This week's poll was about the following question: "Do you think it's helpful for churches to hire consultants?"
The overwhelming majority said Yes (84%), while 7% said No, and the remainder were undecided. Of course, I do understand this is not a scientific poll, and that most of my readers have some level of church leadership experience and have likely worked with a consultant before.
I asked this question because I have worked with several consultants before both individually as a pastor and as a church staff and I've had mostly positive experiences thus far. It helps sometimes to have an outside, objective voice, who is (hopefully) distanced from "ownership" in the congregation to give you some perspective. You might be able to see some things you didn't see before. In my own experiences consultants have helped me and my staff to understand situations a little differently and develop better strategies.
I read an article in the Tulsa World a while back about a local pastor who has gone into consulting with a unique approach. He considers himself a "secret shopper." He'll pretend to be an average visitor and he'll evaluate everything from the parking lot, to the greeters, to the restrooms, to the preaching and give the church an understanding of what it's like to be a "visitor" at their church. Do read the article.
Be sure and respond to this week's poll, too.