Each month, we revisit a series of posts called Guest Services Road Trip. We’ll travel the country from the comforts of our couches, interviewing leaders who are in the trenches of ministry. Do you have an idea for GSRT destination? Have a leader I need to talk to? Want the inside scoop on churches that seem to be doing this hospitality thing really well? Let’s talk.
Kyler Sharp is the volunteer Hub Team Lead at The Living Stone Church in Broomfield, Colorado. The Living Stone is a portable church that meets in a local high school, and they have a weekly attendance of 150.
Kyler and his wife Jorji have been at The Living Stone for two years, and “Hub Team” is what they call their guest services ministry. Get in touch with him on Facebook.
What does your training process look like for your Hub Team volunteers?
Training is something that we’ve struggled with. It’s been difficult to balance the effort and time that is required to do a formalized “classroom” training with the fact that we have a new volunteer join the guest services team – at most – every four to six months. What ends up happening is that we require new people to learn through observing existing team members. That method works to a point, but it is something we hope to improve on.
Is guest services a “silo ministry” at The Living Stone? In other words, does your discipleship team, kids team, worship team, missions team, etc. view it as an essential part of their mission?
On a Sunday morning, the three things that are mission critical for us are preaching, worship, and kids ministry. In a young church plant, anything outside of those three things is often approached as a “nice to have” due to the lack of resources available. Understanding the need for guest services takes vision, so it’s important for those that understand the vision to share it with others. Setting aside time specifically for cross-team training and casting vision is one way to get others to see how guest services is an essential part of their mission.
What is a challenge you’re currently facing on your Hub Team?
Volunteer availability. A lot of the people who would excel at guest services are already volunteering in our kids ministry several times a month. We try to be conscious not to burn people out by asking them to serve too often. Our Hub Team is very small so it is noticeable when someone is unavailable to serve.
What has been one of the biggest mistakes you’ve made in leading your team and/or implementing a guest services culture?
We originally created a guest services team by filling it with people that were available instead of filling it with the right people. We had a setup team that got to church early, and once they were finished with setup we gave them jobs like greeting and passing out bulletins. Logistically that made sense, but realistically the people that volunteered for the setup team typically did not have the gifting (or desire) to engage new people.
How do you define success on a weekend…either personally or professionally?
We’re successful when we are able to engage first timers before AND after service. Part of that engagement is to let them know they are welcome, find out what brought them to church or what they’re looking for, and informing them how they can fit into our church. (small groups, service opportunities, discipleship class, etc.)
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