Just recently, we had someone contact us about joining the worship team. When that happens, there is a good chance your prayers are being answered. We met, talked and are in the process of taking the next steps.
I have found inquiries about joining the team often come at the right times – just as someone transitions out, God will often send another person. We never want to take an inquiry to find out more about ministry lightly!
There are numerous ways to keep the pipeline open for encouraging potential candidates to serve. A few of those ways include student bands, well-documented and well-publicized steps explaining how to get involved, and personal invitations and conversations when there is a need.
Here are some thoughts about recruiting new team members into your ministry:
We don’t want more people just for the sake of numbers, we want to recruit for needed positions. It’s always good to have your current openings in mind. If you’re needing another drummer or a keyboard player, begin asking those in your team to be on the lookout. Pray for new people to emerge. Either way, be intentional about your recruitment – from beginning to end.
Be willing to train well. This foundation makes the long haul more of a possibility. Help equip people, bring them in slowly and show them all the basics – where and when you’ll meet, logins for music and rehearsal schedules, location of in ear monitor packs, iPads or lead sheets, and other basics. Build a solid foundation, answer questions, get their contact info and begin the process of staying in the loop together as you serve in ministry.
Direct Your Team
Set expectations early and often. Write out what you expect from team members. In our ministry, for the weekends the team is scheduled, it’s about a ten-hour commitment from practice at home, to a mid-week rehearsal to a five hour Sunday….it’s a sizable chunk of investment. Give them direction on dress code, punctuality, and general conduct. Also direct musically and spiritually. Lead the prayer times (or delegate others to lead the prayer times). Ask an instrumentalist or vocalist to listen to the track again and learn a specific part. Volunteers are motivated by community, success and passion for using their gifts. Taking direction well is mutually beneficial – for the team leader, the team, and the congregation.
Don’t be vague in your communication and details. Put all the information you can into your “ask” as you invite new people. Raise the standards for quality and skill as you grow in your ministry. As a leader, you live in the details so much and so long, it’s hard to think back to what a brand new person would need. There probably is a need to write out an onboard process for new people who join your ministry. It’s also much easier to place someone in the right spot from the beginning as opposed to telling them they may be in the wrong spot later.
Help Them Feel Valued
In a busy world, one of the best things you can do for your volunteer team is to make them feel like they are part of the team. Provide plenty of encouragement. Let them know how much they are appreciated and noticed. Provide everything you can so they can do their jobs well – the right songs and keys in a timely manner, the right equipment, the right times and details. A special thanks to boost them now and then can also make a difference. Also, help create times for connection and community outside of serving (or along with serving together).