A healthy, mature, and growing in number group of emerging leaders is a strong indicator of a ministry’s health.
But besides challenging new students to leadership positions how do you get there?
From 30,000 feet this is the best way to develop a college ministry leadership team:
- Test them in the Fall
- Align them in the Winter
- Select them in the Spring
Test in the Fall
If you have waited until the winter or spring to talk about potential leaders then you have waited too long. Have a conversation about potential leaders at the end of the second week of school. Ask your staff to project who they think will be a leader by the end of the year. This exercise is great for getting staff to think about the future, and to get out of the paradigm of managing the present and onto the most important task of expanding in light of the future.
Align in the Winter
There’s always less going on in the winter months–less people coming, less motivation from your team, less hours of sunlight in the day. This is an opportunity to give potential leaders something meaningful to plan, run, or lead. Then after they have done something sit down with them and align them to how that role or responsibility fits in with the mission, vision, and values of your ministry. Leadership selection does not have to be educated guesses or popularity contests. If you test and align, then it’s often an encouraging, data-driven, but faith filled discussion.
Select in the Spring
Leaders emerge, or rather they stick out. By the Spring they will know (mostly intuitively) that they are different than most of the other students. Selecting them early in the spring acknowledges this reality and plants confidence in them. Make sure when you select them that you tell them WHY you are selecting them. Again most college students don’t know themselves very well. The why’s are critical.