I have heard people placed in various ministry positions complain about having to go to training. Most of them expressed one of two reasons that they rarely attended. Either they were experienced and didn’t need to be trained, or the training they had attended previously was not well done.
Answering the first excuse, I have never seen a leader in action who could not improve, including myself. Being trained by numerous people in various areas opens our eyes to how to get better.
Leaders learn to be leaders from somewhere. Without guidance, we usually do it the way we have seen it done—and that is not always a good thing! Unless someone equips us with a vision of what our leadership could be and shows us how to achieve it practically, we will stumble.
When I trained small group leaders, I gave them many useful hints, often suggestions that I wish someone had shared with me before I started leading. I had no one to train me, and so I remember my early attempts at leading a group in horror. All the good intentions and efforts in the world do not make a good leader. There are skills to master, and I can speak from experience that training is a far better way to learn them than trial and error. Having experience does not necessarily make a good leader.
As to the second excuse, I have used it myself when I believed it to be true. So let me speak now to you who design training so that you make it relevant, interesting, and helpful.
Training should always emphasize the ministry vision. “Vision leaks,” Bill Hybels says. Training reinforces what you are trying to accomplish as leaders. Without that constant reminder, we all grow weary and/or complacent. Training is an opportunity to reenergize as a group and remember why we are there putting forth so much effort.
In addition, making your training relevant to the specific trainees creates better leaders. Keep your group cohesive enough that they receive practical help for their specific leadership area. Training cannot be a one-size-fits-all event.
Training also helps build your team by bringing them together, allowing them to network and fellowship with those in similar roles. The time should include interaction and connection, not just information.
I love being a leader, but I am so thankful for all the beneficial training I have had. You could likely call me a training junkie because I go even if I think I have heard it all before.
How can BOW help you design training for your team?