In the book Creativity, Inc., the reader gets a peek into the world of Pixar and the reasons for the success of the company. Along the way, Pixar learned some valuable lessons. One of those related to the need to “feed the machine.” Perhaps you have a job that requires you to continually “feed the machine” to keep things running, to keep income coming in, and to keep new products and ideas moving forward.
How does feeding the machine relate to your Bible study group? It relates plenty! One thing you must continually do is to make sure you have a sufficient pool of potential group members (assuming your group is an open group designed to reach new people). You need to feed “the prospect machine.”
One reason newer groups sometimes don’t last is because they don’t have enough prospects. Established groups lose people due to natural attrition. Those groups must replenish members who move away and/or drop out. Maintaining a sufficient list of prospects is extremely important to ongoing Bible study groups. Here are 3 ways to generate more prospects for your Bible study group:
- The church office. Hopefully, your church staff is funneling prospects to you through your record keeping system. As guests share their information with the church, their contact information needs to flow to you and your group. If it’s not, contact someone from your church staff and request they send you regular updates about the people who are potential members of your group.
- The worship service. In every worship service there are people who are prospects for your group. Although they may not fill out any guest information, you can still spot them if you’re looking. Encourage the members of your group to intentionally watch for guests around the area where they normally sit. Get into the habit of inviting those prospects to your Bible study group that morning.
- People known by your group members. Every one of your group members likely know 5 people who are not attending any Bible study group. Create a list of potential prospects by asking each group member to identify those 5 people, committing to invite them to a future group meeting. A group of 12 people knows about 60 people who are not attending any Bible study – and that’s a healthy amount of prospects!