Five Roles of a Small Group Leader

A small group leader has many roles to fill. The key to a healthy and multiplying group is to give as many of those roles away as soon as possible. You can identify which roles to give away first by knowing which ones are naturally weak for you. We all have areas of leadership where we are stronger and weaker. Someone in your group is going to excel in a role where you might struggle.

Here are what I believe are the top five roles (not in order) for every group leader. As you read the list, think about which ones you should start giving away now.

1. Fun Planner

A key to your group staying healthy is being intentional about planning fun activities during every semester or quarter. That can be a game night instead of a doing the study, going to a ballgame together, or organizing a picnic during the spring or summer.

2. Food Planner

The beginning of every group meeting should be a time of just hanging out, and food can be an important part of that first 20 minutes. It gives people in your group something to do while having important bonding conversations before the study portion of the meeting.

3. Host

Every group needs someone to officially host the meeting. That may include providing the space for the meeting, but it always includes being a smiling face at the door to set the tone for night. A good host will help lead to an effective meeting.

4. Shepherd

Your group members are needing more than a social time and a Bible study. The goal should be to have your small group feel like family. Families care for one another and are there for each other when circumstances are great and not so great. We should celebrate and weep with our group members equally.

5. Prayer Time

Prayer is an important element during the group time, but it’s also essential between meetings. A praying leader is a leader worth following. You should pray consistently and specifically for your group members each week.

Is there a role or two on that list that you can give away soon?

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About the author

Chris Surratt is a ministry consultant and coach with more than twenty years of experience serving the local church. Chris served on the Executive Teams at Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN., and Seacoast Church in Charleston, S.C., prior to becoming the Discipleship and Small Groups Specialist for LifeWay Christian Resources. He is the author of Small Groups for the Rest of Us and the just released, Leading Small Groups: How to Gather, Launch, Lead, and Multiply Your Small Group.