Worship Leaders: 8 Keys to Gaining Your Team’s Respect
by Emily Rothschild
Unity. We all want it. But especially when you’re the leader; and in this case—a Worship Leader. Teams who don’t respect their Worship Leader show it. They don’t practice on their own. They don’t show up on time, and they all seem to be doing their own thing. But it doesn’t have to be like that.
So here are 8 Keys for A Worship Leader To Gain Your Team’s Respect:
1. Be Prepared for Rehearsal. Whether it’s a mid-week rehearsal or your pre-service rehearsal, know what you’re going to do. Plan. Have an agenda. As a worship team member, there’s nothing worse than taking time out of your schedule to go to a rehearsal that’s full of chaos and disorder. If you want your team to lose respect for you, the best way to do it is to not value their time.
2. Know the Songs. This may sound intuitive, but you might be surprised how many Worship Leaders come to rehearsals “kinda” knowing the songs. If your job was that of a marketing strategist and were scheduled to give a presentation to a potential new client, would you “kinda” know what you were going to present? Listening to a new song a minimum of 25 times before attempting to sing it—even if it’s only to the worship team—should be a must for any Worship Leader.
3. Don’t Just Be on Time—Be Early. When the Worship Leader/Pastor has a reputation for running late, it becomes a breeding ground for contempt and division. In past worship teams I’ve been on, when the Worship Leader is set up and ready to rehearse by the designated starting time, it sets a tone of order and organization for the entire rehearsal and service.
4. Be Led by the Spirit. When a Worship Leader is doing everything in his/her own power (and for their own glory), it’s evident to all: musicians, vocalists, sound engineer, congregation, Pastor, and to God. From the songs you choose, to the team prayer, in everything you do—and I mean everything—be led by the Holy Spirit.
5. Exemplify Excellence. Excellence means faithfulness. If God has trusted you with being in charge of a worship team, be faithful (excellent) with it. Jesus’ Parable of the Talents shows us what happens when we are—and aren’t—faithful (excellent) with what we are to steward. And don’t confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence means to do your best with what God has trusted you with for His glory. Perfection means to do your best, with no acknowledgment of God, for your own glory.
6. Be A Student. I’ve seen many Worship Leaders/Pastors who, once they receive their title, they think they’ve “arrived.” Don’t let this happen to you. As Christians, we should always be learning; always be correctable and teachable. Learn your scales. Learn more chords. Take vocal lessons. Acknowledging that you don’t know everything shows humility…a trait that even Jesus Himself personified.
7. Show Support for Your Pastor. Want support and respect from your team? Show support and respect to your leader. It’s biblical: …Whatsoever a man sows, that will he also reap. —Galatians 6:7. Boom!
8. Pray for Each Team Member by Name—Daily. It’s no secret that when you pray regularly for someone, you develop an empathy toward them. And when we have empathy toward others, the Holy Spirit begins to form a bond, which eventually leads to love. If you love your team, they will know it, and they will, in turn, love (and respect) you.
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