I think we've all experienced what happens when you're driving, maybe changing lanes, and suddenly a loud horn honking from a car you did not see breaks up what was a perfectly uneventful commute. At a minimum, it's embarrassing! And at its worst...well, it can end up costing you a lot of money.
When you buy a new car you learn where its blindspots are. And you take precautions. Hopefully.
When you repeatedly drive to the office or your children's school you learn where the blindspots are.
If you were at the Global Leadership Summit a few years ago you may have learned from Sheila Heen that our personal blindspots are tough to become self-aware of and require the courage to ask friends and co-workers to help us begin to see them. See also, Add Thanks for the Feedback to Your Must-Read List.
Blindspots can also limit the impact of small group ministries. In fact, I think there are a set of very common blindspots that may be limiting your small group ministry. See if you're aware of blindspot #1:
Blindspot #1: How you identify potential small group leaders
Question: How do you identify potential small group leaders?
If the primary way you identify potential small group leaders involves choosing from among current small group members, you most likely are unaware of blindspot #1.
If the primary way you identify potential small group leaders involves challenging your apprentice leaders to start new groups, you most likely are unaware of blindspot #1.
Take another look at the situation
Very Important: Here is the real situation. Pay careful attention to the next paragraph. What I am about to tell you may help you eliminate a blindspot.
Unless your percentage connected is very high, it is likely that many or most of the highest capacity potential leaders are not currently in a group. Can you see that? Also, once your attendance grows beyond a certain number it becomes more and more likely that your staff will not really know everyone who attends.
Can you see the blindspot?
If you read the previous paragraph carefully, you should now be aware of a potentially damaging blindspot.
Now, when you become aware of a blindspot in your car or a blindspot at a certain intersection, you adjust the way you drive. Right?
And if you've become aware of a blindspot in how you identify potential small group leaders, you need to adjust the way you choose new leaders. Right? At a minimum, you will be wise to figure out how to avoid injury!
Here's what I've found to be the solution
Identifying potential new leaders only from among the usual suspects is a terrible ministry decision at the very heart of many, many stuck small group ministries. The fact is, the best potential leaders in many churches are not yet in a group and are unknown by the staff and key leadership. The genius of both the small group connection strategy and the HOST strategy within a church-wide campaign is that these strategies help identify leaders from outside the usual suspects.
- Small Group Ministry Myth #4: High Leader Entry Requirements Ensure the Safety of the Flock
- Is an Artificial Barrier Limiting Growth in Your Small Group Ministry?
Image by Alan Hudson