For the last year, I’ve pastored Crossroads Friends Church completely from a mobile office. It’s not a perfect solution, but it works for me. Here are 7 reasons that I would suggest every pastor try it at least for a season.
- Keep overhead costs down – This is the number one reason that most entrepreneurs do it. You don’t have to worry about keeping light bulbs in the lights if you don’t own them.
- Get out of the office – Tragically, it’s common for pastors to spend 40-70 hours each week locked in an office before preaching. Do you want to know your community? Do you want to know what they’re talking about during the week? Get in their world.
- Meet unchurched people – It always amazes me how often pastors tell their church to get to know their neighbors while the pastor knows no one outside of the church. Get to know someone who doesn’t know Christ and build a relationship with them.
- Accountability – This point is huge. In ministry, you are often meeting with people who are in difficult circumstances and scenarios. I know too many pastors who have met with people behind closed doors and fallen into sin; or they’ve been wrongly accused of indecency. If you office in a public space, you can still find a quiet place, but there’s no room for pushing moral boundaries, and there’s always a witness.
- It’s a digital age – Most pastors I know (myself included) are still tied very closely to their reference books (commentaries, Bible dictionaries, lexicons, etc.). But most of us already have access to these online. In fact, we have access to more resources for free through the internet than we have on our bookshelves.
- Save travel time – When you office in a coffee-shop, you’re already at the primary place where you would normally meet people. You don’t have to beat the traffic and you don’t have to worry about picking something up or dropping something off on the way or way back.
- Coffee – Most coffee-shops boast free wifi. You don’t have to office from a coffee-shop, but if you have the opportunity, why wouldn’t you? Coffee + Internet = Productivity
What other benefits can you think of?
Stay tuned for a post detailing some of the challenges of working from a mobile office.
These are all great points. When I was full time ministry, I had an office that didn’t have any windows. No matter how much I personalized it, I struggled to get anything creative done. It was a great place to plug away at repetitious tasks, such as printing, folding, stuffing, labeling, blah, blah, blah.
I found that I was most creative, productive and fulfilled when I spent time at a local coffee shop. As much as I liked Starbucks & Seattle’s Best, nothing compared to a local “mom & pop” shop. It was cozy, inviting and rewarding from a gospel perspective. I would spend 2-4 hours each morning and be more productive than than 8-12 hours in the office. I called it my “south office”. Everyone knew where to find me.
Today, I have a home office with a window, but it doesn’t satisfy like the mobile “social”, “relational” & “communal” coffee shop office. I miss those days. Thanks for sharing.
Local shops are the best. I LOVE Starbucks, but there’s nothing like a little family-owned & operated coffee shop.