Every year, VOUS Conference is an opportunity to bring more people on the journey we are all walking together. For 13 years, we've gathered to encounter God, be equipped by world-class leaders, and be empowered to walk in our purpose. With each passing year, our gatherings have grown larger than the last.
This year, we are launching VOUSCon — A New Iteration. We are just getting started with new meetings, workshops, and opportunities to connect. The only way to go on a journey is one step at a time, and if we're going somewhere new, we don't want to go alone.
As we launched VOUSCon, we recognized how important building a strong core team would be. Preparing for a gathering of this size requires collaboration between every department in our church. Our creative and operations departments are key players in building and equipping our teams as we walk the road to VOUSCon.
VOUS Church is led by staff but run by servant leaders, and VOUSCon is no different.
We started with a large goal — 1,000 servant leaders to help put on VOUSCon. This number allowed us to scale in strength, creating strong teams across all key areas. We based a large portion of our servant leader rollout on Passion City Church's volunteer model at Passion Conference. Their team was instrumental in guiding us through the process.
This year we knew we wanted to expand serving opportunities to people in and outside of VOUS. After all, conference has always been about the global church. We targeted three main categories:
- People who go to VOUS and serve on a team
- People who go to VOUS but are not on a team
- People who do not go to VOUS and are not on a team
These buckets defined all communication as we ventured on the road to VOUSCon.
With our three target segments for servant leaders in place, we were able to systemize our communications structure. In November, we launched the Servant Leader application process. The following diagram details the targeted communication funnel we leveraged for each audience.
More than just completing a task, our VOUSCon serve teams are the ambassadors of this experience. Together, we get to be the hosts, welcoming guests from around the world to VOUSCon 2023.
With that, we believe we ALL play a part in inviting people. We knew it was essential to activate our core team to help sell VOUSCon.
We are doing this through a campaign — #FillTheWatsco — by:
- Encouraging servant leaders to invite their friends and family with an exclusive promotion code that gives 10% off all tickets.
- Incentivizing participation with a referral program. Whoever refers the most tickets wins a free weekend stay at our partner hotel the weekend of VOUSCon.
Once we have servant leaders on board, we utilize our operations department to mobilize our teams.
Strong leaders are learners.
After VOUS Conference last year, our staff gathered for an extensive SWOT review of the entire experience (SWOT is an evaluation tool that assesses strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats). We wanted to discover what we did well and could do better as we started preparing for VOUSCon 2023.
This year, one area we wanted to improve in was our level of communication. As we began mapping the road to VOUSCon, we wanted to create as much clarity as possible for everyone involved. Whether staff or servant leader, we want each person to feel prepared and equipped as early as possible. We started with a macro view of VOUSCon and went micro to establish reasonable, accomplishable steps and timelines. Each month served as a mile-marker on the road to VOUSCon.
We kicked off with a general zoom call to start communications with our servant leaders. Since VOUSCon 2023 is open for anyone to serve from around the world, Zoom allowed us to connect with those located outside of South Florida. This meeting was focused on general information — an overview of expectations, serving times, and what VOUSCon will look like this year.
This month we hosted virtual department meetings. This created space for servant leaders to connect with their VOUSCon team, meet their staff oversights, and learn more specific information about the area they will be serving.
There were two important internal goals for March: finalize our team playbooks and confirm each team's leaders. Staff is using this month to get prepped so that we can equip our team leaders.
Our church operates on a seasonal calendar (you can read more on that here), and April is one of our off months. Each department is utilizing this month to have touchpoints between staff and team leaders to communicate necessary details.
Our final month of meetings. Each department has team-specific meetings that will be run by our team leaders, creating space to ask questions and connect with team members.
When June rolls around, we'll reach our final destination. Our final mile-marker is the prayer night that happens the night before VOUSCon begins. More than a meeting with each other, this is a place to meet with God. Think of it like painting a wall — before you paint, the wall is prepared with a coat of primer. Prayer is our primer, preparing our spirits to encounter the Lord. It's a powerful night of worship and intercession. In just a few short months, when you take your seat in the Watsco Arena, you can trust that the space you've entered has been primed for the presence of God.