Have an Elevator Pitch For Your Small Group Ministry

By Steve Gladen


The Elevator Pitch

1. Keep it short. Be succinct. An adult’s attention span is eight seconds, so be sure to give just enough information (and more importantly perhaps the right information) so that after only hearing a sentence or two, someone knows why you do what you do with your life.

3. Pitch your heart, not your ministry. The reality is another ministry doesn’t matter that much to busy people. First of all, the ministry is about changed lives, so start with yours. Secondly, ministries and needs are relatively abundant. Instead of talking about your ministry, show your heart – the “why” you love your ministry – rather than some intangible concept or a future goal.2. Have it tied to your “calling”. The objective of the first ten or fifteen seconds is to have your potential leadership want to listen to the next forty-five or fifty seconds differently, more intently than they would have otherwise.

4. Don’t forget the ministry. It’s easy to get so caught up in the details of your heart and call that you neglect to mention what you need. What is the vision, as an example? People don’t give to need, they give to vision.

5. Don’t overwhelm with technical or statistical terminology. While being able to tout one or two amazing and memorable phrases or figures can be useful, don’t fill your conversation with numbers or jargon.

6. Practice. Rehearse your “elevator pitch” so that when the opportunity to give it comes, you can deliver it smoothly. Remember, you only want people who are interested in your “why”.

7. Revise. As your small group ministry moves through various stages, be sure to update and refresh your “ask”. When seeking to build a strong small group ministry, remember it can be just as important to listen as it is to talk.

So, what’s my small group ministry elevator pitch?


Steve Gladen

Steve Gladen is Pastor of Small Groups at Saddleback Church, which sees over 30,000 people gathering weekly in 5,000 small groups. He's the founder of SmallGroups.net and travels widely to speak on the topic of small groups and healthy, biblical community. He is the author of several books including Small Groups With Purpose and Leading Small Groups With Purpose.