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You Won’t Succeed in 2017 Unless You Do This…

goal setting 2017
Written by Paul Steinbrueck

Do you have hopes and dreams for 2017?

Of course you do.

But there’s a big difference between wishful thinking and making our dreams a reality. As Steve Keating says…

We seldom fulfill our dreams until we turn them into a goal and develop a plan to achieve them. -Steve Keating


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Here at OurChurch.Com we’re in the midst of strategic planning for 2017. In our strategic planning process, we set 4 types of goals. These 4 types of goals, are universal. They can be applied to any kind of organization as well as personal goal-setting.

4 Types of Goals to set for 2017

1) Objectives – Objectives are broad goals like connect with people in our community, serve the poor, increase sales, or become a better parent. They define what you want to accomplish but not how.

2) Projects – Projects goals are the “how;” they’re specific things you’re going to do to accomplish your objectives. For example, if one of your objectives is “connect with people in our community,” your project goals might be 3 outreach events, 2 community serving events, offer an evangelism training seminar, make our website mobile-friendly and optimize our website for search engines.

3) Processes – Process goals are also how you’re going to achieve your objectives. But while projects goals are achieved when the project is complete, process goals are ongoing activities. Some examples of process goals are send follow-up cards to new church visitors every Monday, update the website every Tuesday, write a weekly blog post or post new content to Facebook four times a week.

4) Metrics – Metrics are the specific data you’re going to track and the specific number you want to reach to indicate success. Numerical goals are things like increase sales by 10%, reach 1,000 website visitors a month by the end of the year, or 200 interactions on Facebook a month.

A note about metrics… they are controversial.  A lot of Christians, especially church leaders, don’t like metrics or numerical goals because they are outcome goals, and God is largely responsible for outcomes. If that’s how you feel, I understand and respect that.  Feel free to share your view on that in a comment.

Regardless of your perspective on metrics, the other 3 types of goals – objectives, projects and processes – are all a matter of discerning, “What is God calling us to do?

If we don’t pray about these things, ask God for guidance and write down where we sense him leading us, we have a tendency to get distracted, lose our way, or forget exactly what God has called us to do.


  • Have you set 2017 goals for your organization? Why or why not?
  • Which type of goals are you and your organization setting this year?

About the author

Paul Steinbrueck

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck.


  • Great, this type of article generally comes in handy. I have searched all the text. I think I learned something from. Especially, I like: If we don’t pray about these things, ask God for guidance and write down where we sense him leading us, we have a tendency to get distracted, lose our way, or forget exactly what God has called us to do. Thank you for the valuable writing.

  • Hi, Paul. I like your clarification about different types of goals. I’ve not read or heard your perspective elsewhere, so you’ve introduced me to a deeper understanding of goals. I find your categorization helpful to my thinking. Currently, I see goals in the following progression from big picture to little picture: life purpose & mission > vision > goals > projects > tasks.

    You’ve added to my appreciation that processes are a type of goal. I love to develop and implement workflow processes for automation of those annoying repetitive tasks. Bringing increasing order to chaos is life-giving work for me because I see order as the character of God and therefore a Kingdom way of living. Bringing order to chaos is redemptive—order is a result of Christ’s cross.

    For 2017

    Objective Goals:

    1.Move from the Pacific NW to central Florida—currently on the road making that happen
    2. Find a place to live while I have no regular income
    3. Find a place to live in exchange for labor; grow food
    4. Seek out distinctly spiritual Christian community
    5. Re-establish English & communication mastery training for our children
    6. Erect a new family-based enterprise
    7. Get published
    8. Training for public speaking and performance

    Projects Goals:

    1. Identify communication channels in Brooksville, FL
    2. Attend Frank Viola’s Scribe 2017
    3. Correspond with believers in central Florida who value the ministry of T. Austin-Sparks
    4. Attend Michael Port’s, Heroic Public Speaking in Ft. Lauderdale

    Process Goals:

    1. Continue to invest in a vibrant prayer life that receives answers
    2. Discern where and in who is the Spirit of Christ working?
    3. Who are lovers of liberty?; lovers of what is good about America?
    4. Who is receptive to displacing socialism with the self government of Christ?

    Metric Goals:

    I’ll have to spend time thinking on this level of sepcificity and it seems good to work through that process.

    I’ll print out your post and read it to the family to soliciate their feedback. Types of goals is a good topic for strategic planning and year-end review. Thank you, Paul, for putting thought to this and contributing to the leading of my family for exercising the Law of Liberty.

    • Hi Barry, way to go an setting big goals for 2017! And thanks for sharing your goals in such depth here. I live about 90 miles south of Brooksville, so maybe after you relocate we can connect in real life.

      • Appreciate the open hand and invitation for Christian fellowship, Paul.

        My family is starting from ground zero of rebuilding our family economy and local friendships. A hard reset if you will, and no entanglements with the affairs of this life (think The Matrix). Yet, advancing a witness for Christ that salts and displaces this present darkness—yet not without great cost in the present.

        Yes, I’m all for in-person Christian community and general audience community in the pursuit of distinctly good endeavors.

        I’m following you on Twitter now so I can send you a private message when it makes sense for me to get together.

        Keep up a good work for what is Great about America—the Liberty to govern yourself. That is a fruit of Christ’s gospel in the American Union of Free and Independent States.

  • This is true that there is a big difference between wishful thinking and making our dreams a reality. After reading this article seriously I have become conscious for setting my goals for new year and also can get that enthusiasm and energy that was inside me few years ago for achieving targets. Thanks Paul for recalling.

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