Small Groups: Improving Your Structure

As we continue our series on small groups the week is all about improving your structure. Small groups don’t just happen. It takes a lot of intentionality and work to create a small group culture. The book creating a lead small culture has opened my eyes to this along with our process in creating a small group culture.


1. Recruit A Person To Oversee Small Groups In Your ministry

One of the first suggest from Creating a Lead Small Culture is have someone whose main job is to oversee small groups. The idea here is that when someone is overseeing the small group process amongst your ministry it will be stronger. That person is later focused on that element of the ministry.  Maybe your thinking “dude I am doing good just to find small group leaders.” That maybe the case and if it is you may want to back up and find that person who will come alongside of you to help you recruit and equip small group leaders. This way you are laying the foundation rather than trying to do it alone.




When you think about the programs in your ministry, here is a strategic question to ask: “Did the program help you move people in the direction you want them to go?”


2. Restructure Your Programs To Support Small Groups

If your goal is to create authentic relationships that create disciples then every program will support small groups.

Sometimes you have to stop doing something that works if you want something more important to work better.

Random programs tend to establish competing systems. Strategic programs establish complementary systems. Random programs function as activities. Strategic programs function as steps.

If your programs are not enhancing small groups and they are almost competing against them it may be time to think restructuring. For years I have done this and did not even realize it. In the past all my energy and focus would go into our midweek service. I would measure the success of our ministry based on the participation of the midweek service. Our midweek service was a large group time. I am thankful for the book Creating a Lead Small Culture for opening my eyes to the importance of small groups. Because when the music fades and the lights are turned off will that one night or event make them a disciple probably not it will give them experience. Small groups build community and relationships that are bigger than a one night event.

When you begin to see the potential of a high focused small group atmosphere in your ministry. You will also begin to see the benefits of small groups. When you see these benefits it will encourage you to measure everything you do according to small groups.


Do the summer camps you do support small groups? Do small group leaders go as chaperones?

We came up with ten characteristics that make a student camp small group friendly.

1.Small group leaders, not random adult chaperones, attend with students.

2.Main sessions are limited in production and time to complement group.

3.Resources are provided during camp to enhance the small group experience.

4.SGLs are valued and trained during the camp experience.

5.Each camp is built around age group focus for relevance.

6.Speakers are coached so messages set up small group time.

7.Activities or mission opportunities are organized around small groups.

8.Churches are provided with a follow-up curriculum for small groups after camp.

9.A targeted social media strategy is designed to engage parents with camp.

10.Logistics are organized so small group leaders can stay focused on relationships.

Joiner, Reggie; Ivy, Kristen; Campbell, Elle (2014-04-15). Creating a Lead Small Culture: Make Your Church a Place Where Kids Belong (Kindle Locations 1163-1169). Orange, a division of The reThink Group. Kindle Edition.

Do the crazy events you do encourage small groups?

Does your midweek service support small groups?

Originally posted 2015-02-18 12:42:16.