What Makes for a Great Church Creative/Communications Director?

A great church creative director is equal parts brand ambassador, storyteller, metaphor maker, creative coach, and strategist.

What Makes for a Great Church Creative/Communications Director?
There are three types of stories: Stories of being in mission with our community, stories of being relationship with one another, and stories of Jesus being made more real in people’s lives.
What Makes for a Great Church Creative/Communications Director?
There are three types of stories: Stories of being in mission with our community, stories of being relationship with one another, and stories of Jesus being made more real in people’s lives.

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Show me an image of a disciple in the form of a story, and I will show you a ministry, program, or activity that “works.” There are three types of stories: Stories of being in mission with our community, stories of being relationship with one another, and stories of Jesus being made more real in people’s lives. We’ve done all kinds of stories like this at St. Andrew, and we need more - we can never have enough. (Here’s one example.)

The catch is that you can’t be responsible for locating all stories. You need others around you to feed you good stories, which means you need to inspire your fellow staff and volunteers that we are all storytellers, and we are all story receivers. We both listen to the stories, and we tell them again and give them back to each other. They are like life blood to our community.

3) A great church creative director is the primary maker of metaphors.

One of my mentors says, “change the metaphor, change the world.” Deep metaphors greatly influence human behavior. They drive people’s lives. For example, if you think of life as a battle, or if life is a journey, you’ll behave accordingly.

They’re the reason that sermon series are so crucial. What sermon series do is give you six to eight gems of an opportunity each year to introduce sanctified metaphors to help people re-orient their sextant toward Jesus. This means more than just making a pretty typeface for “Galatians.” It is finding metaphors that help drive how we preach, teach, and understand God’s Word.

My site is full of examples of this, like here and here. It is one of the top three most important things I do: I cast vision for new metaphors, and look for fresh images to represent the same ideas, in the form of creative briefs that I write for each upcoming sermon series.

4) A great church creative director knows how to do the work, but spends time coaching.

With a team of multiple talented creative people, I don’t actually do many tasks anymore. Well, that’s not true - I write, but usually internal documents that go to other creatives and pastors for directing their efforts. Sometimes, I dive in and make suggestions on designs or video edits, but mostly instead, I do a lot of management by walking around - popping into offices and cubicles.


More About Len Wilson
Len Wilson has been championing creativity and more effective communication in church life since 1993. In service to this calling, he has worked on four church staffs, written ten books, consulted with dozens of churches, spoken at hundreds of events, founded two media micro-publishing firms, and acquired leadership books at a major publishing house. He is currently Creative Director at St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Plano, Texas.
Get in Touch: len@lenwilson.us    More by Len Wilson

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Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.


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Team Management · Leadership · Spiritual Health · Team Development · Volunteers · Community · Metaphor · Principles · Relationship · Stories · Storyteller · All Topics

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