheduled time to grab a coffee, or a simple phone call. Whatever method makes the most sense, decide now what you will do.