Featured Member of the Week: Bradford Singleton
What’s your name?
Where do you serve, what is your title and how long have you served there?
I’m the Executive Pastor at Northwood Church in Summerville, SC.
I grew up at Northwood, but worked at a mega church for four years after college. Then I helped plant a church for a year and a half before coming back to NW.
TL;DR. I’ve been there 7 years
How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t go to church?
(Sometimes it’s hard to describe to the people who do go to our church!)
I help our Pastor’s vision to flow out to all the departments.
What were some of the things that you experienced that shaped the way you approach your work?
First, when I worked at Seacoast I was given an amazing platform right out of college. I was never beaten up or called out for a mistake, but I was encouraged consistently. I try to encourage our team to try new things and follow through on ideas. We cant be afraid to test things and see what happens.
Second, When working for the church plant I realized that people in smaller churches are the real ministry heroes. You can’t be a specialist in a church of 150-200 you have to be a generalist/student/hustler. I try to always be learning new things about areas that might be outside me usual responsibilities. This has also helped me save the church money sometimes when I can handle something like setting up our upgraded WiFi network instead of bringing in an outside company, or when our photographer and worship leader teamed up to learn how to master Squarespace so we could bring out website in house.
What’s the one thing you wish people knew about your job?
That everything we do as a church communicates something. It isn’t just the design of the worship guide or the website. It is also the joy of the parking team, and the concern shown by family ministry worker for a nervous guest that communicates what we are really about. I think someone said we will be “known by our love for each other”, right?
What is the one tool for your job that you can’t live without and why?
Easily my iPhone because I have real problem with inattentiveness, so I use it to stay on track with what’s most important instead of being a whirlwind of random activity.
What is the biggest mistake that you see churches making when it comes to communications and marketing?
Putting the WHAT before the WHY.
This happens in a lot of different ways, but one example is when churches copy a method from another church without understanding why that church does that thing.
Who is someone that you look to up in the church communications world?
Mostly I’m looking to the next group of people coming up. I’m 34, so I want to know what a 24yo or even 14yo are up to. How do they view church today? I think I have a ton to learn from the next generation.
Thanks Bradford for hanging out with us and being a FANTASTIC member of the Church Communications Community! We appreciate and see all the hard work you’re doing for the Church.