This post was last updated on October 9th, 2020 at 03:57 pm.
To say 2020 is a challenging time would be the understatement of the century. We have seen everything from Covid-19 to unrest in the country. If you are a church leader, you are probably struggling with how to prioritize these challenges.
As a software company we saw our own list of challenges. For example, many of our clients didn’t do online donations before the pandemic. They didn’t see the need since the majority of their congregation gave by check or cash. The thought of closing their doors for months on end had never entered their minds until the pandemic hit. Giving by cash or check in the plate came to a stand still in March. Many of our clients had to move to electronic giving — and fast.
Communication changed dramatically for churches. They had to find better ways to communicate important information to all church members. This could be things like small group meetings, a change in a schedule, a quick pastor’s note, and so on. The communication abilities of IconCMO have really shined during this time, to provide churches a way to send out mass emails and text messages.
For communication, text messaging is an invaluable tool. We had an update to this module ready in time for our clients right when Covid-19 showed up. It was awesome timing and our clients really loved the changes. Spoiler alert — there’s more planned for this module, so stay tuned.
How Do We Do It?
As you can see there were many changes when the pandemic hit that IconCMO was able to handle for our clients. One might ask, how do software companies stay on top of things? Do they have a crystal ball that tells them that a pandemic is going to happen? Where do software companies get their inspiration? Rest assured, we do not have a crystal ball or any other way to predict the future. We wish we did, but that’s not reality.
Many times we stay tuned in to many of the church leaders throughout the world. We listen to leaders on podcasts, review blogs or social platforms to see what they are saying. Then we dissect that information to see if we hear shortcomings that they had to overcome or issues they have already resolved. These shortcomings can be very subtle hints. It takes a good ear to hear them — and sometimes we make assumptions. These assumptions are later clarified before development starts.
So how do we stay on top of all this information? We use sites like Feedspot which gives us an idea of the many influential church leaders that are actively producing content. We utilize the content from these sites to help determine how we can assist our customers. This is one way we try to stay ahead of the curve. Instead of the crystal ball, it comes down to a lot of research, pulling up your sleeves, and getting down to the hard work that’s needed.
Leadership in troubling times is a harsh reality in 2020. Good leaders know how to adjust. This doesn’t always mean church growth year over year, even growth is certainly important. Technology is only a tool that can help. It will never replace those personal relationships that humans develop when they are together. IconCMO is a tool to help churches grow, connect, and help them along their journey. Church leaders are the true heroes that make it happen and we at Icon Systems listen to their needs. It’s interesting that back in 2015 we discussed how technology can change the way humans interact with the church in our post ‘Does the Church Have to Change?‘. That time has now come, hopefully for the better.