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student ministry, youth ministry, church leadership

Silence Equals Negative Assumptions

By Doug Franklin October 8, 2013

How you communicate says a lot about your leadership. Let’s say a student gets hurt on a retreat. If you have an adult volunteer call the parents while you deal with the situation, that’s fine. If you don’t call those parents later and give them an update, they are going to assume you did something wrong. Communication is the key to success in youth ministry.

When parents and church leadership don’t see us going the extra mile to make sure everyone has the right information, they don’t think we are doing our jobs. If you get communication right and make other mistakes, you will have no problems; but if you don’t communicate and get everything else right, you will be fired.

Remember, most people are suspicious of the youth ministry and youth workers. They think we play with kids, go on vacations with students, are lazy, messy and over spend. You don’t want to add “doesn’t communicate” to that list.

The best way to shake off the stigma is to be a solid communicator. The key to communication is to over-communicate. Don’t just share the calendar, explain why we are having these events. Don’t just tell us what time to pick up our kids, tell us what to ask them about after an event. You know you have communicated well when people tell you, “I got it!”
Over-communicate and make parents and church leaders fans of the youth ministry.

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More