Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Need for Reassignments and Cross Training at PCC

One of the best ways for ministry workers and church staff to experience greater fulfillment is to give them new roles. We should never be afraid of reassigning people or of being reassigned ourselves. New roles offer new challenges, which are opportunities for personal growth.

Another advantage of moving staff and team members around periodically is that it stimulates growth by keeping things dynamic. Change produces tension and tension produces growth. If the same people are filling the same roles year after year it can result in stagnation; people have a tendency to become entrenched and put themselves on “cruise control” just maintaining the status quo.

It should be apparent that some changes are taking place at PCC. This is beginning at the top and is working its way throughout the church. For instance, a visible change in my role is occurring on Sunday mornings – I am not playing in the band every week, another musician is filling my role there. I am now playing one half the time that I used to play. Eventually, I will develop a teaching team to assist me with teaching on Sunday mornings on a consistent basis.

In addition, three worship teams have been formed, with each team serving one month each. This process has involved enlisting new musicians and new singers. Many of these positions are also cross-trained. The end result of these changes is that Pace Community Church will eventually have three highly capable worship teams of singers and cross-trained musicians all of whom can fill one another’s shoes and lead this church in the absence of anyone else. This is a good thing because it makes our church stronger and not dependent upon any single personality.

Even as recently as one month ago there was a leadership change in the teen ministry. The baton has been passed from Renae to Denise Y., who is now doing an exceptional job in this area.

More changes will be occurring in other areas too: reassignments of personnel, restructuring our ministries, room reassignments, and more teenagers being deployed to serve in the ushers department, as greeters, as teachers in our children’s ministry areas, and even to help with security.

Why do this?

Why do we do this? Why not leave things alone? Here's why: (1) Some areas simply need to be fixed or improved. (2) It creates new opportunities for new people.... you know, God's own people whom He has given gifts to. (3) It strengthens the church by having a larger cadre of trained minsitry workers to rely upon, which means PCC is not dependent upon (or held hostage by) any single personality. (4) It keeps things dynamic. Fresh eyes add new perspectives and insights. (5) It's a God-thing.

Push back….

Change always creates push back. People don’t like change. But as a leader, my choice is clear. Either I can slowly kill off the future of our church by allowing the status quo to remain on cruise control, or I can bite the bullet and start moving people around. There is no easy way to do this. Asking someone move to another seat on the bus almost always leads to hurt feelings or even conflict. But there is no other way to make room for other talent. No one ever decides to change roles on their own.

Over the course of 2010 we have been making changes, improving systems, training and delpoying new people, and starting new ministry teams. Some of these changes have been visible, others behind the scenes. Even though some of the transistions have not been easy, they have been well worth the effort. It has resulted in a fresh wind of insight, enthusiam, and new ideas - none of which would have been heard or heeded if these new people were made to sit on the sidelines.

That’s what happens when you make room for others. Although it is never easy, it seems like every time I’ve asked someone to move over to squeeze someone new in, the pain and the push back on the front end has been well worth the rewards on the back end.

While much has been done, there is still more to do. I am confident that 2011 is going to be our best year ever!

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