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How to Start a Church From the Ground Up

Church Startup Tips

Starting a new church is a complex undertaking, but also a rewarding one. There are legal steps that need to be taken, location scouting, the actual building and then the recruitment of a congregation. Yet at the end of it all, you will feel a deep sense of accomplishment right down to your soul.

Surprisingly, the first thing you need to accomplish before anything is to establish a church name. This will be necessary in order to start the process of becoming legally and tax compliant. This is a multi-step process involving paperwork and filing with the proper authorities to ensure that your church is recognized as a legal institution, with the correct tax filing status. Unless you have first-hand knowledge of this process, it is a good idea to have an attorney, ideally one from your congregation take care of this aspect for you.

Choosing a Location For Your New Church

When scouting for a site for a new church, the principle of real estate where location is everything holds true. You want to build your church in an area that has a need for one, and is easily accessible for everyone. If possible, form a committee from your existing congregates and take any input they have on location to heart. These are the people who will be attending your services, and it is they who have the insight into knowing what is an attractive location for a church.

Factors to look at when choosing the location include:

  • Its cost
  • The size of the lot
  • Accessibility
  • Neighborhood

Before beginning the search for the perfect plot of land, go over this list with your committee, and make firm decisions regarding the outcome, to ensure that everyone knows what the requirements are.

Building Your New Church

Again with key members of your congregation, you are going to want to make the design and plans for your new church. Their input is invaluable, plus it helps in building a strong sense of community as well as a place of worship. A church should be aesthetically pleasing, but that should not be the focus of your building plans. Instead, focus on the functionality and the many needs it has to meet.

First consider the size of the community and the potential number of attendants to your services. Ensure that you have enough room for pews to accommodate them all. You might also need to design an area for the choir, or consider a second floor balcony where they can perform from if space is limited.

Think about activities your church sponsors. Will a basement be a good idea to serve as space for youth group and bible study meetings? There are a lot of items to consider, this is why you will want as much participation from church members as possible.

When your new church is complete, be sure that its grand opening as a place of worship for the entire community is a festive event. Have a picnic or carnival after the inaugural service where the entire community, regardless of denomination, is invited to attend. This not only will welcome you warmly to the area, it provides you an opportunity to hand out sign-up sheets. You can then use that information to help build your congregation through the use of automated church notifications, email and of course snail mail.

Be proud of accomplishing such a grand task, and allow your congregation to stand proud next to you. Church is not only about worship, but about building bridges between people to form a sense of community where every member feels secure and at home.



Five Simple Tips on How to be an Amazing Teacher

School Teacher Tips

Being a good teacher goes far beyond providing students with knowledge and skills. Good teaching is about attitude and the way in which you influence your students. If you are in doubt about your teaching style, look past what and focus more on how you are delivering your knowledge.

  • Show Respect For Your Students - A good teacher values the input and opinions of their students. If students are free to offer ideas and express feelings they will learn how to show respect for others. Be approachable and a great listener and your students will be more likely to pay close attention to everything you have to share with them.
  • Treat Your Classroom Like a Little Community - A student should feel secure the second they enter your classroom, knowing that there are rules to follow, yet in a supportive environment. Make sure that each student understands their role in your classroom and that they feel like an integral part of a group. Students fare better in their studies when they have the support of their peers as well as their teacher.
  • Keep Your Expectations High - Push your students to achieve more than they think they are capable of. If you show that you expect little from your students then little is what you will get. A good teacher knows that students of all ages will rise to the occasion if you set your expectations high and provide the knowledge needed to reach them.
  • Be Flexible - To be a good teacher you need to adopt a "go with the flow" attitude. If a lesson plan you spent days working on is not meeting your goal, be willing to accept that and try something different. If a classroom discussion takes an unexpected turn, encourage the train of thought and see where it takes your students. There is little certainty in life, and the small world of your classroom needs to reflect that as well.
  • Recognize Your Own Weaknesses - Education is always evolving and new discoveries need to constantly be acknowledged. A good teacher knows that they need to update and continue their own education through classes and seminars in order to be effective in their career.

It should also go without saying that a great teacher loves their job and does not have any regrets about their career choice. If you do feel overly frustrated or overwhelmed, it may be time to step away from the profession and reconsider your career. Teaching is a selfless job, where you are an active part of forming a future for the lives of others. This is a huge responsibility that requires dedication and a strong commitment to the welfare of your students.

At times, it may seem as if teaching does not get the respect that it deserves. Yet as a good teacher, you are aware of your important position and continue to strive for greatness in yourself and your students. It is with that positive attitude and continued drive that you will be able to provide a valuable education for your students, along with showing them to always value their position in the world.



4 Tips for Scoutmasters on How to Run a Great Boy Scout Troop

Boy Scout Troop Tips

Being a successful scoutmaster is not an easy undertaking. You must possess a strong commitment to scouting and the fundamental principles it preserves. This, on top of a love for children, spending quality time with them, and performing fulfilling activities makes for a good scout leader. If you possess those qualities, then you are ready for tips on how to make your Boy Scout troop a success:

  1. Participate in the Training Programs - You may have been a scout, but that is quite a different experience from being a Scoutmaster. Start your mission by attending the various adult training programs offered by the Boy Scouts*. There is a Fast Start Training program that gets you started with understanding your role, followed by Adult Basic Training and Youth Protection Training. These Boy Scout sponsored programs will give you the skills needed to run a good Boy Scout troop.
  2. Build a Support Network - You need the help and participation of the scouts' parents or you could quickly become overburdened with your responsibilities. Set up an effective network of communication using a mass notification service such as DialMyCalls so that you can recruit parents for help on trips, raising funds, and planning special events through automated phone calls and SMS text messages. With the parents actively involved, you get to spend more time working with and helping your Boy Scouts in reaching their goals.
  3. Be a Spirited Scoutmaster - Your enthusiasm for scouting will spill over onto the scouts, so be sure that you are infusing your scouts with Scout Spirit at every meeting and event. Proudly wear your uniform and insist that scouts wear theirs. Make reciting the scout oath, scout law and slogan a part of the ritual for opening meetings. Also do not forget the importance of providing services in the community, such as reading to the elderly or cleaning up streets. These types of activities encompass the spirit of the Boy Scouts and will make you and your troop members proud to be a part of it.
  4. Know Your Role as a Scoutmaster - Boy Scouts is also about encouraging and building leadership skills in young men. This is why you are not only a Scout leader but also a Scoutmaster. While you are there to provide the adult support that younger scouts need, they should be able to take charge and run the troop by themselves as much as possible. Appoint senior patrol leaders and assistants who will then form the council to govern the group. This teaches scouts how to work as a group and resolve issues in an effective manner. You need to be comfortable in your role as a resource offering your support, in order for the boys to learn how to be leaders.

The rewards of being a Scoutmaster are tremendous, as you get to be an active part of instilling values and morals into young scouts. Take your role seriously, involve the parents, understand exactly what is expected of you, and you will become the model Scoutmaster running a great Boy Scout troop.

*For more information regarding Boy Scouts and their training programs, please visit www.scouting.org.



Increasing Profits in a Small Business With 5 Simple Steps

Small Business Tips

Now more than ever, the ways in which consumers are accessing services and products change in the blink of an eye. This means that a small business needs to be quick on their feet and flexible in order to keep up and keep a steady income flow. There are some people who think that starting a small business is not much more than setting up a website or opening the store's doors. They quickly find out that there is much more to it, and will lose everything they have invested quickly if they don't adapt right away. Here are some ways in which you can not only avoid that happening to your small business, but will help you to grow it to be successful.

Stay Organized

There is a lot to be done every day with a small business, and you need to be organized to stay on top of it all. Keep a detailed calendar of your daily tasks, as well as important due dates in the future. Something small like an appointment can be easily over-looked, but could seriously hurt your small business if you forget about it. Or imagine if you forget to order an important stock item for an upcoming holiday. You will never remember everything on your own, so get in the habit of writing down all you have pending, and look at the calendar often during the day.

Record all of Your Transactions

A successful business has to be able to look back and see what went right or wrong at any given time. The only way to do this, and plan for future success, is by having a detailed record of the past. Successful small restaurants depend heavily on past trends in order to plan inventory and staff requirements for certain holidays and special events that take place annually.

Study Your Competitors

Look at your business like a sports team, where you study the opposing team to learn how to overpower them. If you want your small business to be successful, you have to study the competition in order to stay a step ahead of them. Don't feel bad about monitoring them online, or sending staff members to shop in their store to compare prices. Chances are they are doing the same to you without you knowing it.

Keep Up With the Current Marketing Trends

The smartphone has become the new PC, and you need to strategize your marketing around its small screen. Yes, you should have a website, but ensure that it is readable on a mobile device. Another important trend is direct marketing using SMS text messages. You will need to have some type of loyalty club or other means of gaining access to cell phone numbers and having customers opt-in for automated alerts from you. You can then use an SMS marketing service such as DialMyCalls to send text messages alerting your opted in customers to a current sale or new merchandise. Nightclubs for example have had great success with this type of advertising by sending a surprise text for an hour of free drinks, free admission and other similar incentives.

Don't Be Afraid of Being Creative

You have to find ways to make your small business shine brighter than your competition. Take chances and be creative when it comes to your products and services. The same is true for your marketing techniques. Create a memorable catch phrase, and brand your small business in a way that is unique from any others similar to yours.

If you remain focused and give your small business the attention it deserves, the profits will begin to roll in. Accept that you will make mistakes, and that every day is not going to go exactly as you planned, you will actually be better prepared to handle any of the curve balls that are thrown your way.



7 Restaurant Industry Tips For Building A Solid Customer Base

Restaurant Industry Tips

There are some very scary statistics regarding new restaurants and their likelihood of failure. At worse, some reports claim that 90% will close within a year, while a study conducted by Ohio State University says 60% and then 80% by year 5.

No matter how you slice it, those are terrifying numbers to think about if you are a restaurant owner. To avoid becoming one of those statistics, work on building a strong customer base using these 7 methods:

  1. Live By the Rule of Seven - There is a saying in the restaurant business that you make one guest in your restaurant happy, you have created one good repeat customer. When you make one mad, they are going to share their bad experience with 7 of their closest friends. Stress over the top service in your restaurant at all times, and go to any length to ensure that no one leaves that is not satisfied with their experience.
  2. Be Creative in Your Marketing - Create a Facebook page and utilize Twitter to tweet out menu changes and specials. Social media is a fantastic form of free advertising that can reach thousands of potential customers.
  3. Start a Loyalty Club - Incentive programs are not just for retail outlets. Many big name restaurants have loyalty clubs where repeat customers are emailed coupons and incentives. Ask them to opt-in for SMS marketing with their cell phone number and then use an SMS broadcasting service like DialMyCalls to send alerts geared especially for members. Send out a mass text message at 3 o'clock about your special starting at 5 and watch as your tables fill up.
  4. Be Active in the Community - Sponsor local little league teams, and offer your back dining room as a slow Tuesday night meeting place for the local PTA or Elks Club. Being benevolent to the community that supports you will reap you rewards in the form of new customers and repeat business.
  5. Buy Locally - Businesses should be supportive of one another as much as possible. Why order your cheese from a wholesaler if there is a dairy farm just outside of your town? When you are supporting local businesses, they will be more inclined to support yours.
  6. Serve Great Food Consistently - Stay on top of your kitchen and what is coming out of it. If a guest is coming back today because of the great chicken marsala they had last week, it is up to you to ensure that it is just as good now. Work with all of your chefs together so that each is making the entrees to the same specifications.
  7. Offer Take-Out - Not everyone will have time to sit down and eat inside of your restaurant, but if you have a reliable take out service, you can please your customers and increase sales. If possible, make it a delivery service. Just ensure that the food is always just as perfect boxed to go as it is when served at a table.

Despite the scary statistics on restaurant closings, there are still hundreds of thousands that go on to make it. Become one of those by following these tricks of the restaurant trade.



6 Tips For Tackling the Job of a Youth Football Coach

Youth Football Coach Tips

Summer sports leagues are getting ready to kick into high gear, including youth football. Whether you have several seasons under your belt or this is your first time coaching youth football, we have some tips on how you can make the experience an enjoyable one both for your team and yourself.

Stick to the Basics

Hang up the dreams of your team executing perfect plays 100% of the time, and stick with the basics of the game when coaching youth football. Instead of pulling out the playbook with overly complicated formations, make sure the kids understand the difference between offense and defense, the various positions of the game, and how to block, catch, throw, and tackle.

Involve the Parents

You will have a much easier time of keeping things positive if you involve the parents right from the start. Get a list of phone numbers for each parent that has a child playing on your team and use a mass notification system, such as DialMyCalls, to give updates about game times and locations. This can also be used as an easy reminder service via phone call or text message and for sudden cancellations or changes in plans. If you start off the season with an open line of communication with the parents you will have an easier time smoothing out any conflicts later on.

Let Good Sportsmanship Trump Winning

Sometimes your best player may have to sit one out in order to let everyone have a chance to play, or you may have to bench someone for an obvious penalty. All coaches want their team to be a winning one, but when dealing with young kids, the better lesson learned is how to be a team player rather than a perfect wide receiver.

Don't Play Favorites

You may favor some of the players more than others, especially your own, but this can never be the basis of any of your coaching actions. Treat all of the kids on your team exactly the same way all of the time in order to avoid bruised egos and hurt feelings. One of the goals of youth football should be to build confidence, which you will be seriously undermining if you make it obvious that you favor some of the players over others.

Don't Dwell on Defeat

Learn how to take a loss with a smile, and your team will too. Teach them grace in defeat by insisting that they shake the opposing team's hands and commending them for a job well done. As adults, we know that not all of our endeavors will be victorious, but if kids learn how to deal with that early on, they will be better prepared for long passes that life will throw them.

Have Fun

Smile and laugh a lot when you are out on the field with your mini football players. This is supposed to be a fun activity for everyone involved. When you maintain a positive and energetic attitude with your team, they will follow your example.

If this is your first team donning the youth football coaching jersey, don't be intimidated. No one expects you to be the next Vince Lombardi, and your team is certainly not a professional league team. Coaching kids is more about having a good time and learning valuable lessons than it is about how many touchdowns your team can make in a season.

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