Structuring Communications for Your Church’s Unique Mission and Values | Alex Bryjak

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Our guest Alex Bryjak shares with us how she learned to structure communications for her church’s unique mission and values.

Podcast Transcription

SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Jason Hamrock: Well, Alex, welcome to the show. Thanks for joining us. How are you doing today?

Alex Bryjak: I’m doing pretty well, thank you. I’m happy to be here. I’m excited.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah, glad to have you here. And I to learn all about you, and so our audience can learn about you. But you live in Chicago, right? And it’s November in Chicago. The weather’s nice, though, you said.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, yeah, the weather’s not too bad. It’s always a roller coaster of weather, you never really know what you’re going to wake up to. But it is beautiful today, so we will take it.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah, the Windy City, you bet, I love it. Okay, so you’re the Comm Director at Mission Church. Tell us a little bit about Mission Church, and tell us a little bit about yourself and your role.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah. Mission Church has been around for 12 years, we just had our 12-year anniversary. We were a portable church for most of that time, we met in a middle school, and then we graduated and met in a high school. And then about four years ago, we purchased a La-Z-Boy, it was a La-Z-Boy furniture store if you know what that is, and we turned it into a church. And it’s in Bloomingdale, so we’re like on a non-traffic day, 45 minutes out of the city. But the unique thing about where Mission is, and a lot of our heart is around the ten, that’s what we call it, it’s the ten surrounding towns. And so the interesting part about the ten is that it’s generational, people who are born here stay here or they come back, you know, they go and live in the city for a little bit for those 20s, and then they come back and they raise their family here. So it’s really multigenerational here, and we see that reflected in our church, which is really cool. But yeah, so I have been coming to Mission since I was 18, so that’s ten years now. So I’ve been around for a lot of the changes and the growth and the moves and all of those things, but I’ve been on staff here for five years.

Jason Hamrock: Okay. So you’re the communications director?

Alex Bryjak: Yes.

Jason Hamrock: Tell us how that all happened.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, so I have no formal training, which I don’t think is too rare in the church world, but working in a church was never what I thought I would be doing, but I would never trade it for the world. I was just kind of one of those super volunteers, I was on my way to becoming a professional wedding photographer. I still do that, and I was doing that at the time, I was just kind of starting it. And so, you know, usually, when you’re in that creative field, you’re wearing a lot of hats. So I was volunteering at Mission as a photo volunteer, doing some social media for them, and it just kind of got to that gray area of like, you’re doing a lot, maybe we should pay you. And so they hired me on for just ten hours a week, and just over the past five years that’s just grown, and now I’m here full time and running the communications team. And so it’s been such a whirlwind, and I’ve learned so much, I mean, I’ve literally just been self-taught through all of this stuff, but it’s been such a gift to be a part of this team.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Yeah. I can really relate to you because I did the same thing. We both pioneered this new position in the churches we served at, and you’re actively involved with it. So, I want to hit on a few things, and this will be really relevant to our audience because a lot of our audience are comm directors. But, you know, there are also all kinds of other leaders who pay attention to our podcast, so thanks for listening. But, you know, I think it’s really important for us to kind of learn, and this will be really helpful for some people. So just talk to me about when you got started, you know, going back, would you change any of the methods that you did to kind of build this up, or what were some of the pain points that you just kind of caught on early on as you’re getting started?

Alex Bryjak: Yeah. So when I got on staff, there was like the communications director before me, and so I was under him and we just had different skills in that he was the creative type, he was so good at all the graphic design and the video and all of that stuff. And I am just so type A, I’m a one on the Enneagram, like, I really just helped make sure things got done, make sure that our mission, vision, and values were at the forefront of it. And so where so much pain came in and so much learning came in was when he left the team to go work at another church, it’s all good, but, you know, things happen. His family moved to Colorado, which it’s hard not to move to Colorado, that seems to be everybody’s favorite thing to do. But that was just so jarring for me, you know, for a lot of reasons. Of one, no formal training. Two, I was like 23 years old and had no idea what I was doing, to begin with in life, much less in this position at a church. And so that was when my role really expanded and when I went full time and I had to learn Illustrator and Photoshop and all these things I had never done before, Premiere, like literally everything Adobe I had never touched before because I wasn’t the one necessarily creating things, I was really just like facilitating a lot of it. And it was like literally at the beginning of Covid, so it was just a ripple effect of a lot going on. But it ended up being, for as stressful and as hard as those first six months were when he left and I was just kind of on my own, I would not be where I am today, I wouldn’t know these things. I think it just grew my leadership in so many ways of just like, I don’t have a choice, I kind of just have to do this, this is on me now, which is a huge learning curve and a huge responsibility. But I think I just kind of rose to the occasion because I had to and I grew so much in it. But yeah, so it was a weird learning curve because I just, I wasn’t expecting it, and I wouldn’t change it because it ended up being so great and I learned so much from it.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Sometimes I think that when you’re just forced into the fire, you know, it’s either you accept it or you get out. You know, if you can’t take the heat. So it sounds like you brought it on and you just kind of plowed through and made it all happen. So today, you’ve been in this for five years, and I know that you’re part of the Church Communications Facebook group. If you’re not a part of that, people, you should probably join it. Go to Facebook and search for church communications, it’s a private group, it’s like 33,000 people strong.

Alex Bryjak: I love the group, it is so helpful.

Jason Hamrock: Tell me about your involvement there.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, I love the group. I love like sharing the things that our church is doing to show other people different options of things they can be doing. So one of the…I went a little viral on the page like two years ago because it was like, you know, the heart of live streaming. Everybody’s hiring, they’re trying to figure out things to make their church livestream. And I posted on there and I said, our church has stopped live streaming. Here is our two-minute welcome to Mission video, and how we are, and here’s our decision. And so that got a ton of feedback positive and negative, it was fun. But it was, I just love the group because it is great to just like obviously there’s so many different contexts. There’s so much from my city to the next. It’s so different, the people group you’re serving, and so it’s just a great way to learn from people and to also teach people in like a loving way, obviously. Like, I don’t know, I’m just giving you ideas, you don’t have to do anything with it. But I love to see other people’s ideas, I think it’s cool to see what other churches are doing. I ask so many questions on there. I say, show me your merch, I need some inspiration. Show me what you’re doing for Christmas, so it’s really fun to be a part of, and especially in a role where I am, for a lot of it, a one-woman show. It’s great to just like, have some people to bounce ideas off of.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah, totally, totally. Yeah, so speaking of that, so you just mentioned, and I’m really impressed because you had to learn all these Adobe products and that’s not easy, right, that takes time. And so you’re not only doing, you know, your comm director role, you’re also learning all the tools. So talk to me a little bit about that comm director role, what’s been one of the biggest, you know hurdles. Or maybe you can share with somebody who’s younger than you, that they’re kind of, they’ve just started out in this seat. What’s one thing you had to learn, and over five years you’ve kind of had to learn how to master this? Is it in leadership or is it delegating or what’s been something you’ve had to learn?

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, I think what I hear a lot from people who are in similar roles as me in churches, is it the hard part about doing communications for a church is you’re everybody’s person, like everybody’s coming to you with their thing, and their thing is the most important thing. And so it really is a balancing act of what has priority, what needs to be done today, and what can wait until after this Sunday. So, so much of it is just a delegation of, yeah, maybe they’re all your tasks, but you need to delegate your own tasks of just like, okay, when can I do this, you know, what takes priority? And so something that our church has done that has been really helpful, about two years ago, every team sat down and made a huge list. We had these huge pieces of paper and we wrote a list of everything we did that year, whether it was the kid’s team, the high school team, or the communications team, every single thing we did that year, every event, every project, every paper we handed out. And then we went down the line and answered like 5 to 7 questions about if they’re really lining up with our mission, vision, and values to help people find and follow Christ, to see a movement of Jesus in the ten in our lifetime, did people gather, grow or go because of this task that we did? And I think just organizationally from the top down that gave all of us such a great lens of what really is important, because yes, there are a lot of fun things, there’s a lot of great ideas, but not every great idea has to get done. And I think when you really have, which I think is something I am grateful for, and truthfully, I had no part of, it’s really our leadership. They have such a clear direction of where we’re going as a church, our mission, vision, and values, and so it gives us such a great lens to see what work is the most important work. And so I think, as I said, I didn’t come up with that, organizationally from the top down, they’ve instilled that in us. And so that has helped me so much in my job just to say, hey, I love this idea for this kids event thing, whatever, but just really getting to the heart of like, why are we doing it? Are we doing it because it’s a fun, great idea that you saw on TikTok and other students liked it? That’s great, I love that, but also at the same time, is this furthering our vision as a church? Are more people entering the kingdom because of this? And so I think there’s just, you really need to, you got to see the end in sight.

Jason Hamrock: Well, I love that example. And what a great exercise to go through, and you’re right, I mean that had to be from the leadership down. So if you’re not in a leadership spot and you’re listening to this, there’s a way to lead up. To say, can we look over 2023 and figure out all the stuff we did? And you can make an argument, right, as strong as you want to say, oh, that aligned, but really, did it? Not that you shouldn’t do it, it’s maybe you just have to rethink the strategy to make sure it does align with our mission, and our vision, and our core values, and what we’re trying to help our people do. And plus, it gives you clarity as the comm director, it helps you understand maybe the tiers of what gets promoted and how big and when and all that which gives that structure that you kind of like, I think you like to thrive in the structure zone.

Alex Bryjak: I love structure.

Jason Hamrock: I’m the other way around. I’m like, I like structure, but I like to operate over here in the corner a little bit.

Alex Bryjak: Oh no.

Jason Hamrock: I’m a little bit of both. Yeah, because people need it, right? It’s the best approach to being a comm director. So, wow, that was a great exercise for you then, it really gave you and your department a lot more clarity in terms of the pecking order of who gets what.

Alex Bryjak: Yes, exactly.

Jason Hamrock: Wow. Okay. So have you been able to grow your team, or are you a one-person team?

Alex Bryjak: So, the way our staff has been structured has been the creative team is one thing, so we’ve kind of grouped together worship, production, and communications, and so that has kind of just been a team. And so the guy who leads worship and was like our worship director, really, he functions a lot as like our creative director, he very much like sees the whole vision, whether that’s like from a Sunday programming kind of thing. And so he really helps me a lot in just kind of like I said, I wasn’t trained in these things, I’m really more of the like structure, make sure it gets done kind of person. But I’ve had to do the design just because it’s on my plate and that’s great and I’ve made it work. I wouldn’t say it’s the strongest thing I bring to the table, so he has helped me a lot in that area of just another person to look at things. He kind of has a little bit more background in that stuff, and so he’ll help me just like make sure those things are in line and work with our brand. And he does all of our videos, so something with communications that I don’t do is our video. I take photos, but video is not my thing, and so he does all of our video stuff. But yeah, otherwise as far as like, our website, social media, and marketing, all of that falls under my plate.

Jason Hamrock: Okay. Yeah. And that’s something you’ve had to learn, right, you’ve had to learn how to own those assets, those tools that you guys use? And then of course, all your other comm director stuff, you know, strategies and all the different, you know, the ministries that want promotions and all that, that kind of that falls underneath you.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah.

Jason Hamrock: What’s been your project management tool that you’ve used?

Alex Bryjak: So we use Base Camp, our whole staff uses it. I love it because I love a list, so I have everybody. And that was a big growing point for us of just, you know, from the 70-year-olds on our team who, you know, lead our 50-plus ministry, all the way down to, I mean, I’m the baby on staff. But for every ministry, it was just like some people email, some people call, some people text, some people, you know, and so we really had to streamline. Hey, I am trying to help all of you achieve the same thing, I want your people to know about what is going on, and I want to help you as well as I can, but in order for me to do that, you have to follow my system. I need you to go in and make me a to-do, I need a due date, I need to know who’s seeing it, and I need to know if we’re printing it in-house or if we’re sending it out, you know? It’s never going to be perfect, and I know that, but it has helped me a ton to keep everything that I need to do straight and have a system.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Well, that’s really, that’s great advice for anybody. And I’m a big fan of that by the way, you know, having those hallway conversations is fine, but that’s not the request, an email, a text message, uh uh, you got to go and fill out the form and give us all the details because that’s the only way it gets into the system. And, you know, you’re living that out so that if somebody does come to, you’re like, that’s great, but you make sure you follow the rules.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah. And that’s the thing too, once you put the plan in place and you have those conversations with everybody, then there’s something to go back to when they break the rules, I’m using quotations, and that’s going to happen, yeah for sure. But then it’s a learning moment of saying, hey, I would love to do that for you, but please do it this way next time, you know. So at least, once you have the rules, they can ask for forgiveness, but it’s good to have something to fall back on.

Jason Hamrock: It never ends. It never ends. And you know, I always saw the ministries as my clients, so to speak, right? And I knew that my biggest client was my lead pastor, and my second biggest client was the weekend service, because that’s just where church, everything happens on the weekend inside of church. But from there on down, I had all these clients, right, and my job was to serve them well. I never wanted to say no, I wanted to say, well, I may not be able to do that, but we can do this because you’re always wanting them to win and you’re a team. So even though they’re a client, we’re on the same team, but it’s kind of how I saw it. I’m sure that’s kind of how you’re, where you’re leading into that area.

Jason Hamrock: So let me ask you a question because I always love to talk about this because, at Missional Marketing, we really help churches with the sort of the top of funnel or reaching people outside the church. We love people in the church, but it’s always about the one who doesn’t know Jesus kind of. So how much of your time gets kind of divvied up between that front door and making sure people are aware of the mission and they’re walking through, versus are in the seats, and you’re trying to help disciple them?

Alex Bryjak: I wish I could focus on the latter more, I wish I could focus more on the people outside. Obviously, it’s hard in the whirlwind of just we got to serve the people that are coming here. So I would say, you know, the majority of the time I’m working on ministry stuff and helping the weekends happen, and I think that’s a normal part of the job. But the interesting thing about Mission is we don’t do small groups, we do missional communities. And so the short version of that is we do something, we do a growth track, and it starts with alpha, which a lot of people are familiar with. Alpha is all over the world, so we start with Alpha, and that is like our greatest invitation, we do it twice a year. And this past term, I believe we had 350 people in Alpha. So it’s really well received, a lot of people come, and more than a lot of people coming, we see a lot of salvations, we see a lot of baptism out of it. And so it’s really a gift to be able to do that and just to have that tool.

Alex Bryjak: So we do Alpha, and then we do the partner course, which is really similar to like becoming a member at a church, we call it being a partner at our church. And this course really just shows people what it’s like to be a part of our church. And in there they learn the importance of inviting, giving, and volunteering because that is how you are part of a church, those are the three things that will help you feel part of this church family, and so that’s what the partner course is all about.

Alex Bryjak: And then after the partner course is the planter course, and this is where we teach people to go to be a disciple and to be the church, not just at the church. Our whole church really stands on the verse of Jesus’s last words to his disciples, to go and make disciples. And so during the planter course is when we help people kind of, it’s kind of sad in a lot of ways, reverting back to what church was supposed to be, to what Jesus was teaching us all these years ago, of it’s not meant to just be a me, me, me thing, we want people to know the love of Jesus. And so to just be kind to your neighbor, to just be where you’re at with a new intention, to just show people the love of Jesus, to always have an answer for the hope that you have. And so through the planter course, we launch Missional Communities, we’ve got about 50 missional communities right now.

Alex Bryjak: And so, you know, when somebody walks through the doors of Mission to go back to your question, so when somebody walks through the doors of Mission, they go to Guest Central, they meet them, they get their free mug, and most people’s first question is, how do I get plugged in with a small group? What are your women’s ministries? All these things, we don’t do any of that, and we’re straight up with them, and we tell them about the growth track and that our hope would be that one day they can join a missional community so that they can go and tell people about the love of Jesus. And so it’s not like, it’s very much who we are as a church. When you walk in, you know that, we’ve got an aircraft carrier on our wall because it’s a great conversation starter of this is the kind of church that we are, we’re an aircraft carrier. Come here, it’s important to be here, be on this ship, get fueled up, and then go out and go out into your neighborhoods and your communities. And so to answer your question, yes, most of my job is about the weekend gatherings and so much of that, but our church is about so much more than that. And so to the long and the short is like our vision is so clear and upfront, that it is a big part of my job, but I don’t have to do a lot for it because, from the top down, we are just always communicating, our hope for you is that you would be a part of this missional community and share the love of Jesus with other people.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Well, I love your answer, because I love the structure of it. I love the idea that you know, the only way that the baton of faith gets handed off to the next person is you and me, it’s the church, it’s the people. It’s the only way, you know, we have to hand it off, and if we don’t hand it off, you know, the church stops to grow, it doesn’t grow. But what you’re doing, though, is you’re equipping your own people to do your job, basically. You’re tooling them up and giving them the vision of this is what’s expected when you make this, you know, your church. A church I know about is they call it ownership, they don’t have members, they have owners.

Alex Bryjak: Oh, that’s cool.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Because you own your faith, you own what you do with that faith, and this is just a building that you give to, so we’re all owners of it. So our job is to, you know, live it out well. And so I love your approach to that, not that you wouldn’t want to maybe promote some things here or there, but using your own people to be the ambassadors, to be the brand evangelists that are going to go out and share and invite and bring is just really strong. So kudos to your leadership team to make that the posture and the approach to how you’re going to do things, it’s good.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, I am very lucky to work under a very clear vision because I know that that’s missing in so many churches. And I’ve talked to a lot of people who do my job in other churches, and I am very lucky that they’ve got such a clear structure, it makes my job a lot easier.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. It does. Yeah. A lot of other comm directors, they don’t have that kind of mentality, the leadership doesn’t have that mentality necessarily. It’s always just about, you know, people at the church and that kind of stuff and moving those people to get into a small group and working on their faith, which is great, I love that, but it’s a different mindset, you know? And so I’m always encouraging churches, as a former communication director myself, of going get your people the tools they need, right, and let them go and invite and bring their friends and families. And I’ll even work with churches to kind of say, hey, we’re going to target this neighborhood, you tell the people who live in that neighborhood, here’s what we’re doing as a church to support you. We’re going to run some ads and do a direct mail piece or whatever it is, but we need you to go do your job, that’d be kind of a cool approach as well. So five years you’re into this gig and you’ve learned a lot and know you mentioned that, you know, the Church Communications Facebook group is where you really hone in. What kind of advice do you give to somebody who’s new to the church world in terms of communications? Like what would you drop on them?

Alex Bryjak: I think, so when I came in, I was gifted to be able to take the reins from everyone, so as far as all of the Facebook pages, all of the emails, and I was able to kind of reconstruct those things to be one voice. So I think kind of going back to what we were talking about, like, what are the most important things, what gets pushed on stage, what gets pushed on the email, what’s get what gets pushed here? I think in the same vein, I think it can be messy or confusing when there are so many voices coming out of your church, so many emails going to people, whether it’s because they volunteer or because they have a preschooler, you know, whatever, so I am really all about clarity and reducing noise. And I think it’s really normal that churches can be really noisy. I’m using quotations again, of just like there’s a lot of information going out, and yes, people care about it and they want to know what your upcoming event is and they want to know about what’s going on, but how can you simplify that for somebody? So for example, I had always wanted to do this, but I was kind of always just afraid of the work. And so about two years ago we were sending four like mass emails a week, one for kids, like if you have a kid, one if you have a student, so a middle schooler or a high schooler, one for our 50 plus ministry, and then just one all mass church email, and I was overwhelmed by that. And I thought it was too much because there are people who fall into multiple of those categories, and I just didn’t want them to get all those emails every week because I wanted them to, like, really pay attention to the really most important thing. So what did, we use Planning Center, which I know is really popular with churches, and what I did is I basically segmented, and I made it a custom email. It took a ton of work on the back end to get all of the data correct, and obviously, there, you know, there are still flaws in it. But my goal, so now, instead of sending four emails a week, I send 13 emails a week, but the user is only getting one email. So I’ve got all the different formulas of if you’ve got a kid in a middle schooler, you’re getting this email. If you’ve got a high schooler and a middle schooler, you know, whatever. So that’s just one example of one of the ways that I have, I didn’t simplify my job, I made my job harder, but I simplified it for the end user because I really, you know, as in communications, yes, people need to know what’s going on, but I want it to be in the best way possible and in the simplest and cleanest way. So I think the work that you can do to make that happen for the end user is really important and will serve you and help people take their next steps and help them really know what’s going on and what’s most important for them.

Jason Hamrock: That is valuable advice. When you started talking, I thought, oh, you’re talking about you guys are a house of brands instead of a branded house, right? A lot of churches do that, they have all these voices and all these different brands going on, and it’s just like, it drives me nuts.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, it’s hard.

Jason Hamrock: Having a branded house where it’s like one voice, and it makes it easier for your people, right? I get one email a week, I can glance down at the things that are relevant to me. Yeah, well done on that. Because, you know, if you as a comm director, if you don’t have that, if you’re not doing what Alex is doing, pay attention. Like that would be a phenomenal exercise to send out one email, so all ministries were talking, and we’re collecting that, so we can do one email to our users, so they’re not overwhelmed. Imagine you know the missions in the care team, and if you want that stuff now you’ve got like bunches of emails coming at you, it becomes noise after about the third week, let alone two years in, I’m like, I wouldn’t even pay attention to it.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, exactly. So that’s why, it was it was a ton of work for me, but I think the payoff was well worth it.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. And so using Planning Center you’re able to segment those those emails. How did you get the ministries on board?

Alex Bryjak: Well, when I started five years ago, truthfully, I don’t think I was the one who fought for it because I was new and had no idea what I was doing. So I think someone else above me fought for, hey, you’re not allowed to send emails anymore, and then it became my job. And it’s worked, I think when you’re working with ministries, and I love everyone I work with, but obviously, there’s different personalities, there’s different feelings and emotions behind that, and so it’s really just working with them, not against them. It’s understanding their heart for what they’re trying to communicate, what they want their people to know, and meeting them in the middle. Sometimes I send stuff that I don’t really like, but it’s important to them and they see that as important, and that’s okay, like we can we can compromise in that. And I think they, at the end of the day, they also want people to pay attention to what they’re talking about, and they want people to know what’s going on. And so, you know, whether the compromise comes with, well, maybe that’s not for the email, let’s just push that on social. You know, there’s always those kinds of conversations too, of just, you know, redirecting.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, you know, the thing that I caught, what you just said there was, you have to be the champion of it. You may not be the inventor of it, and that’s okay, I actually advocate for letting your leaders lead. You might be leading up to say, hey, we need this or we need that, or I just watched this podcast and we’ve got to change the methods of how we’re doing emails. It isn’t you being on an island trying to be the hero, I wouldn’t advise you to do that, and like you didn’t do that, and that’s that’s really, really strong. You know, somebody else, a leader made that decision and you got to champion it. But making sure you’re communicating that this would be really, really solid for our church, it would help us get more cohesive in our messaging and more branded to the person who’s receiving that. But having that conversation with the ministry coming from a younger, newer comm director, probably wouldn’t be as strong as the executive pastor or lead pastor saying that same thing.

Alex Bryjak: For sure. And as you were talking, I just thought, you know, if you’re in a position where that isn’t getting well received and they don’t love your idea, I would say make a compromise of, hey, let’s just try it for 3 or 4 weeks and I can see analytics. Let’s see what does better, let’s see what gets more link clicks, and just try it out. And maybe that will help you get the end result that you’re looking for, or maybe you’ll learn something and you’ll realize maybe the way we were doing it was better.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah. Surveys.

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, yeah, that’s true.

Jason Hamrock: Another survey, ask your people what they like to see, and that data, data is king in that space because it helps you make good decisions. Wow. Okay. So let’s land the plane here on this podcast, this has been really fruitful. Any, you know, walking away advice that you have for anybody that’s been listening here. What would you share? I mean, you’re at the beginning of your career, you know, and so far you’ve made a fantastic impact, that’s just what I can clearly see. What kind of advice would you give somebody?

Alex Bryjak: Thanks. I mean, I think my advice is something I’ve learned throughout the years is just, I’m a pretty, like, strongly opinionated person. And so I think especially when you’re taking away somebody’s emails or things like that or, you know, not liking an idea somebody has, I struggle with not just being pretty direct with people. And so I think just meeting them with love, I think it’s important to ask the why. I think that is something I have learned throughout the years, where if somebody has an idea for something that I’m like, not really getting, understanding the heart of what they’re trying to get across has helped me so much and has made it pretty clear of whether or not something is a good or bad idea, or at least then you can work together to get to the right result that you’ll both be happy with. And so that’s been really valuable for me, especially with certain staff members and people in our church, and so I think that’s really important. And also, I think at the end of the day, it’s really easy to get caught up in, man, that was so much work, or man, I’ve got so much ahead of me. Or sometimes when I’m talking to other people on staff and they’re having these really relational moments that I don’t really get to have because of the way my role is, I’m not necessarily meeting with a lot of people or pastoring a lot of people most of the time. But when I get to hear from large, like what my church is doing and the wins that people are having, maybe I didn’t have a direct, like, I didn’t help directly with that, but to know that the work I’m doing isn’t just for a social media post, the work you’re doing really does matter. And at large, your church is making a difference is really important to remember, especially on the hard days or the days when you mess up, or there’s a lot to do. Just to really know the why from the people you’re working with, and remember your why, remember why you’re working and doing the Lord’s work. And it really, you’ll be a lot better off having the right perception of it.

Jason Hamrock: Well, I’ll tell you, that’s a really wise and mature answer because it’s that posture of I’m first wanting to learn, and I’m going to ask questions. You know, why is this important? And instead of just walking in, going, I’m going to change things because I know it’s best because I’m the comm director, that’d be the last thing, well, that’d be the easiest way to get off the bus in my opinion. The way to help lead is just that posture of learning, and I want to understand. And so then you can move together and build harmony and teamness and get where you are right now, which is you guys have a good thing going on.

Jason Hamrock: Okay, how do people get a hold of you? Because I know that they may have some questions for you. What’s the best way to maybe find you in the Facebook group at Church Communications?

Alex Bryjak: Yeah, yeah. My name is Alex Bryjak, it’s spelled like it sounds, just don’t add a C in that Jack. You can find me on Instagram @Alex Bryjak, and also on Facebook, I would love to chat with you there. You can also email me, at Alex@wearemission.com. And yeah, I would love to talk to you guys more, I am always an open door. This was super fun, thank you so much for having me on, I really enjoy talking about this stuff and getting to share about all that God’s doing here in the little town of Bloomingdale.

Jason Hamrock: Yeah, the little town of Bloomingdale. Yeah. So for our listeners go to wearemission.com, check out the church, and get a hold of Alex. And thanks, Alex, thanks for being on the show today, and I really appreciate your time.

Alex Bryjak: Absolutely. Thank you so much.

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