Dr. John Maxwell is famous for his statement, "Everything rises and falls on leadership." That's why any stewardship campaign, capital campaign, or strategy for generosity has to start with leadership.
Before you conduct a special offering you've got to get the leadership piece right.
Before you preach on tithing you've got to get the leadership piece right.
Because you start a project you've got to get the leadership piece right.
In fact, if you don't get the leadership piece right, the other things probably won't matter.
There are three components of leadership that need your attention.
The hardest person to lead is yourself.
Raising money at a local church requires a Senior Pastor whose vision for the ministry and project burns in his/her heart, resulting in a passionate move towards action. 1 Chronicles 28:2 records these words from David as he launches the fundraising efforts for the Temple: "Hear me, my brethren and my people: I had it in my heart to build a house of rest for the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and for the footstool of our God, and had made preparations for it."
As the leader of the church, ask yourself this question, "Does it burn in my heart first?" When that question is answered with a strong, "YES!" you can effectively ask those in your church to sacrifice for the advancement of ministry.
The second toughest group of people to lead during a generosity effort is the church staff. While this may surprise you, leadership of the staff is vitally important to a successful campaign. Most church staff members are already over-worked and under-paid, and capital campaign will require even more from them. Church staff must be engaged early on, asked for their input, listened to, and supported. They will be chief vision carriers to the rest of the church! Connect their specific areas of responsibility to the vision and generosity efforts.
3) Senior Leaders
This includes key volunteer, financial, and lay leadership. Those closest to you and your leadership will determine your level of success.
The number one barrier to maximum giving is unanswered questions. To experience maximum participation and receipts from your congregation, the senior leaders need to be answering, not asking, them! Provide ministry tools such as talking points, activities, key Bible passages, educational material, and powerful sermons to those key leaders. More than anything, develop strong relationships with your leaders. Most of the largest gifts given to any major fundraising initiative are given as a result of a strong relationship.
Church Leaders: Your church's capital campaign will rise and fall primarily on your leadership. Lead your people through the spiritual journey, and watch what God will do!