ONE BIG MISTAKE Church Plants and New Ministries Make in Year 1

Church Plants and new ministries are presented with unique temptations. One of those unspoken temptations is the temptation to create ministry constructs that are modeled too closely after the larger churches that gave birth to them.

For example…

Mother-Church has a full-time Media Team Lead on staff…

Church-plant from Mother-Church feels need to have, at the very least, a lay “Media Team” Leader.

The mistake? Over-Specialization 

Don’t get me wrong, a structure  in the life of church plant or new ministry is crucial from the earliest days of its existence. Organizational traction is next to impossible without clear leadership structures in place and clear roles defined for all leaders. While it is imperative that clear roles are established, those roles should not be narrow in their scope of responsibility and oversight, particularly in the first year or two of a church plant or new ministry.

Nothing slows a team down like the statement: “That’s not my department“.

The Alternative to Over-Specialization? Cross-training 

More than likely the Lead Planting Pastor will wear numerous hats in the early days of the church plant. (Preaching/Pastoral Counseling/Janitorial Staff/Drummer/Fundraiser) This is normal. Unfortunately many Lead Planting Pastor’s wear ten hats while creating leadership roles that are designed to only wear one. This is completely unsustainable. Cross-training leaders is a must. How is this done?

Cast a clear vision, establish clear structure and promote collaboration among the leaders on your core team.

Pair up leaders to work together on certain ministry projects. (Ex: Community Group Lead and Hospitality) Have leaders serve on various ministry teams where they are not leading. This helps cultivate a leadership culture of collaboration and mutual submission. Cross-training also helps develop more well-rounded leaders who are aware of the other ministries of the church and the challenges those ministries face. Over time, cross-training develops mature leaders who have a working knowledge of the “whole” and have bought into the vision of laboring together with fellow leaders to fulfill the strategic vision and mission.

Chad Williams

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s