Staff, deacons, department heads, volunteers and others.
Even in a small church, there are several types of leaders. And we need to have healthy, open communication with them.
Recently I was asked, “in a small church, how often should church leadership meetings be held?” Today’s post is an expansion on my answer to that question
The short (and hopefully not trite) answer is – church leadership meetings should happen as often as needed, but never more often than necessary.
The specifics of that will change depending on many factors, including church size, location, frequency of services and ministries, polity and more. But here’s how we work it out in our very active, suburban church of about 150 in typical Sunday attendance:
For the primary leaders of ministries that meet at least weekly (pastoral staff, worship team, youth leaders, and so on).
In our church, we’re able to meet with pastoral staff and weekly ministry leaders during normal business hours at the church building. But we’ve gone through seasons when we’ve had to meet off-site and off-hours to adapt to volunteers with limited schedules.
For many years, we met off-site during lunch because one or more of the volunteer staff had a punch-the-clock job several miles from the church, so the rest of us went where they were.
The general rule is, those with easier schedules adapt for those with harder ones.
For oversight committees (deacon boards, and the like).
This seldom happens 12 times a year, but it needs to be a minimum of 10 or 11 times a year if we want the oversight of finances and schedules to be up-to-date.
These meetings can take place at almost any time and place, depending on the schedules of the committee members. Currently, our preschool board meets at the church for lunch, while our church deacon board meets at a deacon’s house on a weekday evening.
The first thing we do after a change in leadership is to coordinate a regular time and place for meetings that works for everyone with the least amount of disruption possible.
If it’s too hard to meet, the meetings won’t happen.
For teams that plan annual or semi-annual events (like a Christmas pageant or food drive). Then monthly for the last quarter before the event happens, and weekly during the final month.
It’s tempting not to meet for six months or more for events that only happen annually. But if you do a post-event assessment, a half-year “start thinking about ideas” meeting, then a “let’s get this going” meeting at three to four months out, it ends up being quarterly.