4 KEYS TO GET USEFUL FEEDBACK ON YOUR WORSHIP LEADING
How do we get useful feedback from our congregation about our gathered worship life together?
Just as is necessary for growth in any areas of our lives, we can improve our worship leading by asking for the opinions and feedback of those around us.
While not everything will be observed by those in our congregation, getting feedback gives us some level of objective input on our individual strengths and weaknesses as worship leaders, and also on our team’s strengths and weaknesses.
1. Ask everyone a little.
2. Ask select people more.
3. Ask leaders even more.
4. Ask yourself, and ask God.
KEY 1 – ASK EVERYONE A LITTLE
Ask everyone a little.
We don’t want to take our cues from everyone who has an opinion. Someone once said, “Opinions are like noses. Everyone has one, and they are all different.”
However, we can get some sense as to how our whole congregation is engaging in the worship experience by asking a lot of people.
If you’re going to do a survey, as some worship leaders choose, we encourage you to keep it under three questions. Don’t give people a long questionnaire.
Leave some space for them to write what they think, or try a few quick questions that really get to the heart of their response.
KEY 2 – ASK SELECT PEOPLE MORE
Ask select people more.
Who are these ‘select’ people? ‘Select’ people are people you trust to have some helpful perspective, and to offer without pulling punches unnecessarily.
These people will volunteer their honest opinion. They will tell you what they love about the worship experience, and what bugs them to no end.
Even if their opinion seems wrong, it remains their opinion and comes from somewhere.
Become a student of these peoples’ opinions, listening for the ‘thoughts behind the thoughts’ they offer. Find these people in your support team or congregation, and be intentional in seeking their perspective.
You may find something worth changing, or you may not. But the quest is worth it.
KEY 3 – ASK LEADERS EVEN MORE
Ask your pastor and leaders even more.
When it comes to leaders, we usually all have strong opinions. For those leaders in your own church, they have a vested interest in the team winning, and in worship “going well.”
Get initial feedback from your congregation, and then gather the leaders in your church – all at once if you can – to hear what they have to say. Maybe an opportunity to get feedback from this group may occur at a retreat or an elders’ meeting.
Allow the leaders to reflect off one another, and get them thinking deeply if their first answers seem to lack reflection. Have a set meeting with your pastor quarterly where you ask the question:
“In your view, is our worship life as a church taking us forward in our discipleship, and furthering the values, sense of purpose, and mission of our congregation?”
KEY 4 – ASK YOURSELF, AND ASK GOD
Ask yourself, and ask God.
Sometimes, we as worship leaders actually have the clearest and best thoughts on what’s actually happening in worship. Why? Because we’re seeing the congregation in the activity of worship week after week.
Every time we get up to lead, we’re perceiving what’s going on in the room even if we’re not consciously attempting to do so. Your opinion matters in evaluating the state of worship in your congregation, so make sure you’re in the mix.
Of course, we want to go to God on a regular basis. We want to ask, “Father, what do you see going on here in the hearts of people, and in our life together? How can we all grow in our worship life as a community?”
Try at least one idea the next time you need feedback.
- To get useful feedback on your worship leading, be sure to ask everyone a little. Your congregation is engaging in worship with you, so they will have some great thoughts as to what is working and what is not.
- Be sure to take the honest opinions of those select few who will be thoughtful and honest.
- Note that the leaders in your church will also have strong opinions about the worship experience, and take the time to communicate often that you value their perspective. Make sure your pastors feel as though they can always speak into the worship life of the community.
- Most importantly, however, trust your instincts (generally we’re hard on ourselves) and ask God to show you what He thinks. Ask Him what’s He’s doing behind the scenes, that you can’t yet see, and how you can be more effective in leading His church into worship that pleases His heart.
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