Here are this week’s top deals, brought to you by Faithlife Ebooks. For more deals, visit our sale page or get our Free Book of the Month. Some of these deals are only good for a few days, so act fast to get these books at the sale price! (more…)
At Faithlife we use technology to equip the Church to grow in the light of the Bible. For more than 25 years that mission has guided everything we do. This year, to better equip the Church, we are focusing on several key areas:
- We are engaging users and helping them learn from each other in our product forums and Faithlife groups. Check out Faithlife.com to find a Faithlife group for each of our products, with active discussions from both our customers and the Faithlife team.
- We are improving integration across our products so you can spend less time doing “all the things” and more time on ministry. For example, you can now create a sermon and slides in Logos, present it with Proclaim, have the congregation follow it in real time through the Faithlife Study Bible, and publish it to the web at Faithlife TV and Faithlife Sermons.
- We are expanding our partnerships to increase the availability of content within our products to bring more value in the areas of Christian media, books, Bible study, and academia.
With this in mind, we’ll be sharing the progress that gets us excited around the office more frequently, with more intention, and with more opportunity for feedback.
Below you’ll find some highlights of how Faithlife is helping equip the Church. We are excited about partnering with you, and would love to hear how you are using our tools in your ministry—along with what we can do to better serve you.
Follow the group at Faithlife.com and share with us today.
– Bob Pritchett [Read more…]
It was 2 p.m. on a Friday, but the Faithlife offices were largely empty. Across the street, hundreds of Faithlife employees settled into the seats of a local theater. Caffeinated interns buzzed around them, putting the finishing touches on their presentations. In just minutes, the interns would ascend the stage one-by-one. There they would pitch a panel of executives and managers on projects they had conceived and developed with a team of Faithlife employees—all within the last 24 hours.
If your work place embraces holiday festivities, take a look at how we transformed the place we work every day into a fun holiday retreat. For the last couple of weeks, Faithlife’s offices have been full of subtle (and not so subtle reminders) of what’s just around the corner.
At the Faithlife office, December means Christmas decorating contests. This year, in addition to our usual inter-office decorating competition, employees teamed up to come up with the most creative gingerbread houses around. For those of you with annual decorating traditions of your own—take notes.
The prize? Two extra tickets for the raffle at Faithlife’s annual Christmas party.
Get a behind-the-scenes look at Faithlife on Monday, October 12th!
Monday, October 12th, 2015 | 12–7 pm
1313 Commercial St., Bellingham, WA 98225
Join us at Faithlife’s Bellingham, WA headquarters for a behind-the-scenes day of product showcases, tours, and Q & A. Meet the people who build your favorite Bible study tools, and learn about exciting new developments in the works.
You’ll hear directly from:
Bob Pritchett—Faithlife Future Plans
Chris duMond—The Brave New World of Logos Now
David Schwegler—Mobile Development
Dr. John Schwandt—Logos Mobile Education
Dr. Steve Runge—The Value of Greek and Hebrew, Even If You Never Took the Class
Dustin Masters—Faithlife Groups
Eli Evans—What We Make is Who We Are: Our Values in Software Design
John Barry—The Story Behind Publishing at Faithlife
Kamira Rea—The Logos Desktop Development Process
Karlene Swalley—Logos Cloud
Miles Custis—Creating Mobile Ed Courses
Nick Kelly—Video and Design
Scott Alexander and Kayla Philp—Proclaim
Sean Boisen—Beyond the Book: Datasets, Media, and New Kinds of Content
Todd Bishop—Learn Logos from the Pros
RSVP at our Customer Open House event page on Faithlife by Thursday, October 8th, 2015.
Once you RSVP, you’ll find a full schedule, parking information, and everything else you need to know.
You can email Breanna Cain (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions, or post a question in the Faithlife Event group.
I hope to see you on Monday, October 12th!
Thanks for your continued support,
Faithlife employees recently went through Dr. Darrell Bock’s Mobile Ed course, Learn to Study the Bible together. The study united employees from different departments to focus on reading and studying Scripture. To get a better sense of the experience, I sat down with Instructional Designer Jon Pierceson, SDA Product Manager Martin Weber, and Conference Marketing Team Lead Kelly McCoy and asked each of them about their experience with Dr. Bock’s course.
Why does Bible study matter?
Jon Pierceson: Christians study the Word of God because it’s just that—God’s word. It’s what he says. Christians want to know what God has to say because it impacts Christians’ lives and how we relate to one another. It impacts how we live and what we do. I use my personal Bible study time to prepare for preaching and leading my men’s small group.
Martin Weber: The Holy Spirit breathes life into the Word.
Kelly McCoy: Bible study is important for people who are searching for answers or clarity or understanding that they have a tool to help them find that.
Which Bible study tools do you use?
Martin Weber: I love that I can use the Topic Guide or Factbook in Logos Bible Software. Logos is with me no matter how deep or superficial I want to go into a particular topic. Logos is just like a good friend.
Jon Pierceson: I’m a firm believer in Mobile Ed. It’s what the church needs—theological education. Mobile Ed delivers an easy and accessible way for leaders to obtain theological education. Every Christian in a leadership role should have a copy of Logos. I think Logos Bible Software and Mobile Ed bridge the gap of theological and biblical study to help Christian leaders further develop in their faith.
Who are Mobile Ed courses for?
Martin Weber: I think a lot of people who never had chance to go to seminary and are expected to present the Word of God. Mobile Ed replicates the very best aspects of the seminary experience.
What are your favorite Mobile Ed courses?
Jon Pierceson: Bryan Chapell’s Preaching Bundle (CM151 and CM152)
Ben Witherington’s The Wisdom of John: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on Johannine Literature (NT221)
Doug Moo’s New Testament Theology (NT305)
Martin Weber: Morris Proctor’s Logos Academic Training (LT161)
Jon Paulien’s Biblical Eschatology Bundle (NT386 and BI290)
Find your own favorite! Browse all Mobile Ed courses by name or professor.
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Have you taken a Mobile Ed course? Tell us about it in the comments!
Part of Brittany Hackett’s role as executive assistant at Faithlife involves “periodically scheduling fun stuff.” That’s why earlier this month, employees were greeted at work by a dozen kittens. A small presentation room was dedicated to the playful visitors, and people could come play with the kittens throughout the day. It’s part of what we like to call “awesomeness”—one of Faithlife’s company values.
Brittany coordinated with the Whatcom Humane Society to bring in kittens that were up for adoption, and when it was all said and done, two of them had new homes.
For Brittany, “fun stuff” encompasses far more than transforming presentation rooms into kitten play houses. While dietary restrictions make it tricky to plan events that everyone can enjoy, Brittany experiments with non-food-related fun, like roaming Lego stations that move around campus, campus-wide Easter egg hunts, or giving out tickets to the fair and other local events. This summer, employees also attended a local minor league baseball game. We’ve certainly taken the time to enjoy food together as well, celebrating National Doughnut Day, and setting up drop-in snack stations for coworkers to mingle.
These occasional expressions of “awesomeness” are one way employees experience the company values we try to exude to our customers. Awesomeness is what inspires us to spontaneously offer customers free gifts and it determines how we handle situations like the famous $40,000 mistake. It’s why we give away free books every month, and why we started producing a daily Christian TV show.
Want to join the fun? Head to JoinTheAwesome.com to see our available careers!
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Check out some of the other awesome things going on at Faithlife! Learn more about spikeball, team trips, business seminars, decorating contests, or our biking community. You can also see the rest of our kitten pictures on our Facebook page!
Glassdoor, the leading jobs and careers marketplace, has recognized Faithlife’s Bob Pritchett on the 2015 Glassdoor Highest Rated CEO list for small and mid-sized companies (companies with fewer than 1,000 employees). This annual report, which highlights the top leaders in countries throughout North America and parts of Europe, is based on employee feedback from February 1, 2014 through January 31, 2015.
“It is an honor to be recognized on Glassdoor’s list, and it reflects how our employees value working at Faithlife,” said Pritchett. “We have assembled an incredible team and built an organization that stays out of their way, so together we can deliver a great experience for our customers.”
Pritchett received an 89 percent approval rating based on the anonymous and voluntary reviews Faithlife employees shared on Glassdoor throughout the past year. This placed him at No. 22 in the rankings for small to medium-sized business CEOs.
“Gaining the trust and approval of an entire workforce is one of the most difficult tasks for a CEO to undertake,” said Glassdoor CEO and Cofounder Robert Hohman. “I celebrate the leaders appearing on this list because they’ve managed to inspire and engage their employees, as proven by the feedback shared on Glassdoor around the clock and around the world.”
CEO approval ratings are gathered through Glassdoor’s online company review survey, which seeks to gain current and former employee sentiment about job and company satisfaction, the work environment and the culture. Employees are asked to rate a number of workplace factors like compensation and benefits as well as work-life balance, and asked whether they approve or disapprove of the way their CEO is leading the company. In addition, employees are asked to describe some of the upsides and downsides of working for the company and provide any advice for senior management.
With proven ability to lead, Bob speaks regularly at industry conferences and to academic groups on entrepreneurship, electronic publishing and digital libraries. He is a 2005 winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award, and was included in the Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40 Under 40. Bob’s first book, Fire Someone Today: And Other Surprising Tactics for Making Your Business a Success, was released in April, 2006, and has been translated into Russian and Korean. He is releasing Start Next Now: An Action Plan for Getting Ahead, which is his guide for young people heading into the workforce.
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Did you know Faithlife was also ranked among the top 10 small to medium-sized businesses to work for in 2015?
For some, not knowing the people in their church can be a significant barrier to church involvement. When it’s hard to find a familiar face in your church, it’s tough to see that Christian community as family. Unfortunately, this can become a self-perpetuating cycle—you don’t know people, so you don’t get involved, so you don’t meet people.
That may or may not be true for you, but I think we can all agree on this:
Weekly handshakes and hellos are not enough to get to know your church.
If your church desires to be a community that feels like family, your congregation needs opportunities to build relationships.
Create opportunities for community
Recently, Faithlife found itself experiencing a similar situation. With over 420 employees, Faithlife is larger than the average church (though certainly smaller than many churches). We’re big enough to know that people who have worked here for years still haven’t had a chance to meet everyone.
Eric Olson has been with Faithlife for over 10 years, and he says, “Many years ago I knew all 60 people in the company, but now that there are over 400 of us, there are many people I’ve never met.”
We have numerous departments and teams within those departments which build close friendships through daily interactions. But beyond that, how do you get to know all those people you have so much in common with, yet never see?
To solve this problem, Auresa Nyctea, a developer, created a special Faithlife Group open to all Faithlife employees. Its purpose? Facilitate opportunities for employees to meet people they’ve never met or worked with. Each week, employees who have joined the group are put into a group of four people from other departments. From there, it’s up to the individuals in the group to coordinate their schedules and settle on a time and place to meet and chat.
“I don’t get to interact with very many people outside of my department on a regular basis,” says Lynnea Fraser, an editor from the publications department. “I’ve been at Faithlife just over two years now, and I still don’t know a lot of my coworkers throughout the company.”
Lynnea was among the nearly 50 employees who were eager to meet new faces. Lynnea says, “I haven’t spent additional time with anyone I’ve met yet. But I do say ‘hi’ if I see them around campus now. And I actually know their names, which makes it less awkward.”
Having some context for meeting new people makes it easier to connect and share. “During the first meet up, we took turns giving a three-minute summary of our personal history—where we grew up, where we went to school, our families, and how we came to work at Faithlife. We took turns talking about our role at Faithlife—what projects we work on, what our typical day looks like, etc.”
These meetings have no structure. There is no curriculum. Just people. Every meeting looks a little different because they happen organically.
“Gathering together around food or coffee is my ideal way to get to know people better,” says Michael Schoonmaker, a developer at Faithlife. “That kind of fellowship runs deep in my family, my faith, and among my friends.”
Now imagine what this could look like for your church.
Start your church group now
Groups like this take little upkeep—people join because they want to get to know each other. By creating the group and pointing people to it as a church, you get to be the catalyst that helps people build community. If you’re staff is already stretched too thin, delegate the group to a member of your congregation—just don’t delegate the responsibility to tell people about your group.
If you want people to join your group, make it clear that the church is recommending it. Slip it into your announcements. Include it in your contact information. Send an invite in your newsletter, or share the link on social media. Show people that the Faithlife Group is a place the church suggests you go if you would like to get to know other members in another setting.
You’ll also want to adjust your group’s privacy settings so that anyone from your church can find the group and join.
Take your congregation further
If you or someone at your church has time to invest in the group, it’s easy to add curriculum, share church documents, or encourage further learning or serving opportunities. You can add official documents right to the group to keep all of your crucial information in one place.
If you want these group meetings to have more structure, create some sample questions designed to spark meaningful conversations and help people get to know one another.
Your Faithlife account is free.
All Faithlife Group features are free.
Join Faithlife Groups today, and get started with your church.