Planning for Success in Student Ministry: The Stand-Up Meeting

Here’s my last post outlining a solid planning structure for your Student Ministry. Instituting all of these steps would seem to be time-consuming, but I’ve found that instead they become very effective time-management tools. Because most of the details for our Student Ministry plans are worked out long in advance, it allows me time to spend investing in our students in more personal settings. In previous posts, we discussed the first four phases: the 5-year plan, the 1-3 year plan, the annual planning session and the monthly calendar meeting. Here’s the last phase:

Phase 5: The Stand-Up Meeting

Wait a minute…another meeting? After we’ve talked about having a major meeting every year, and calendar meetings once a month, we need to meet again? Well…yes. Tell me if this has ever happened:

You have a monthly calendar meeting coming up. You’ve told your staff that if they run into any barriers, or if they need anything from you, go ahead and reach out to you. You don’t hear from anyone, so the calendar meeting rolls around with you expecting everything to be more or less on track. Then, all the sudden, you get blindsided with a number of missed assignments. Now you’re a month behind schedule, and a mild sense of panic is setting in.

Fire the Youth Staff! We need people that are dependable! Right? Wrong. Let’s not forget, your youth staff is full of people. I know this may surprise you, but…Student Ministry is not the only priority in your staff’s lives. Sometimes, in the middle of juggling kids, work, other church responsibilities, and sometimes even school (especially if you have students on your staff), things fall off of the radar. That’s why it’s a good idea to have  weekly stand-up meeting.

So what is a stand-up meeting? It’s just that – a meeting where everyone stands. Why standing? People don’t like to stand still for long periods of time. This makes the meeting go much faster than if everyone was to sit around a big table. Really, if your meeting runs longer than 5-10 minutes, you may be missing the point. The idea is simply to check in with everyone and make sure everything is moving along on track. It’s to make sure that, for that upcoming event, phone calls have been made, supplies have been purchased, equipment has been secured, etc. so that when the event gets closer, there are no surprises.

The quickest, easiest way to do this is to grab your staff immediately following a church service or Youth Service. WIth your team in a circle, run through everyone’s action items. If everyone’s on track, great! If someone isn’t, ask them to stay for a couple minutes after the meeting. Talk things out, and decide on some adjustments.

Really, this serves two purposes. The first thing it does is help you help your staff. The second thing it does is ensure you have people on your staff that are committed to your Student Ministry. You can only admit in front of your peers so many times that you aren’t keeping up with your assignments before you decide that maybe there’s a different ministry for you.

Summing it all up 

Student Ministry will always be taxing, and we’ll always have to deal with competing priorities. That’s true of any ministry, really. These planning phases may lighten the load some. I think you’ll discover that if you plan to succeed, instead of hoping you’ll succeed, more often than not it works out.

1 thought on “Planning for Success in Student Ministry: The Stand-Up Meeting

  1. Pingback: Cruel Intentions « FOCUSonSTUDENTS

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