Graduate School of Business


Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


John Farlik


church leaders, project management




As a sector of the nonprofit industry, churches strive to execute the mission, realize the vision, and accomplish the strategic objectives established by their leaders. Comprising pastors, elders, and deacons, church leaders are responsible for the spiritual guidance of the congregation and performing as business managers of the organization. Specifically, church leaders are responsible for managing the unique events or special operations of their organizations, aligning them with vision and mission of the organization. A literature review revealed significant challenges among church leaders in their performance as business managers. This qualitative, multiple-case study sought to obtain information of the knowledge, skills, and abilities of church leaders in managing the projects executed by their organizations. The primary data collection method for the research study consisted of interviews with 13 church leaders from Virginia, Mississippi, and Texas. Emergent themes developed from the responses included planning, coordinating, organizing, commanding, and controlling. The study concludes that church leaders have knowledge of the emergent themes. Opportunities for development exist for church leaders in their skills and abilities for activities involved in the areas of planning, commanding, and controlling. These findings arise from a comparison to previous literature and relationship to the conceptual framework. The results of the study contribute to the body of literature on church leaders and project management.

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