Church Baners

New-Team-MemberIt’s exciting and also can be daunting when a new member joins your team. It’s sometimes difficult to wrap your mind around where to start when there’s so much going on!

Here’s how you unlock the doors, and don’t forget to put out the feather flags, and we’ve got coffee over here for guests, and be here at 8:30 and don’t forget to smile!

Unfortunately, we’re often so busy “doing” the work and wishing that we had more help that when someone shows up to help, we turn into deer in headlights.

Here are 3 steps to have in place in order to make the most of a new team member joining your team. It will only take a few minutes to get this in order, but the benefits over time of a growing team far surpass the effort required.

(side note; These 3 steps don’t just apply to Guest Services, so pass them on to other growing teams at your church, or review at your next staff meeting!)

Have a training checklist

checkWhat time does a team member need to arrive? How late are they expected to stay? What are the responsibilities of that team position? What is the “why” behind their position? Where are supplies kept? Who do they report to? How is scheduling done? How do they turn on a piece of equipment or shut it off properly?

All of these questions are going to come up at some point, and it’s best to have them available during the training process before the team member has started than to find out 3 months into serving that they’re actually supposed to be showing up 10 minutes earlier than they have been.

This checklist needs to happen outside of their first time serving. It could be a video you send them the week before they start serving, or have them arrive 10 minutes early on their first Sunday.

Setting the expectations with a clear checklist gives you the opportunity to know that your bases have been covered, and gives them a clear understanding of how to accomplish their assignment.


Shadow a team member (not you)

Hdollyave another team member do the training. They can walk through their training checklist, and then show the new team member the specifics about their position. This trains your team members to do the training, so they start to see that they can invite new members and to train into the team.

Teach your team this strategy:

4 steps for having a shadow:

  • I do, you watch
  • I do, you help
  • You do, I help
  • You do, I watch

This simple process moves a new team member into successfully completing their training, and slowly moves the trainer out of having to be hands on. Most of us have been in a new job, or volunteer position at church and been given no instruction or never-ending instruction. These 4 steps clearly let us build out someone’s responsibility.

It could look like this on a single day:

  • I show you how to unlock and prop open the first door
  • I show you again how to unlock the next door, then you prop it open
  • I give you the key to unlock the 3rd door, then I’ll prop it open
  • While I prop open the 3rd door, go ahead and move onto the 4th door


This may happen over a series of weeks:

  • I show you where to get our signage and you where to set it outside.
  • Let’s get the signage together this week, here’s the key, and we’ll take it outside
  • Here’s the key to the signage room, I’ll be there in a minute to help carry the signs out
  • Let me pull out my recliner while you get the signs in the front parking lot (just kidding)



Review the first day with a new team member

chatDepending on the team member’s personality and schedule, this could look a few different ways, but send a text, an email, phone call or invite a team member for coffee to talk about their first time serving.

While you’re in the thick of serving on the team, a new team member brings a fresh set of eyes to what’s going on. If they’re willing to ask “why?” as in “why do we do it that way?” then listen carefully and ask questions, there may be gold in what they’re asking that could help your team develop and grow.

As if there was anything not covered in training that they’re still not sure about, and answer any questions about their involvement with the team. If you can, take a picture of them serving on their first day and send out an email to the team or post in your team’s facebook group about how excited you are to have that person joining the team.

Use this as an opportunity to set the stage for how much joy there is in serving on and with your team.

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