Once a predominantly white church, Oaks Church is now more racially diverse. With the cultural landscape changing, the leaders are constantly taking stock of what that means and how they’re adapting as a church.
The leaders brought in IC to run the first install of ChurchOS in 2015. The first few years were not easy, but they eventually began to reap the benefits.
What problem they needed to solve
The leaders recognized the need to develop an operating system and culture, but it would’ve taken them 5 or 6 years on their own. So they brought in IC to pursue things in a quicker time frame.
What they thought of IC’s process
Initially, it was rocky because they absorbed the idea of Intentional Growth Planning (IGP) too quickly and immediately tried to re-deploy. But by sticking with the process, they saw the merit in IC’s operating system. The culture at The Oaks is now decidedly different because of ChurchOS.
What their biggest learnings were
1. Identifying the ONE: Their social analytics data showed that 65% of their community was 24 to 35-year-old women. Knowing that helped them design their promos and offerings for the ONE who was female, probably a mom who made most of the major decisions.
2. Value of a great weekend experience: Getting a better understanding of the value of a great weekend experience was new to the leaders. They realized that they could do a lot of other things but if they didn’t have a great weekend experience they were in trouble.
3. Restraining their commitment: One of their biggest problems was that if they had a plan, they committed to doing a certain amount and then added on to it. They had to learn not to overcommit and create more tasks.
Where their church stands now
1. Vision dashboard: The need to fix communication was something that kept coming up, so they launched a VIP (Vision Initiative Projects) team who created a priority matrix for communication.
The question was how to prioritize what they were doing based on objective vision and not people’s opinions. They now have a vision dashboard for what they want to see quantitatively improved.
2. Running IGP: Their church team has developed a rhythm and routine to help them stay on track. Every year the church runs an overall IGP as well as departmental IGPs. Then they set up their VIP teams and go all in with their time, talent, and treasure. The team has had to realign its fiscal calendar to understand this and have movement in the same direction.
3. Personal responsibility: Reaching the ONE is of prime importance and they believe that anyone can do this. They’ve moved from institutional to individual – every member needs to take responsibility for reaching their ONE.