Collaborative care for the choir

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At my church we have a choir of around 60-70 active singers, with another 20 or so listed on the rolls. We also have prospects, folks who are “on leave” as well as dealing with medical issues and travel…

AGGH! How do I keep up with all of the details of each and every member of my choir? And… even if I figure that out, how can we effectively and actively pursue new members? I continually feel behind, and we are going to start doing something about it.

Right now, we are trying out an online database tool called Airtable – what I like about it is that it gives me AND my section leaders a way to communicate specifically about choir members, and to spread the knowledge about what is going on in folk’s lives more effectively amongst our leadership team (we have one section leader per voice section). They also have a surprisingly good app for iPhones. My hope is that by using this tool we can stay in better and more frequent communication with our choir members and reach out quickly to new folks. I’ll try to update as we roll it out and use it in the real world.

Technical info – because this stuff is important: I considered using Google Fusion Tables for this as well, and it IS more powerful, but it is also less user-friendly for my volunteer section leaders. It does, however, give you the option of plotting addresses on a map so that you can get an instant overview of where your choir members live – useful for planning social gatherings or visits!

What fields did I include in our database?
Full name
Status (active, currently inactive, prospect, on leave, etc.)
Phone
Email
Address
Picture
Voice Section
Notes (general notes)
Communication history (when and how was someone last in touch? email, facebook, text, phone?)
All this is a work in progress.. and I would LOVE to know how others handle this! I want to be the most effective choir director possible – and that as always means so much more than teaching notes and rhythms. It is truly building relationships with others in the name of Jesus Christ.

Soli Deo gloria.

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