4 Lessons Churches Need To Know About Attracting A Younger Audience
One of the greatest challenges many established churches and older Christians like me (I’m 46) face is staying relevant and attracting a younger audience. I learned some great lessons in this area from a very unlikely source that I wish to pass on to you.
Recently www.FastCompany.com featured a short interview with Kate White, author and former editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine. Like many of us, Kate appears to be in her 40′s or 50′s but her job was to connect with women in their 20′s and early 30′s. Here are her thoughts on how she bridged that generational gap. The applications for the church are quite insightful. You can hear her 60-second interview by clicking here.
- The Younger Generation Is Different Than You - As Kate says, “(A big mistake is) just because you were once in your 20′s and 30′s you think just like them. Generations really are different.” What reached you as a non-believer or young Christian most likely will not reach the next generation.
- Hire Experts On The Next Generation - One of the first things Kate did was hire an expert on Generation X and Y. Do you have someone on your staff who is an expert at the behavioral patterns of the next generation? For help with this issue, I recommend Tim Elmore’s incredible book Generation iY.
- Hire Young Staff – After hiring an expert on the next generation, Kate then began hiring people in their 20′s and 30s.
- Listen To Young People - One of the things Kate did was give young people the first pass at story and cover lines. I am currently involved in a ministry at my home church where I am the third oldest person in the room….and I LOVE IT!!! Listening to young leaders fascinates me. I also love coaching them in areas of teambuilding and leadership development. However, I am careful to not give them too much advice. I try to allow young leaders to stretch their wings and make mistakes. And quite frankly, they are most likely going to come up with better ideas than me anyway.
The Younger Generation Is Different Than You, Hire Experts, Hire Young, And Then Listen To Them. Do these four things and you will position yourself to connect with a younger audience.
Pastors and church leaders, what is one thing you are doing that is reaching Generation X and Y?
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