Campus Pastor Toolkit: The Launch Timeline

Final TimelineTwo years ago, I leaned into a key area in my personal growth that needed development, into order to expand ministry leadership. During this season, I reached out to people who I knew had strengths in system development and linear thinking. One particular friend-turned-mentor possesses the prototypical engineer’s mind (suffice it to say, he drives a Volkswagen) and over a series of Houston hole-in-the-wall lunches, my comfort level around spreadsheets increased exponentially.

For any similarly-minded campus pastors, the timeline can unlock a revolution in systems thinking and bring more people alongside the process of launching a campus. A well developed and effective timeline is an essential tool of any successful multisite launch or other strategic initiative.

A timeline is simply a representation of the passage of time over the course of a project, that organizes key milestones in chronological order. A timeline also illustrates the initiative and conveys information in a graphic format.

And I am a big fan of info-graphics.

An effective MultiSite launch timeline…

…starts with the end in mind, keeping the focus beyond starting the campus.

…erects mile markers for assessment in areas of outreach or communication.

…illustrates alignment between ministries and campuses.

…develops rhythm for teams working on differing, but interdependent launch initiatives.

…organizes activity around advancement and implementation.

…provides a leadership snapshot from 30,000 ft.

…allows for detail “double-clicking” into the progress of technology, ministries or groups.

…establishes sign posts for direction when critical decisions are needed.

…appeals to detail oriented, task driven and visual communicators alike.

…demonstrates the step-by-step process for launching the campus.

…equips the core team to participate, facilitating Ephesians 4:12 activity.

…directs intent for core team participation.

…fosters the ability to replicate a process or system naturally across campuses.

How has a timeline helped you advance vision in ministry?