The Monday Morning Debrief: Costly Delays

Late last week, RIM (maker of the Blackberry smartphones) announced that their new smartphones have been delayed until late 2012.  This is a big deal because Blackberry was THE smartphone to have years ago!  Everyone wanted one.  It was almost like a status symbol if you had a Blackberry you were “more important”.  You were esteemed over those who had just a simple old flip phone.

But times have changed and ever since 2007, when Apple introduced the iPhone, RIM has struggled to keep up with the growing smartphone business.  Their stock price went from as high as $144.56 in the week of June 16, 2003 to now $13.44 on Friday.  Meanwhile, Android and Apple based phones are now killing the market.  Everyone HAS to have an iPhone or Android based phone.  RIM, meanwhile, is struggling to keep pace with aging phones.

But RIM’s apparent demise is not the 1st time this has happened in the smartphone business.  Palm, creator of the 1st PDA (Palm Pilot) and smartphone (TREO) ended up having so many delays in new products and outdated software, that they were bought out and then blown up.  No one has a Palm smartphone anymore.

So why is this happening to RIM?  What is the reason why so few people want to buy a Blackberry anymore?  The reason is two-fold: outdated software that is not user-friendly and constant delays for new smartphones.  No one wants a clucky, keyboard-type, lousy internet browser based phone anymore. They want apps, music, movies on their phones.  They don’t want just email and text messaging anymore.  RIM knows this but they can’t get their new phones out in a timely matter.  So will RIM go the way of Palm?  Will they be bought out and blown up too?  Who knows, but one thing is for sure, these delays in getting new smartphones out is proving to be very costly!

So what’s the point here?  How does this possibly relate to ministry?

Simple – delays are very costly.  Just like in business, ministry delays can cost you a lot.  For instance, calendar and curriculum planning.  If planning is not done in sufficient time, then there will be a delay in getting the calendar of events and activities out to your parents and leaders.  If they don’t get the calendar in plenty of time, then they are going to plan other activities instead of coming to your event.  That is a costly delay that could have been avoided.

The same goes with curriculum.  If your teachers and speakers do not have plenty of notice of what you want them to speak on then they will not have plenty of time to properly prepare for their message.  Then they come to your gathering ill prepared and not as effective as they can be.  That is a costly delay that could have been avoided.

These are just two examples of costly delays.  Is there a delay that you are experiencing right now?  Are you having problems rolling out events or programs successfully?  The reality is, the longer you delay, the more costly it becomes – the more your ministry hurts because of it.  So right now, TAKE A MINUTE and think through what delays you might be experiencing and what you need to do right now to shorten those delays and roll out a better product for you students.

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Experiences?  Post a comment and let the discussion begin so that we can all benefit from it.

Tom Pounder

A father of 4, Tom is the Online Campus Pastor as well as Social Media Director at New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, VA. He blogs, vlogs, periscopes and podcasts regularly about student and online ministry stuff. Check out his work at and on iTunes (search YMSidekick).

One thought on “The Monday Morning Debrief: Costly Delays

  • December 19, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    Amen! I think at the root of our delay is fear. Acually, I prefer the word "cowardice". It's not our lack of opportunity, training, or even that we hate lost people. I think when we fail in sharing the Gospel, it's because we're just cowards. When I was training in suicide counseling, we were instructed not to try to talk them out of it. That's calling for a decision with only a 50-50 chance of being right. Instead, we advised them they could always do that later. Something to think about, huh?


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