CCM School of Leadership – Keys to Effective Communication

The CCM School of Leadership was created by Christ Church Manchester to train and equip those with a leadership gift to lead well wherever they are. Communication is a key aspect of our leadership, both with team members that we work with and with our congregation or wider organisation. It is crucial that we not only concisely and clearly get the message across but do so with respect, a positive attitude, and recognise the differences of the recipient. In this session, we will be looking at communication within leadership, sharing some tips and advice on how to communicate efficiently, effectively and helpfully. In this session, Tom O'Toole looks at some keys to effective communication.


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Communication Is the Leaders Responsibility

  • It is not just transmitting information - it is about making sure you are understood.
  • You need to take people on a journey with you.
  • The channel of communication is important.
  • You need to ask them what they have understood to make sure they have got it.
  • Timing is important.
  • Who says it is also important.


  • Voice is about the way something is communicated.
  • Lots of verses in Proverbs give guidance on how we communicate things.
  • Every church has a voice - it may or may not be thought-through and it may or may not be consistent.
  • The voice may be in tune or contrary to the vision. 
  • Voice will always express your church culture.


  • Channels are the different forms of communication you might use.
  • We need to choose the right channel of communication to get the message across.
  • You can sort these channels into a grid with Impersonal to Personal on the x-axis and In-Depth to Brief on the y-axis. 
  • Depending on you objective for the communication, choose a channel from the right quadrant. 
  • Start with personal and in-depth and use it for people who you want to involve in the process. There will be a group of people who you need to involve, and it isn't always the same group of people - you want to involve key leaders, people with ownership of specific areas and people with certain skills or knowledge that would be helpful.
  • The next quadrant is personal and brief (do this before impersonal and in-depth) which is about honouring people - they don't need to input, but you should let them know what you are thinking and it validates them to do so.
  • After this is impersonal and in-depth where you are informing people who are affected by the decision of all the details of what you are doing and why. Give a good amount of detailed communication to this group. 
  • Finally is impersonal and brief, which is advertising - you are getting the headline out wide. Most people don't want details but you are giving people a way of getting them if they want to.


  • You can't delegate voice.
  • Others can communicate for you but you need to train them in voice. 
  • The more personal the channel, the less you can delegate it.
  • For an event driven by somebody else, they may own all of the communication for it (as long as you have communicated authority to them - and it should replicate the senior leader's voice.


  • Not too early in the morning!
  • Think about how far out from the event you communicate it - it depends on how big an ask the event is.
  • When it is a long way out, don't overkill. Strategically hit it at the right moments without talking about it too much.
  • Give enough for those who want to plan ahead and not too much to bore others. 
  • A helpful tool is a communication calendar.
  • Also think about who needs to know in what order.