One of my goals when leading a team of volunteers is to work my way out of my job. I want to elevate my team so much, that everything I am responsible for can run with out without me. Often, when I bring this up, I hear a myriad of excuses as to why this makes no sense. Here are the top 4, and what I think about them.

But you don’t understand…

If I Work Myself Out of a Job, then I Won’t Have a Job.

You see, I feel like if I weren’t here every waking hour the church is open, our ministry would not run. It can’t run without me. I have to be there. I don’t trust the people that are on my team to do the things I know how to do to. And if I teach them, then I’ll be out of a job. I have a Ministry Degree and a Technical Degree, and it takes that to do my job. You need to understand that I’m important.

And I like to be needed.

I kinda like when people call me at all hours, it makes me feel needed. I could raise up leaders to lead areas of our ministry, but I’d still need to be here all the time. I like to complain about not having any free time for myself or my family, but I’m not willing to put in the time to train up leaders to take my place. Plus, my pastors will think I’m not valuable if I’m not doing all the work.

You don’t understand…

We don’t have the Money at Our Church that the Church Down the Road Does.

You don’t get it. I look at what Elevation and Hillsong and Newspring and Northpoint and Church on the Move is doing and we don’t have the money to do what they do. I choose to not really do anything with the resources I do have because there’s really no use. I mean, must be nice having an unlimited budget to buy whatever you need. I bet they don’t even have to turn in their receipts.

You really don’t get it…

We don’t have the Talent at our Church that another Church has either.

It looks like those other churches have such amazing talent. They barely even have to recruit. I bet they don’t even have to invite people to serve with them, looks like they have people lining up to serve. My church doesn’t really have a culture of volunteering. I mean, I’ve invited two people to serve with us in the last three months and they both said “No”! I even took a volunteer to lunch last year and they told me that they would rather serve in the nursery than on our team. I couldn’t believe it.

And another thing…

We don’t let Volunteers run some positions.

You don’t understand, the Audio Tech, the ProPresenter Operator, the Director, the Cameras, the Director, the Lighting Coordinator – these positions are only for ‘Pros’. A volunteer can’t understand the complexities of these positions. They don’t get it. That’s why we have the same team to serve every service, every Sunday. We don’t even have to do run-throughs, because these people know what they are doing. I don’t really need to send them emails, run-sheets or anything during the week – I mean, they’ve been doing it for years, they know what they are doing.

I wish you could understand that our church has some problems no other church has, but we’re excellent at what we do.

Lies. All lies.

To multiply your ministry and see extreme growth, you must raise up leaders.

You must create an environment where your team is thinking for themselves, where you are empowering them to make decisions, where you are delegating authority.

If you create an atmosphere where your team has ownership instead of always having to come to you for permission to do something, it will totally transform your team.

Here are 5 Practical ways you can give control and ownership to your team:

1. Form teams and designate Team Leaders. Allow yourself to pour into and develop those leaders technically and spiritually. More time with less people yields greater results.

2. Spend 50% of your work week creating opportunities, building structures and systems, creating pathways for your leaders to develop their teams. (You are the Coach, overseeing Team Captains who oversee the players. Write the playbook and let your leaders execute the plays. When you see success, start letting your leaders write some of the playbook.)

3. Empower leaders to host production training nights (plan some with you not there).

4. Empower your volunteers to prepare the ProPresenter computers and equipment during the week.

5. Leave the Control Room on Sundays! Let them feel the weight of solving problems.