Ministry Branding and Culture: Two Sides of the Same Coin

Your church’s culture is the combined effect of the interacting thoughts, values, thoughts, attitudes, and actions that define the life of your church. At the same time, your church probably pumps out communications all day long but misses the opportunity to constantly reflect and reinforce its vision.

Have you ever considered the fact that your culture and your brand are actually two sides of the same coin?

In her post titled What’s Keeping Your Company Culture Intact and Thriving?, Laura McKnight suggests that organizations should “[make] the most of your team’s desire to do good.” Comments like that get my inner philosophy nerd all excited because they point to this idea that I’ve mentioned a time or twelve on this site. Organizations, culture, leadership, engagement, etc–they’re all about helping all parties involved become more appropriately human.

As humans, there are things we naturally want to do. You’ll notice I didn’t say we naturally always do them; but we have aspirations, at least much of the time, of being kind to our fellow man and so on. It would make sense, then, that organizations would live and lead in light of that understanding. If organizations are indeed clumps of humans working and living life together for the bulk of their waking hours, why wouldn’t you want to integrate doing good into your organization’s way of life? Organizations are literally habitats for humans, after all.

These humans, these folks next to you and me at the office, if given the opportunity, would likely want to help out their fellow man somehow. I mean, we see it inside the organization all the time, don’t we? Or at least when we’re working the way we all want to work we see it, right? We see someone who needs help, so we help them. We see someone struggling, so we come alongside, put our arm around them, and try to assist. This is that desire to do good that Laura was mentioning in her post. So why wouldn’t we, as organizations and leaders, employ proactive strategies to turn that desire inside-out?

For regular readers of this site, this idea isn’t anything new. I’ve said the same thing about marketing for a long time. It all comes back to culture.

If culture is who you are–your organization’s identity–then it becomes a matter of living it internally and then figuring out compelling ways to help others connect with it externally.

That’s why branding and culture are two sides of the same coin.

So why not stoke the flames that might be smoldering inside your team? Why not give them even more opportunity to do what they were wired to do in a sense? As organizations and leaders, let’s proactively provide chances for our folks to do good, both inside and outside the walls of the organization.

Read more from Matt here.

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Matt Monge

Matt Monge

Matt is a cancer survivor who’s dead set on making the world a better place by helping organizations be better places to work. He’s currently Chief Culture Officer at Mazuma Credit Union, and also does speaking and consulting work to help other organizations with culture, development, recruiting, and leadership. He has been recognized as one of Credit Union Times’ “Trailblazers 40 Below,” and has spoken at national conferences for CUNA and NAFCU in addition to other events. He has written articles for Training magazine, the Credit Union Times, the Credit Union Executives Society, is a contributor for CU Insight, and an editor for CU Water Cooler. He is also a Training magazine Top 125 Award winner. Matt is earning his Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> Are there any reliable statistics about the percentage of church plants that fail after 3 years in the US?
— Jon Moore
comment_post_ID); ?> I am a senior citizen who has lived in many areas of the US, the farthest south being Virginia DC area. There are several church plants in the area--some failed, some doing well. One of the sadist failures was a plant in NW Washington near a large Presbyterian Church (I had been an elder in the church, so I knew the area) where changes in church doctrine was driving many away from the PCUSA churches. There were many mature Christians who lived in the area who were very willing to participate and give generously to the church. Its failure was a loss. The pastor and his wife lived in a VA suburb, wanted something that would appeal to their tastes, which included "praise music". There was a professional piano teacher and several people who had sung in choirs in the area. Their suggestions were completely ignored. Forget that there was joyous participation in singing hymns and silence by many for the praise music. The experienced church leaders that were attending were expected to seek the wisdom of the pastor who did not live in the area rather than have any role in leadership. There is another church plant in Northern Virginia that seems to be going the same way. My take: the pastors should get past their high-school and college days culture and get to know and appreciate the people of the community. Do not try to reproduce Intervarsity or Campus Crusade. Hymns are not a sin and "uneducated" (never graduated from college) should not be ignored as uninformed or stupid. People who have served in and/or live in the area are needed in leadership and not just to serve coffee and give. We all need to pray together and serve God in the community in which there is to be a plant. Glenna Hendricks
— Glenna Hendricks
comment_post_ID); ?> I like it Mac and do agree with your opinions on the matter. Thanks much
— winston

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