One of the biggest issues I see in many worship leaders and their bands is a failure to communicate.
If you can effectively and efficiently communicate to your band, not only will they feel more confident in their playing, but your worship will take another step in the right direction.
For instance, I know there’s a big band break right after the second chorus, but if I don’t clearly explain this, my drummer might not fall out and my guitarist might keep shredding a solo. However, if everyone in my band knows exactly where we drop out and faithfully executes their parts, we eliminate any sort of music distraction while at the same time helping to create a worshipful atmosphere.
Speaking the Same Language…
We have to speak the same language. Having been married for almost 10 years, I understand the difficulty and work it takes to speak the same language. There’s a reason there are hundreds and hundreds of books on marriage and communication…because it’s not easy. But it is necessary for a good relationship.
The same holds true for worship teams. Everyone needs to be on the “same page.”
Tips for Better Communication
Being prepared is a key component when it comes to communicating with your team. This means that you, as the leader, are prepared both spiritually and musically. It means you have to know the songs, the scriptures, and that you have spent time connecting with God through private worship.
It also means that you have prepared the songs for your team. You’ve sent the music to them, along with the notes for each song and the overall worship flow.
Email Notes and Expectations
Once you get yourself and your songs prepared, utilize your available resources like a simple email. Share your vision for the week, how God has been working in and through these songs, and how each person plays a vital role in helping your church worship.
You can include notes for each song, particular song parts and notes for each person. Let them know what you are expecting from them and then follow through.
Getting the music to your team is also extremely important. You want your team to worship through these songs and, in turn, to know them. And not just musically, although that’s important; it’s just as important for them to know and love the songs.
You can use Planning Center or other worship planning software. You could also put your Sunday playlist in Spotify or upload your mp3s to Dropbox. No matter what you do, make sure you are getting the music out to your team well in advance and that you’re doing it legally. That might mean you have to get a Rehearsal license from CCLi or buy everyone an iTunes card. Regardless, resource your team with the music you will be leading.
Rehearsal Walk Through
During our band rehearsal, I find it very beneficial to take the first few minutes with each song and walk through the intros, builds, drops, ending and transitions. Make sure you are connecting with each band member and that they are taking notes.
As you go through each song, don’t be afraid to stop and go over each part with your team, especially if your team isn’t doing what you’re asking. Take your time and walk through it with them.
These are just a few of the things I do when I’m leading my team. It’s being intentional about communicating as well as being open to the ebb and flow of our team. It’s important to find what works best for you and to make sure you are leading your team and not leaving them.
This article originally appeared here.