Another great aspect of the student leader retreat I was involved in last weekend involved student leaders making their work explicit. The college minister directed each team to share their purposes and plans with all the other teams. In fact, he had them write their goals and plans on wall-hanging Post-it sheets hung around the meeting room. Everyone was told to read those sheets during the course of the weekend, and time was also spent sharing plans out-loud.
Sometimes we forget how important it is to make our leadership roles and activities explicit for not only the other leaders, but for the entire college ministry. It’s easy for a campus ministry’s Leadership Team to run in the background, dutifully but quietly getting things done.
But there’s a lot of value in highlighting both student leaders’ work and the leaders themselves:
- Your college ministry will cultivate what it honors; as leaders are honored, more students will step up in the future.
- Your leaders could likely use some additional help from other student volunteers. As Teams and other opportunities are made known, it allows students to consider joining in the fun… and you’re likely to raise up quite a few future leaders through that process, too.
- Publicity can be a crucible. By highlighting what leaders are doing, it forces them to have their plans “public-ready.” There’s a sort of accountability here – not only to having a well-formed idea of their mission, but also to persisting in their commitment well as the year continues.
- Sharing what’s being done will give other students the chance to think about what’s not being done, too. A college ministry that appears to be running smoothly might lead many students to assume “everything’s being handled.” You and I know the truth. We need students to think about how they could help strengthen our movement!
So that’s this week’s Fridea: Make sure your leaders and leadership teams / positions are explicit for the entire college ministry. Highlight and “honor” them regularly.