1st year contacts...

I'm starting another series which I'll add to over the year which will include ministry hints, tips and cool ideas I've picked up over the years and will continue to pick up this year... so on with the show.

Today I'm looking at first year contacts. This basically means approaching people on the campus to invite them to FOCUS during orientation week. I've been doing this for about 8 years now.

  • Pray... We don't do this enough. Pray both before and after making the contacts.
  • Be friendly... I've seen people get really uptight over the years. It makes more sense to relax be yourself. (You'll find other people will relax to).
  • Be sensitive to people's gifts... Some people don't have the gift for the gab. (They should still get involved doing things eg. sitting on the FOCUS table). In the past I've fallen into the trap of pushing people to do stuff they aren't comfortable in or gifted with. Often just having someone with you (who doesn't say much) can be great for moral support.
  • If you see someone you know, chat to them... I used to think this was bad cause I was there "just advertise FOCUS". This is a problem. We aren't robots we're people and in such a context one may miss the opportunity to chat with friends or friends of friends who may or may not be Christian. .
  • Have good non daggy promotional material... This keeps what you are advertising credible to both people handing out the material and the people receiving it.
  • If you have someone with you, always introduce them to people you know. "This is my mate Jolly I know him from FOCUS". This is great opportunity to let people know you are a Christian and can lead to a good conversation. (If you aren't introduced do it yourself) "Hey my name is Mike".
  • Less is more - I've found this a helpful rule but something I always have to watch. Using less words with more concise language to communicate. Also taking the time to say it slowly and clearly. Result? Clear communication.
  • If people look lost (many do during o-week) help em out it's the least you can do.
  • If University staff walk past... smile nicely don't approach them they have been asked many times in previous years.
  • Don't be there for too long... 3 hours while people are pumped (enthusiasm) is better than a mediocre 4 or 5 hour shift that drags into eternity.



Felicity Manning said... 2/23/2007 1:13 pm  

Hi Mike,
Great eye catching sign and in a prominant place at uni too! Hope it means lots of people attend FOCUS.

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