I have the excellent opportunity to attend the first of four “Accelerator” sessions (across the next 2 years!) with Leadership Network. We’re covering the topic of “Big Data” and how we use it to impact people.

A key question asked yesterday was simply, “Does data have a seat at the table” in your ministry? So I ask the same thing of you: Does data help you make decisions?

But in the world of college ministry, some ministries simply need to realize that data is available to be gathered. Yes, some organizations are really good at collecting data, but others – especially if overseers aren’t asking for it – may not attend here much. Data doesn’t just mean numbers – though they’re included – but also great pieces of info like “How students heard about us” or “What kinds of students are most likely to bring other students.”

And while data only matters inasmuch as we remember that it connects with people, examining and using the data available to you may indeed offer the next step of growth for your campus ministry.

(And if you need help figuring this out, ask some data-loving, data-studying students to help. Win win!)