Can't Send Short Term Trips? Tip 6: Lift Up Partners

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Can't Send Short Term Trips?

Tip #6 - Lift Up Partners

Big Picture: Partners are critical to the success of missional engagement - use this season to help shine a light on them.

Partners often get taken for granted in our web of missional engagement. We work so closely with them and our people know them so well that we often forget to take a step back and really focus on helping others learn about them. This is a great season to tell their story and help educate your audience about these amazing partners. Here are a few ideas.

  • Find Out Their Needs - reach out to your partners during this season and ask about their needs during this time. That’s partnership right?! Reach out to ask about their needs and to see if there’s some way you could support those needs.
  • Host a Webinar - schedule a webinar with each of your partners and invite all of your members to attend. It’s good to give these some structure (ex: start with prayer, ask a few set questions, etc.). This is a great way to introduce your audience to your partners.
  • Share Ways to Engage: either through email, webinar, or any other vehicle... find ways to share their partner needs and let people know how they can engage with that partner. You don’t have to be the middleman all the time... help connect your audience directly with your partner for more updates.
  • Prayer Teams - consider creating prayer teams for each of your partners that commit to meeting each week and praying for your partners. These teams can be such an encouragement to both your organization and your partner.
  • Interview Your Partners - make time to connect with your partner for an interview and go through a series of questions. You can take those questions and turn them into a partner focus page on your website or a great blog entry.
  • Retool Your Partner Webpages - take a look at your website and where you feature partners. Perhaps you could do a better job telling the story of each partner, why you partner, and how you go about partnering with other organizations.

Use this season to bring special attention to your partners and build up the resources to more
clearly explain who it is you partner with and why. This is a great season to bring a lot of clarity to your wonderful partnerships.


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Mission Trip Software: 5 Tips to Select the Right One for You
So what in the world is mission trip software?!  Great question.  Essentially mission trip software are tools that help you run the logistics of your short term missions trips.  But all things are not created equal.  It all starts with understanding your overall goals and then evaluating the tools that make the most sense for you.  Let’s navigate a few key tips to set you up for success on selecting the mission trip software that’s best for you.     Tip #1 - Know Your Goals Everyone has a different set of goals but we believe there are a few that we all agree on and ones that we see quite often.  Most everyone is looking for ways to do the following: Reduce Stress - there are so many logistical items for managing a short term trip - the software should help relieve some of that stress. Save Time - the average short term trip takes around 150 hours to manage - the software should greatly reduce that amount of time. Expandabilty to Grow - the reduction in both stress and time should allow for the expansion of your missions program. Keeping People Engaged - short term trips should always have a way to keep people engaged with your organization and in a life of missional living.     Tip #2 - Determine the Features that Matter You have an idea in your head about what features matter most to you.  Take a moment to write those down and talk those over with your team.  And if you need some ideas for features that you should be considering, take a look at our free Guide to Choosing the Best Technology to Grow Your Missions Program.  The best thing you can do is map out your desired features and then start evaluating which tool works best for you.    Tip #3 - Ask the Right Questions There may be a ton of questions you want to ask about any technology, as you should.  Many of these questions you can answer on your own as you look through their sales site and explore features.  But there are other questions you’ll have that might be specific to your needs or processes.  Be sure to contact the tools you’re exploring to help answer those questions.  Here are a few questions we recommend considering when looking at any new software: Does it manage online fundraising? Is it simple for our staff to use? Is it simple for our participants to use? Can it scale to our ultimate vision in missions engagement? Does it help mature our participants toward greater life engagement? Do applicants need to fill out application data from scratch each time? Can you control what each trip admin can and cannot do? Do trip members have dedicated fundraising pages? Are your trip participants notified of financial progress? Does it help you tell your organization’s missional story?   Tip #4 - Engage Others on Your Team Don’t make this decision on your own… certainly don’t feel the weight of the decision needs to be completely on your shoulders.  Consider engaging your boss, your finance department, your IT department, your communications department, your team leaders, and whoever else helps make the whole world of short term missions a reality at your organization. You will be thankful for their wisdom and insights.     Tip #5 - Build a Comparison Chart You know what you’re looking for in a mission trip software solution.  As you look through various options and solutions, create a simple comparison chart of your own that helps you see things side by side.  You know what’s important to you so, in some ways, you’re the only one who can build that chart.  Feel free to take a look at our comparison page to get an idea of how to start building your comparison chart.     Most of all… have fun!  I know, how is selecting a technology fun?  But it can be… this season of exploring is short-lived and it really is one that can help you dream of what you could be doing.  Enjoy this exploration as you investigate all the possibilities and narrow in your selection.