What the Church can learn from the UFC

November 21, 2011 — Leave a comment

UFC just had a huge live launch on Fox television. Countless millions tuned in to the Heavy Weight championship fight. There was much dialogue leading up to the main event. UFC president, Dana White, spent quality time explaining the philosophy behind the exciting sport that is MMA (Mixed Martial Arts). The sport is rapidly growing. They have come a long way.

UFC Brand

From very humble beginnings, with a more barbaric feel, the UFC is now widely considered to be the future of sports. Their fighters have been elevated to celebrity status; complete with lucrative contracts and quality brand endorsements. The UFC is very protective of their fighters’ health, both in compensating for medical bills and in instituting a practical rule system; consequently no combatant has ever suffered a severe or fatal injury.

Substance abuse is not tolerated even a little bit. Their fighter’s are extremely disciplined and fan friendly. Combat sports are here to take over.

Many raving fans are already a part of this tribe: millions in fact. The UFC brand wants a global influence. They are already in over 100 countries and counting. This is the new face of sports.

The Fox televised event went off with a bang. The heavyweight championship fight ended in a little over a minute with a powerful KO by the nnneeeeew heavyweight champion of the world.

Train the Tribe

However, there were not a few disgruntled fans. They questioned why this big moment would include an hour of dialogue and a minute of fighting? Fans of the sport were hoping for a little less talk and a lot more action. Why all the UFC speak on the sport and little actual fighting?

Dana White gave a clear reprimand to the unhappy tribal members. He wanted those in the know to understand that this event was for those that weren’t UFC fans. The target audience wasn’t the UFC radicals. This event was all about educating the public.

If they had gone live with an hour of battle, without explaining the rules and regulations: many would have no doubt been turned off. With the commentary preceding the event, and the prologue afterward, the viewing audience was entertained and educated.

Dana’s plan was genius.

The UFC tribe is still complaining.

This event wasn’t about them.

The UFC tribe is still growing.

The Church and Dana White

How many times is this tension felt in your local church? The members of your tribe have come to expect a certain level of production every service. Complete with Christianeze and top shelf content.

However, if you ever want to add new members to your tribe, Dana White’s tactics must be assimilated.

You must plan for brand spanking new people. Songs, service length, and sermon content should be prepared for the person who thinks that Goliath built the Ark with a little kid’s lunch.

The simplified service serves as a release valve for the pressure one feels when attending a church for the first time. Speak with non-religious lingo. Dress a little more casual. Worship a lot more vertical. Preach with clarity and simplicity. Love openly and graciously.

The tribal members may grumble a bit. Tribal members can act spoiled.

If your tribe is going to grow, you can’t let the griper and grumbler, direct the mission. Your best production team should run the simplified service. Your best teams should sing and serve. The clearest speaker should speak. The tribe should be excited.

This is how your tribe grows.

Selfish consumers kill the tribe vibe.

Dana White reprimanded his tribe.

Do we need the same scolding?