Do you have an elevator speech?
When a guest after worship or your next door neighbor states, “Tell me about your church,” what do you say? Are you caught off guard? Does your response ramble on about things that don’t really matter?
I encourage congregations I coach to create an “elevator speech” that concisely, concretely describes the essence of their congregation. It should capture the congregation’s mission, vision and values in ways that would be readily accessible to one’s next door neighbor. It should be shorter than a minute and summarize what you hope every person experiences at your congregation. A copy of the speech should be given to staff, all leaders and new members as a template for helping them describe their congregation to others. Recite it at staff and leadership meetings. Listed below is the speech I share with others about my home congregation:
“Our main purpose is to introduce people to Jesus and help them become lifelong followers of Christ. We do this by providing pathways for people to connect with God, connect with each other, and connect with the needs of people in the community. We invite people to connect with God by praying daily, worshipping weekly and taking time to read and reflect on the Bible. We help people connect with each other by offering settings to build meaningful friendships and by providing tools for practicing caring conversations at church, in their homes and in the community. We help people connect with the needs of the community by sponsoring or highlighting opportunities to serve locally and globally. As you learn more about our congregation, you’ll find that we laugh a lot, are willing try new things, and are intentional about practicing faith everyday, everywhere. We believe that everyone can make a difference and can use their God-given gifts to be a blessing in this world. Does that give you glimpse of what our congregation is about?”
Keep in mind that my elevator speech varies every time I share it based on the setting and the people I’m with. It simply serves as a template for sharing what matters most about my congregation. If your congregation has an elevator speech, please feel free to share it with me and others that visit this site.