4 Keys to Applicable Leadership Development

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Leaders are people who develop leaders. Its amazing how, as time has progressed and technology has improved, leadership development has evolved. Even moving forward the next few months, my team and I are making some tweaks to how we develop leaders.


So, what are some keys to you taking the leaders in your church to the next level?


  1. Keep an updated volunteer list with thorough details.


List every ministry service opportunity, contact the leaders of each ministry, and ask them to send you a list of all of the people who serve in their area. Here are a few stats you’ll want to note with your volunteers:


  • How many individual people in the church are serving? How many individual people are members of the church?
  • How many family units are serving in the church? How many family units are in the church?
  • Note an exact percentage of who is serving and who is merely sitting. The rule of thumb is that 80% of the work at the church is done by 20% of the people. It’s the 80/20 principle.
  • Also, note the same percentage mentioned above, but in relation to family units instead of individuals.
  • Note how many people are serving in numerous ministry areas.


  1. Make leadership development videos.


A really cool website that my team and I are planning on using to host our leadership development videos is teachable.com. I used this website for the two online courses I’ve developed about how to turn your sermon series into books (click here and here).


In these videos, explain some specific items your leaders need to learn. Explain policies, protocols, processes, etc.


Furthermore, you can use a website like MinistryGrid.com to provide more leadership development videos for your team.


  1. Host one or two leadership summits every year.


A leadership summit is when you gather all of your leaders together to pump them up, cast vision, and talk about the importance of serving. This is a key time to trickle vision into the hearts of your key people. This is a good time to have a guest speaker come in and develop them.


Then, do breakout sessions for each ministry and do individual leadership development time.


The timing of these summits is key. I plan on doing two in the upcoming year: One right when school starts back in January and one when school starts back in August.


  1. Honor your leaders.


This coming year, we’re becoming much more intentional about this. We’re doing three key things:




My assistant and I are making a schedule to write handwritten notes to volunteers every week in the coming year. This is a good way to honor people, and they feel special by getting a handwritten note (more on that here).


If you see someone who is doing an especially terrific job, go out of your way to bless them by giving them a gift card to give some extra oomph behind your “thank you.” This generosity become part of the DNA of your church if you exhibit it with your leaders. Even $5 to Starbucks means a lot to people.




I’ve done this before and am about to start doing it again. On social media and in the bulletin, on a weekly basis, thank a volunteer and include their picture as your key volunteer of the week.




I’ve seen several churches do this, and have never tried it before, but have it on the calendar for next year. This is a time to have people dress up, roll out the red carpet (literally), and cater in a big “thank you” meal for your leaders. Give out awards for the night and just make it fun.


I hope these tips help you to develop more and better leaders. Have any additional thoughts on this? Let me know in the comment section below.

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