Great systems are portable. They don’t just work in one context or environment. A system that is portable can be used in different contexts or environments – such as different locations, buildings, regions, economies, cultures, etc. A great system doesn’t have to work in every context, but it should be portable enough to work in many.
Take fast food chains, or any other franchise for instance. They’re basically a system that has been nearly perfected, and then ported to places all around the country and even the world. They might have different prices, people, settings, sizes, customers, etc. but it’s all still the same system. There are probably tweaks here and there, but the base system is the same and it works because it’s portable.
At CCC we’re going multisite. What that means is that most of our systems need to become portable. In multisite terms that’s usually called reproducible. We need to be able to reproduce our systems across any number of campuses in order to achieve the goal of becoming one church in many locations.
So, those are my thoughts (probably not even worth $.02) about what 4 qualities make up a great system. They’re effective, efficient, flexible and portable. I’m sure that’s not it, so what do you think?