Level 7 is largely a continuation of Level 6. While your leadership began in Level 6 taking some partners through the Major Partner Cycle, they will now complete the cycle with at least one partner (assuming that some of them don’t make it past the Evaluation stage).
Completing the Major Partner Cycle means finding significant, strategic ways for the partner to engage in your ministry and then presenting a personalized proposal to them for a faith-stretching gift. Much of your leadership’s Development focus during this time will be focused on these things.
Other team members, however, are focusing more on building ownership among all partners of the ministry. They are finding ways to give the ministry over to volunteers, whether than be by asking them to plan events, provide referrals, lead small groups, or any number of other opportunities.
5 LANES OF DEVELOPMENT
Offering significant, personalized opportunities for passive and active engagement to larger partners.
At least 1 large, in-person gathering of partners.
Small, strategic gatherings of mid-level partners.
Completing the Major Partner Cycle with at least 1 partner by soliciting a major gif
In addition to past efforts, relationships are grown with individuals through meetings, engagements, and follow-up.
Visibility online and through events.
Partners share positive experiences after engagement.
This level doesn't look the same for every team. The snapshot of the 5 Lanes of Development (above) might perfectly reflect your team's current Development operations, but there's probably at least one area that doesn't fit. In those areas, your team might seem to be further along than this Level or perhaps still catching up. That's okay!
That said some things are true of most teams at this stage. Here's a brief list of things that are probably true of your team if you're at this level:
At least one partner is specifically, strategically asked to give a major gift
Partners are beginning to lead the ministry through volunteering their Labor, Influence, and Expertise
Entire staff team is involved in Development operations in some capacity
Inviting partners to attend meetings, outreaches, conferences, and other ministry activities
Allowing partners to be a part of your ministry through active engagement opportunities
Drafting and editing strategic, actionable, and reportable proposals to present to partners
As teams reach this stage, some focus less on their larger Development gatherings because they no longer depend on them as heavily to provide funding. In the long run, this cuts off a team’s influx of new partners and limits the number of partners who are involved in the ministry.
Staff will need to work harder to gather reportable statistics and stories for activities that have been funded by partners. This sometimes isn’t as easy as it seems.
POTENTIAL NEXT STEPS
Prepare to continue the MPC with any partner you’ve asked for a gift. This will involve deeper commitments to the partnership on your part and theirs.
Gather information in preparation to report on the partners’ gifts.
Look into ministry needs beyond your team that might interest your partners