This post is part of a mulit-part series giving pointers to those who are starting out in church communications.
Landing a job in the field of church communications can be tricky. There is lots of information available for the person trying to break in to communications in a corporate or business setting, but how does one go about it in the church world? We want to answer your questions.
Hopefully you will walk away with the confidence to live out your calling as a leader in helping the church better communicate its message.
One of the essential parts to landing a job as a communications director in a church is learning the trade. This includes both formal and informal education.
There are many paths we can take to get a formal education. For example:
- An undergraduate degree in communications.
- A masters degree in communications or a related field.
- An MBA with supplemental communications classes.
Personally, I wanted to start out with a background in ministry (in fact, I intended on being a pastor from the beginning, not a communications professional) so I pursued an undergraduate degree in “Christian Ministry.” It wasn’t until later that I received formal training in communications and media.
The important thing isn’t necessarily which path you choose, but rather choosing a path and jumping in. Get as much formal education as is practical…it never hurts.
Beyond the Books
Aside from schooling, there are other ways to learn the ins and outs of church communication. For example, internships are a great way to get practical knowledge valuable for serving in churches.
People To Follow (on Twitter, Facebook, etc):
- Ben Arment
- Blaine Hogan
- Bobby Chandler
- Brad Abare
- Cleve Persinger
- Danielle Hartland
- Dawn Nicole Baldwin
- Eric Murrell
- Jon Acuff
- John Saddington
- Josh Burns
- Justin Wise
- Katie Persinger
- Kem Meyer
- Kevin Hendricks
- Lori Bailey
- Matt Knisely
- Michael Buckingham
- Michael Hyatt
- Nathan Davis
- Phil Cooke
- Phil Bowdle
- Scott McClellan
- Steve Fogg
- Tim Schraeder
- Tony Morgan
There are literally hundreds of other people that I didn’t have room to list, but this list will get you started.
Attending conferences, workshops, tweet-ups, etc. is another way to “informally” learn the craft. Don’t forget to look at both ministry conferences (like Cultivate, Catalyst, Echo, The Global Leadership Summit, Story, etc) and non-ministry conferences (Photoshop World, SXSW, NAB, etc) as you’re determining your budget.
Finally, above all else, believe in yourself and just jump in. Volunteer for your church or a local non-profit. Help out your youth group or college ministry. The sooner you can get in and start interacting with ministry leaders, and church attenders as soon and as much as possible. The only way to truly learn the nuances of communicating in the church is to get in there and do it.
In the next post we will look at how to land a job in church communications.