Emergence Marketing highlighted a new studyÂ conducted byÂ the Economist Intelligence Unit called Foresight 2020. It forecasts probable changes that may occur in the global economy over the next fifteen years. Two trends, in particular,Â that could influence the church are:
- Personalization. Consumer markets, while still adhering to the importance of price and quality, will increasingly become focused on personalization. As the economy and society become accustomed to a custom lifestyle, personalization will notÂ be innovative or special but an expected standard. Consequently, I expect the importance of creating quality, personal relationships within the church among members will be extremely high. Guests will also feel a greater need to make a meaningful connection when they visit a church.Â A society accustomed toÂ personalizationÂ may reject a one-size-fits-all mass approach to reaching them. People will want and expect to be treated as an individual not a number.
- Knowledge Management. The focus of management attention will shift from rules and processes to innovation and customer service.Â Instead of systems designed to manage a group collectively, management will be able to focus more on the individual. Again, this reiterates that Churches will need to beÂ better equipped to meet people’s needs individually instead of relying on policies, procedures, or tradition. This means that Churches will also need to recognize the importance of innovation and creativity and learn how to nurture those traits in their staff.
Of course, much can happen in fifteen years.Â These trendsÂ may or may not become a true reality. However, consider what changes your ministry would need to make if the world does shift in this direction.
Food for thought.