Marginal Cost

The challenge all causes have is making the organizational cost of going from 1 to 2 as low as possible.

A couple of summers ago I was away on a four-week assignment in the US. When Sunday rolled around I began googling for a local church to worship at with my wife.

However, a colleague, also on the assignment, had a different idea. We could download the vodcast and sermon notes from his church back in Canada and have a discussion together. He send out word to those on the assignment and a dozen or so joined the group in the common area of our accommodation. We enjoyed great teaching and discussion together.

My colleague’s church had cracked the marginal cost issue. It cost his church practically nothing to resource a small group of a dozen people gathering together at our satellite location, 1000s of kilometers from the church’s base. Hundreds of other ad-hoc groups could theoretically do the same and it would cost the church pennies.

Collecting donations, recruiting volunteers, training leaders, spreading ideas. The challenge is the same. As you grow, can you drive the marginal cost of adding more participants to zero? When you can confidently say yes to this, I think you’re onto something big!


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