Growing your church up Part 3: Separate the MC from the Stage Manager and Program Planner

I've noticed that in small conferences and ministries, the MC is EITHER an after-thought job by someone who doesn't prepare at all OR they are the person responsible for the whole event, and part of that responsibility is MCing.

But planning the program is a very distinct thing from implementing that program. And the public work of leading that program is another thing again.

Doing events really well - even running Sunday church services, means separate out the Stage Manager and Program Planner from the MC:

This helps us focus on the MC making the up-front stuff flow. They, like the preacher or the band leader, are focused on what they will actually do publicly. Their nervous energy and focus can be given over to that. 

This helps us focus on recruiting MCs who will be best for this role. The best MCs might not be the most reliable and organised to run the whole event. They might not be the most theologically sharp to plan the detailed flow of the service. Or they might be busy people who don't want to say Yes to all that stuff.

This also helps us have a single person whose entire focus is the conception and planning of the event. This  Program Planner thinks and writes the program and then invites people to be involved, finalising the details along the way.

And then once the program is written, the Stage Manager takes that plan and implements it - writing detailed run sheets and oversees everybody. The Stage Manager also communicates with the sound, lights, powerpoint, music - as well as with the 'Front of House' people (ushers, greeters, catering etc). 

Because the Stage Manager is not MCing, they can be concentrating on this the entire event, even advising the MC as incidentals change.

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