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Pastor Involvement with Church Coaching Ministry

Sep 25th, 2009 | By | Category: Coaching and the Church

Convincing the Big Kahuna:  how important “he” is to implementing coaching

Part 3 of 12 – How to Inject the Church with Coaching


Me?  In a coaching class?

Me? In a coaching class?

During the first round of our church staff coach training, he spent most of the time on his new Blackberry. A year later, during the second round of training, he informed me he was leaving early.  It would be one thing if the “he” I was referring to was just my good friend, staff colleague and assistant basketball coaching buddy, but it turns out the “he” was also the lead pastor of our church. Hence, we had a problem, since he was not fully engaged in the staff-wide coaching training which our senior staff had agreed upon.


 Shortly after the second training, he and I had an intense discussion, brother to brother, about his involvement, commitment and future expectation. When the dust cleared, the following insight became obvious about the role of the lead pastor when attempting to inject a coaching methodology into the DNA of paid and unpaid staff:


1.       BIG PRESSURES: Lead pastors have incredible weekly pressures like no other person on a typical staff, so others with agendas for the pastor need to take this into consideration.

2.       TRUST MATTERS: Lead pastors must trust and believe in the person or team that is carrying the banner for coaching.

3.       MUST BE THERE: Lead pastors who want entire staffs to commit to new skills and methodologies, like coaching, must fully participate in trainings to show the value.

4.       EXPERIENCE NECESSARY: Lead pastors who experience the benefits of coaching are much more likely to formally or informally champion the cause.

5.       EXPERTS REQUIRED: Lead pastors, most likely, will need training from outside experts and testimonies from other reputable lead pastors or churches to consider integrating coaching into their staff DNA.

6.       CONSISTENT VOICE: Lead pastors must be able to clearly understand and communicate the need for coaching in their body and how it differs from other helping professions.

7.       MANDATE IT: Lead pastors must include “developing the skill of coaching” in employee evaluation forms so that there is staff-wide accountability on a regular basis.


After speaking with many others who are struggling to bring coaching into their local church, I have become more and more grateful for my friend and colleague, otherwise known as “he” – the lead pastor,  and his willingness to trust, grow and expand our church with coaching.


Next month:  Part 4 – Find a Passionate Coaching Partner


Brian Rhen

Pastor of People Development

Peninsula Covenant Church

Redwood, California

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