Have you ever talked to your team about a concept until you were blue in the face and still got the feeling they were miles away? I have, and I have not always been able to get their attention focused where it should be.
Today, however, I want to share an example of something that did work.
Last year I was working with my music team at a Saturday gathering specifically focused on connecting more deeply on a personal level with each other, and on digging into the preparation aspect of being part of the music team. In the past month I have been posting excerpts from this time. This past Monday I posted 5 Steps to Improve Your Preparation. Wednesday we toyed with the question, What Are Your Goals?
Today I want to give you the illustration that helped the team to get involved in the discussion.
After discussing what our goals in practical preparation should and should not be, I introduced the 5 Steps. If you remember, the 5 Steps were
- Listen – spend time with the example recording
- Read – spend time reading the music while listening to the recording to make certain you fully understand the piece
- Feel – listen through the set of songs without distraction and get a sense of where the songs want to go and how they want to flow together
- Worship – get beyond the notes and rhythms and be able to worship individually to the music you will be leading
- Lead – be past the rudiments of the music so that you can focus on God and the congregation while you lead.
In order to illustrate the steps and where we were or were not adhering to it, I drew a timeline representing the week a team member would be volunteering to lead worship. On the right was the Sunday for which they were volunteering, and on the left was the Sunday prior. In the middle I made a mark to represent the mid-week rehearsal.
Then I asked the team to help me note on the timeline where they thought we presently accomplished the 5 steps. As expected, steps 1 and 2 were clustered right around the mid-week rehearsal, and 3, 4 and 5 were right on or close to Sunday. In fact, some of 1 and 2 were also happening Sunday morning, where we were supposed to be simply running through music rather than rehearsing.
Next I graphed out where I felt we should be accomplishing the 5 steps. We should be completely through the listening and reading stages early in the week. We should be working through feel and worshipping at the rehearsal. Finally, we should be completely ready to lead on Sunday at the first service, not the last one. The Sunday morning run-through will naturally including more time of getting our feel together and preparing our hearts well for worship, but it should not be a rehearsal.
What followed was a lot of meaningful conversation about schedules, what I needed to provide for them so that they could improve their preparation, and many other things.
What successful methods have you used to get your team’s attention in regards to preparation?