You’ve been thinking about starting a new small group. Whether you’re a veteran small group leader or this is your very first group, there are a few things to keep in mind. What you do first determines so much about how things end up.
Want to get your new group off to a great start?
Here are 5 simple steps to starting a new group:
- Recruit a co-leader (who is not your spouse). This is very important! Don’t try to do this on your own. Think about who you’d most like to share this experience with…and invite them to help. Don’t compromise. The right person is not an in name only kind of co-leader. They’ll really be in it with you. You need someone who is both enjoyable and can help share the load.
- Choose a day and time that really works for both you and your co-leader. You will be tempted to begin inviting right away and then figure out the best time for everyone. Do not do that! The easiest thing to do is compromise and agree to meet when it’s not the best time for you. If the day and time don’t work for you, it will be very difficult to stay with it. Far better to pick the best time for you and your co-leader.
- Choose a small group study that meets the needs and peaks the interests of the people you hope to connect. The study you choose will play a big role in who will say “yes” to joining your new group. Be sure you’re paying attention to the real needs and actual interests of your potential members. See also, Does Your Topic Connect with Your True Customer?
- Make a list of friends, neighbors, co-workers and family members you would like to invite. Sometimes it helps to think about groups of people that you already hang out with (i.e., the softball team, the bunco group, the other parents on the T-Ball team, etc.).
- Host a casual get-together as your first gathering. Nothing lowers defenses like a casual get-together. Whether you fire up the grill, order pizza from a great pizza joint or invite everyone to bring their favorite dessert, it’s just easier to meet a few new friends while you’re holding a fork or a spoon. See also, Skill Training: 10 Keys to a Great 1st Meeting and The ABCs of a Great Start.
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