Bethany Briefs
January 2013

learning about and getting involved in communication

by Zach Christensen

This past fall, I had the pleasure to work with Susan Forshey and the rest of the Bethany staff on a communication audit. This project fulfilled a major requirement for an organizational communication class I was in at SPU. My objectives were to learn where Bethany is in regards to communication and what the church does and does not do well. Many of you helped contribute by filling out a congregational survey in service at the beginning of November. After many interviews and a few surveys with staff and Session, there are some really great conclusions that came forth.

The clearest conclusion is Bethany’s overall success in their communicative efforts. A majority of the congregation said they feel Informed, and many more felt Very Informed. No one said they were not at all in the loop. We identified some of the major successes in the church’s communication structure, including the paper you are holding in your hands: the Briefs! The various Sunday announcements and the mail home letters where also highly successful forms of getting information. As with any working organization, there is room for improvement as well. Most of these are smaller, more technical goals, but there is also a place for you as member of the congregation to participate.

Many identified the Church Community Builder (CCB), aka Bethany Online, as a place for improvement. My conclusion is simply that more of the church needs to embrace and get involved in the CCB. We all need to make sure that our profiles are up to date, including our addresses, email and pictures. The website is fairly easy to use. Adele Drummond and the Bethany Online team would love to answer any questions you may have about using CCB.

I had a wonderful time working on the project, I learned a lot about how our church functions and I am excited to participate as we move into the future.