Nothing is worse than working around 20 different schedules to get a team together for a meeting that could have been avoided or, at least, shortened. Some of the apps and tools below have a small monthly fee involved but the cost is well worth the time and energy saved. Especially with church staff members taking on multiple roles and trying to utilize volunteers, time and resources can be scarce. Investing a little money each month can make a huge impact on your productivity, organization, efficiency, and team morale.

1. GET ORGANIZED

Having your files organized and in a place that is accessible to the team will make collaboration much easier.

 

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I would suggest using an online service like Dropbox or Sync to store your files. You can easily setup viewer or editor permissions for each team member which will allow certain users to alter files that they’re responsible for. Personally, when I’m working with a group of editors, I always keep backup files on an external hard drive just in case but that isn’t necessary. This just ensures that any unwanted changes made to the files can be “undone”.

 

2. STAY CONNECTED

Keeping the lines of communication open will keep everyone up to date with all the project information so there’s no catching up to do.

 

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Using a project management software like Trello, Slack, or Basecamp will allow you to have conversations with your team and view all your resources at your own pace. Many churches are working with a communications team of part-time staff and/or volunteers so you may have a group with multiple schedules to work around. By using an online collaboration tool like the ones mentioned above, you can avoid schedule conflicts by allowing each team member to contribute when the time is available to them. It will also help you keep various conversations separated so you don’t have to sift through a long chain of emails looking for specific information.

3. BE REALISTIC

 

There will come a time when the vision of the team is beyond the realm of your resources. Keeping things in perspective will allow you to execute your projects well and with less stress.

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Time tracking isn’t completely necessary for every team, but there is a considerable advantage to knowing how much time each project has required. I would recommend Harvest or Timely to keep tracking organized. After a handful of projects you’ll have a much better understanding of how your time needs to be managed and what tasks should take top priority. This will allow you to put together future strategies that best suit your team and your goals.

 

4. HAVE FUN

 

Happy teams are always more efficient. Investing time to build genuine relationships will strengthen your team and improve your overall productivity.

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It may seem like a waste of time to be doing anything other than planning and executing your projects but a team that enjoys working together will always get more done. If you’re currently using Slack, check out Donut or one of the many games available. Donut will select random people on the team and suggest they grab coffee or a doughnut. You could also try out some of the games like Tic-Tac-Toe or GameMonk as a carefree way to interact with your group. At the end of the day we’re a family and learning to balance work and fun is a great way to invest in those relationships.

 

Did you find this article helpful? What resources do you use to keep your team on track? We’d love to hear from you!

 

Written by Lindsey Moss

Christ Follower, Wife, Graphic Designer, Singer, Musician, Pro-Oxford Comma, and former Worship & Creative Arts Director. Let's do this thang.

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