Successful church organization stems from a solid foundation. Training for church leaders is vital, to develop the skills and confidence required for pastors to serve as the sturdy base from which to build.
Church leader training should incorporate practical methods of team building that will boost staff morale, engagement, and team effectiveness. The roadmap to improving the teamwork of your church staff starts with assessing operations as they currently function. It transitions to goal setting, managing interpersonal relationships, and clarifying roles. Finally, developing and implementing innovative solutions to the problems unique to your organization will deliver you and your church staff to a network of solid trust and effective cooperation.
Assess Current Functioning
In order to improve any system, it’s important to establish a baseline. This is the springboard from which to jump to reach new heights. A wide range of assessments can be conducted to determine where to focus when developing future vision. Individual assessments are useful for getting a sense of staff members’ overall morale and to determine unique strengths and skills. Staffwide assessments can be used to gain insight into the way church staff currently functions as a whole. Taking the time to make these careful assessments will prove valuable and save time in the long run.
Set Concrete Goals
Goal setting at both the individual and the staff level is important in the team building context. Individual staff members each have their own reason for being part of the staff and vision for things they’d like to accomplish, so supporting them in concrete goal setting will ensure that they are fulfilled and contributing at the highest capacity. At the team level, it can be beneficial to set difficult but specific goals. This is a way to encourage staff to work together in new ways and accomplish things that didn’t seem possible. When a goal is specific it is more likely to be accomplished, even if it’s a challenge.
Manage Interpersonal Relationships
It’s important that staff trust one another and are supported in resolving conflict. As a pastor, Christian leadership training can help you develop the interpersonal skills needed to model teamwork for your staff. The ways that you manage your own relationships will be reflected in the way your staff functions as a team, so be sure to keep lines of communication open and establish a precedent for honest communication. When conflict does arise, avoid the urge to solve it all, and instead, empower the members of your staff to work it out. Helping to facilitate open conversations can go a long way in addressing issues as they arise, solving existing conflicts and building the trust that is essential to teamwork.
Sometimes roles within church staff are unclear, which can lead to confusion and conflict. Once strengths and goals have been assessed, it is possible to align each individual to the role and responsibilities that will be best suited to them. Make sure that each staff member knows their role and what is expected of them to fulfill it. A team with clearly established roles will function smoothly with limited misunderstandings.
Every team runs into challenges, and as a church staff it is important to develop a system to address these as they come up. As leader, your role may be to determine what that decision-making process looks like. How can you ensure that a successful system is in place for your staff to work together to solve issues and function cooperatively for the greatest impact. Build a solid structure for your staff in which there is a culture of trust, with well-defined roles, and a dynamic process for addressing problems as they arise.