10 Valuable Lessons From Disney For Your Children's Ministry

This year over 140 million people will walk into a Disney park.  The vast majority of these people will be kids and their parents.

Disney knows how to connect with families.

There are many valuable lessons children's ministries can learn from Disney.  Many of the things they do can be translated right into children's ministry.

I know what you are thinking...if I had Disney's budget, I could attract a lot more kids and families.  But I want you to think about this.  Disney started with no budget.  Walt had times when he was completely broke.  In fact, there was one period of time when he had to eat dog food just to survive.  But he discovered how to connect with kids and families and from that came his success.

You see...these lessons are not about your budget size...but rather about the size of your passion and commitment to learning how to effectively connect with kids and families.

In the book, If Disney Ran Your Children's Ministry, you get an inside look at 10 ways Disney reaches kids and their families.  These are principles that can translate into any ministry.  Here's a quick glance at the 10 lessons.

Cast Vision Like Disney - Walt was a visionary leader.  When everyone else saw an empty plot of land, he saw a castle, a jungle ride, flying elephants, a haunted mansion and more.  Great ministries originate from a great vision.  It's about looking beyond what is and seeing what can be.

Construct Teams Like Disney - Disney is a great experience for families not just because of the rides, attractions, shows, fireworks or parades.  The "pixie dust" is the great team of people who have been enlisted and equipped to interact with and serve kids and families.  A vital part of building a great children's ministry is building a great volunteer team.

Culture Like Disney - A great culture (great environment) doesn't happen by accident.  It is created by carefully formed core values.  It's about how you do what you do.  One key part of creating a great culture is how you bring new volunteers on your team.  As you share with new volunteers the history of the ministry, the vision for the ministry and the core values of the ministry, you can help them adopt and become part of that culture.

Creativity Like Disney - You may not think you are creative.  But I believe there is creativity in every person.  It's just waiting to be tapped into and drawn out.  As you collaborate and dream with other people, you will be amazed at the creative ideas that will emerge.

Cool Environments Like Disney - The physical space of your ministry makes a difference.  A good children's ministry space will make your children's ministry appear even better that it is.  A run down children's ministry space will make your children's ministry appear worse than it really is.  One of the best investments a church can make is in creating cool physical environments for kids.

Capture Kids' Attention Like Disney - Today's kids are not yesterday's kids.  They have very short attention spans and it takes skill to grab their attention and keep it.  One of the things you can do is use visual object lessons when you are teaching.  Here's an example.  If you're telling the story about the devil tempting Eve as a snake, you can have a rubber snake in your hands.

Connect with Families Like Disney - Disney helps families create memories that will last a lifetime.  They help families celebrate special moments like birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, graduations and more.  You have the opportunity to help families celebrate spiritual milestones like baby dedication, baptism, graduations and more.

Customer Service Like Disney - Did you know Disney has some secret rules their employees follow that help them provide families with great costumer service?  Rules like "never saying I don't know" when asked a question.  Another one is pointing with two fingers instead of one, since pointing with one finger is offensive in some cultures.  The experience you give first-time guests will largely determine if they return or not.

Commitment to Excellence Like Disney - Take a close look and you'll see that Disney is committed to doing the small things well.  Excellence comes from paying attention to the details.  When you do the little things well, it shows families you believe they are worth the effort.

Change Like Disney - Disney constantly evaluates what they are doing.  They change or drop what's not working when needed.  While keeping some of their timeless classic rides and attractions, they also add new, relevant things to keep their parks fresh and exciting.  Children's ministries must realize that we should honor the past and learn from the past, while looking to the future.

If you'd like to gain lots of fresh ideas and insight from Disney for your ministry, we'd like to invite you to join us for the live webinar "If Disney Ran Your Children's Ministry."  It's being held Thursday, November 2nd.

Join us for the live event that will help you take your ministry to the next level.  Below is more information and you can register now at this link.  Spots are limited and are filling up fast, so register today.  As an added bonus, you will receive an instant download of the book "If Disney Ran Your Children's Ministry."  It sells for $9.99, but is yours for free when  you register.