Advanced Strategic Planning, A 21st-Century Model for Church and Ministry Leaders is by Aubrey Malphurs, senior professor of leadership and pastoral ministry at Dallas Theological Seminary and founder of The Malphurs Group.
The problem that Malphurs tackles is that 80-85 percent of churches in North America either have plateaued or are in decline. In addition the number of unchurched people in America may be as high as 70 to 80 percent.
Most organizations like churches follow a pattern of growing, plateauing, and declining. Malphurs’ answer to the problem of church decline is to interrupt this pattern with a new pattern of growth. Advanced Strategic Planning is his how-to guide to starting these new patterns of growth. Strategy for the new growth pattern should be tailored into one of three contexts: church planting, church growth, or church revitalization.
The scope of topics that Malphurs addresses is incredibly broad. He offers advice on staffing, church boards, training, vision and planning, budgets and debt, church location, architecture and parking spaces. There are lessons and insights that every church’s leadership will learn from.
The book also includes fourteen appendixes that offer helpful tools for analyzing and developing local churches including a readiness for change inventory, leader-manager audit, and strategic development worksheet.
I recommend Malphurs’ book especially for young pastors and church leadership teams who would like to evaluate and analyze the next steps to start a new growth cycle.
See also review of Malpurs’ The Nuts and Bolts of Church Planting