It’s easy to overlook the human element within our teams in our relentless pursuit of excellence. Whether or not you’re a sports enthusiast, the concept of teamwork resonates with all of us. From greeter teams to worship teams, churches are filled with various groups working together towards a common goal. As someone who has overseen production staff and volunteers for years, I’ve come to realize the importance of leadership and fostering team excellence with a sense of belonging, care, and vulnerability within the team. Today, I want us to explore the value of building a culture of care and vulnerability … drawing inspiration from the way Jesus led His disciples, and how it can transform our church teams.
Leadership can take two distinct paths: dictatorial or team-oriented. While the former may get the job done, it often results in high turnover rates and low morale among team members. In contrast, leaders who choose to be part of the team – leading with humility and vulnerability – create an environment where their employees and volunteers are willing to go above and beyond. Jesus exemplified this style of leadership during His time with the disciples. He served them, relied on them, and established a deep sense of trust and loyalty among the group.
To truly care for our teams, we need to embrace vulnerability. As leaders, we must be willing to open up, be real, and share our own struggles and joys. This authenticity fosters trust and encourages team members to reciprocate. While we acknowledge the need for structure and effective management, it is crucial to remember the human element. Volunteers are not employees; they willingly give their time and resources to be part of the ministry at your church. By genuinely caring for our teams, we create an environment where excellence naturally follows.
Caring for our teams extends beyond weather updates and brief conversations. It involves actively praying for them, taking a genuine interest in their lives, and walking alongside them. As leaders, we have the opportunity to be more than just supervisors. By investing spiritually in our team members, we build deeper connections and cultivate a culture of reciprocal support. As I’ve experienced firsthand, pouring into my team spiritually has led to their increased willingness to support me, the vision of the ministry, and the church.
The authority by which the Christian leader leads is not power but love, not force but example, not coercion but reasoned persuasion. Leaders have power, but power is safe only in the hands of those who humble themselves to serve.
– John Stott
As church leaders, we are in the business of caring. It is through our genuine care for people that excellence flourishes. Fostering team excellence by building a culture of care and vulnerability within our teams is not a daunting task. It starts with being open and investing in the lives of those we lead. By following the example of Jesus and his approach to leadership, we can create teams that are committed, loyal, and united in purpose. Let us remember that at the core of our ministry is the human element, and when we prioritize the care of our teams, we unlock their full potential.
How do you foster a culture of care and excellence within your volunteer and staff family?
Have you ever been asked why you got into ministry? Whether you started as a volunteer or turned it into your full-time job, discovering and reigniting your passion for tech ministry is a vital aspect of your journey as a leader. Here are some tips for reclaiming the burning passion that once fueled the desire to serve.