When you have more leaders, you can have more groups, and more opportunities for
people to get connected in groups and grow. After exhausting the list of usual prospects –
current and former people in the ministry, elders, existing group leaders, etc. – it can be
difficult to find additional leaders. Some options include:

  • Inviting people known to you and others who are ready or who might be interested in
    leading a group
  • Asking for recommendations from existing small group leaders
  • Announcing a need for new group leaders and asking people to sign up

There are a number of reasons why people are hesitant to be group leaders. When asking
people to serve in this important role, we should provide support, encouragement, and
coaching to help them in their journey. For new leaders especially, they should have an
appointed coach to help them.

Once new group leaders are identified, it is ideal to have a short training session to help
them get started. While there are a lot of things group leaders need to know, experts find
that prolonged training sessions aren’t effective.

SmartGroups has a new group leader application form that you can use to collect interest. In the
Church Settings menu, make sure “Allow Group Leader Sign Up” is turned on so everyone can apply
with the “Want to lead a group?” form on the main menu. As people sign up, overseers get a
notification and the list of applicants can be found under the “Review Applications” link in the Church
Settings menu. The innocuous question “Anything .. that might distress or shame the church”
question is a simple way to get this important situation out of the way. While few people will have this
situation, it is better to know about this from the onset. And people who are in a challenging situation
can start to receive much needed pastoral care.