Practical ideas for training your youth leaders

We oftentimes say phrases like, “train leaders, ” or “develop leaders.” Well, my question is, what does this look like? If we are training and developing leaders, what does it look like when we are doing just that? I basically want to take it a step further on your leaders, and how you can practically train them. Here are a few thoughts and ideas for practically training your youth leaders:




  1. Hold all leaders accountable– Accountability is training. It provides discipline. Every leader in your ministry should be held accountable by someone. We have leaders specifically designed to hold my small group leaders accountable. That is their primary job. We have about 25 youth leaders and 10 student leaders, and it is impossible for me to hold each one of them accountable so we placed people in charge of that. Hold them accountable on faithfulness, making sure that they get the job done, discipling students, that they are having a healthy small group, and keep them accountable on their personal relationship with Jesus.
  2. Provide group training– The times of these meetings is solely up to you. We try to do a leader meeting every two months. This meeting is informative, but we also throw in a mix on training and leadership development. I will train on a healthy small group, pointers for their small group, contacting students outside of youth group, and much more. If you do not have a group training meeting scheduled for your leaders, you need to schedule one.
  3. Take them to leadership development conferences– Next year, we are going to really work on leader development. I want to focus on training more than ever before. So, I am looking at scheduling some seminars to help develop them and myself in our leadership. Provide times like this for them. Try and cut cost as much as you possibly can for them to be trained in their leadership development.
  4. Model what you desire– If you ask the small group leaders to do something, you better be doing it. Everything rises and falls on leadership. I always try to model what I expect from my leaders!
  5. Always share vision– Your leaders need to hear where you are wanting to take them and their ministry! This is very important. All student pastors have ideas, goals, and vision, but sometimes we struggle to articulate it. This is vital to the success and development of your leaders.

If you have any thoughts on training leaders, please comment below or send a direct email to!

3 thoughts on “Practical ideas for training your youth leaders

    1. Thanks Doug! Hey man, appreciate you stopping by the blog. I still remember you tearing us up back in high school on the basketball court bro. Those were the good ole days. Hope you are doing well. Have a good one!

  1. Josh,

    Great thoughts! Training leaders is an area of student ministry that I am passionate about and excited about doing here in the next few months in my first youth pastor position. These are some great thoughts to apply for me. Thanks for sharing!


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