This episode is part of our special webinar series on Using Your Platform For Good In Crisis.

Many Halftime Alumni are deeply invested in businesses, nonprofits, and ministries that are struggling today as a result of the current crisis. As social entrepreneurs, business owners, and board members, many are facing unexpected layoffs, forfeiting incomes, and other cost-cutting measures to survive and carry on with producing valuable (and in many cases faith-focused) work.

Do you find yourself facing these challenges or others like them? Are you asking how to best navigate so that you make it through to the other side even stronger?

Chris Crane, Edify Chairman/Co-Founder and Harvard MBA, recently joined Lloyd Reeb and Doug Piper to discuss creative ways you can advance your mission even in the midst of a crisis.

We hope this conversation will provide practical ideas on how to avoid despair and instead pursue productivity in this unique season.

What if, even in the midst of difficult circumstances, your next 10 years could be more impactful than all your previous years combined?

CLICK HERE to watch or listen to the recording of our conversation.

During our time together, Chris shared 5 ways to strategically position your ministry to flourish by…

1. Cutting expenses to survive.

Many of you have experience in this and have already applied for the new CARES Act that has a payment protection program. This is one option to gain runway that will allow you to avoid laying off valuable employees.

2. Innovating to serve clients during lockdown.

Encourage your employees to think of ways they can continue to serve clients. Don’t fall into the idea that because business can not be done as normal, it can not be done at all. Don’t just wait for this to pass. Instead, get creative. How can you serve clients? How can you make a difference? There are ways it can be done.

3. Forming a street-smart Advisory Team to get through the crisis.

Find leaders who have been through layoffs and other crises in their businesses to provide advice. Get 2-4 people with in-depth experience across various challenges. These are most likely people outside of your organization who can share their experience and act as a sounding board.

4. Using downtime to strengthen your foundation for the future.

If the current season is giving you more time on your hands, look for areas of governance that you haven’t had time to address. Start with issues that are important over the long-term. Look at your Board of Directors and plan for the future by using a board skill map to identify current strengths and gaps to fill. Take this time to focus on enterprise risk management by looking at your greatest risks, risks most likely to happen, and indicators to signify that it is time to adjust. Spend time developing relationships with executives or managers in your organization through unhurried and intentional conversation. Set up guard rails to make sure you and your team stay true to the organization’s mission. Use this time to invest in succession planning to ensure you have a list of qualified short and long term candidates, should something happen that would require a change in leadership. Finally, think about where you want to be in 10 years. What changes will it take to get there?

5. Seeking the Lord’s wisdom during the pandemic.

You will get advice from numerous people, often with conflicting feedback. Ultimately, the key is to take that advice to the Lord. Seek the Lord through prayer and fasting to get a sense of what the Lord is directing you to do during the very important decisions that will arise.

“The optimist speaks about concrete changes in the future. The person of hope lives in the moment with the knowledge and trust that all of life is in God’s good hands.” – Henri Nouwen

Moments of crisis have historically been a time where Christians can shine through compassion. It is the light of what God has done in our lives and the love that overflows from Him, to us, to others that shines bright in a dark back drop.

Not only do many Halftime Alumni have successful businesses, they are often in positions of leadership that give them a platform to go beyond bringing compassion, in order to provide a reason for the hope they have. Halftime Alumni are uniquely equipped to respond in times of crisis. One reason is that they have taken the time to get clear on their calling. There are so many needs in the world right now. When you don’t know your specific calling, it can be hard to see where to start.

If you have not identified your calling, let us help you discover it in order to get clear, get free, and get going. Learn how One on One Coaching with a Halftime CertifiedTM Coach can help equip you for impact.


Chris Crane is a successful entrepreneur who earned his MBA from Harvard and has led several organizations through times of crisis. From 1992-2000, Chris served as CEO of COMPS InfoSystems, an electronic database publisher with coverage of the nation’s 50 top commercial real estate markets. Under his leadership, COMPS raised four rounds of venture capital, acquired 13 companies and completed an IPO, before being sold in 2000. Today, he is living out his passion for serving the poor and educating children as Chairman and Co-Founder of Edify. He founded Edify in 2009 to make loans to Christian schools educating impoverished children in developing countries. From 2002-2009, he served as President & CEO of Opportunity International, the world’s largest Christian microfinance organization with 10,600 staff operating in 32 countries serving 1.5 million active clients. During Chris’ tenure, Opportunity’s revenues grew at a compounded annual rate of 30%. Chris connected with the Halftime Institute more than 15 years ago and has been involved ever since.

Rhonda Kehlbeck
Rhonda spent her first half in education; her own (a Bachelors and Masters from Baylor and a PhD from Fordham University) and helping others with theirs as speaker, lecturer, teacher, and Professor at Dallas Baptist University. She is also an author of a book for parents that encourages reading and writing with children.

The Pittsburg, Texas native met her husband at church where he drew her name from a pool of 500 women to become her secret Valentine. More than 2 decades later, she and Keith have two daughters who are currently attending Oklahoma University.

As our Vice President of Admissions, many find their Halftime journey begins by interacting with Rhonda. Her nurturing and caring spirit helps people get enrolled into the Halftime Institute.

She is a 2013 Halftime Institute alumna and considers Psalm 86:11 her favorite verse: “Lord, tell me where you want me to go and I will go there. With all my heart, I will praise you.”

"I first read Bob Buford's book several years ago, but my Halftime really began when my youngest left for college. I knew then I didn't just want another job, but wanted to give back to God by making a significant impact for His kingdom.”

Read Rhonda’s Biz Journals article co-written with Bob Buford