Many organizations in both the profit and not-for-profit arenas have discovered the benefits of strategic planning. An increasing number of churches and ministries are applying the principles of strategic planning (Clinton, Williams, & Stevens, 1995). In the 1990s, organizations including churches…are playing "Jeopardy" if they do not have strategic plans in place (Maes, 1998). This research examines to what extent strategic planning is being used among churches. Data was gathered through distribution of a survey mailed to churches in South Carolina. The pastor of each church personally completed the survey and returned it via e-mail, postal service, or fax. Initial findings indicate a positive relationship between formal planning and growth rates of membership and finances. The findings indicate that churches using strategic planning experience greater growth in both attendance and finances. (Revised and reprinted from Volume 2, Number 1 of the Coastal Business Journal)



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