Great job at getting your Huddle started! Now it is time to prepare for conducting a successful Huddle-Up. Ok – you may be asking yourself right now, what is the difference between a Huddle and a Huddle-Up. Great question!
- Huddle: A group of small group ministry leaders within a geographical location.
- Huddle-Up: The meeting that occurs throughout the year where small group ministry leaders connect to share stories, resources and much more.
- Huddle Leader: This person assumes responsibility for creating the Huddle within the Small Group Network website & establishes meeting times for the Huddle-Ups. It is important that only the Huddle Leaders/Creator can make adjustments to the Huddle-Ups within the system.
Ok – now you know the basic definitions, it is time to start preparing for your Huddle-Up. Remember, leading a Huddle-Up is much like leading a small group. The main difference, is that you are gathering a group of small group ministry leaders, opposed to a variety of different vocational backgrounds. The purpose of this gathering is to create an atmosphere of collaboration so every participant feels heard and supported. You also want to ensure the Huddle-Up offers tips, resources, & materials that provides value to small group ministry leaders.
The following Huddle Leader tips were provided by existing small group ministry leaders from around the world. Enjoy!
Use the Huddle Leader Tool in the Small Group Network website (Inviting, RSVP’s, emailing, roster management)
Have a plan – Don’t wing it.
Open up in prayer.
Consider your audience – Small Group Ministry Leaders.
Invite people – Be brave.
Have free food.
Play soft background music – create a relaxed atmosphere.
Have some creative ice-breakers prepared.
Bring in guest speakers.
Make people feel welcome – smile & open body language.
Provide generous listening.
Ask lots of open-ended questions.
Encourage group participation – everyone has something special to offer.
Rotate group discussion – you don’t always have to lead the discussion.
Send texts, emails, and social media in-between Huddle-ups – make people feel special.
Ask the group to write down some topics of discussion on a 3 x 5 card and then collect the card. You can use those ideas for future Huddle-Ups.
If your Huddle-Up is large, create a spontaneous panel of 3 or 4 people and then allow the participants to ask questions to the panel. This is a great way to learn from others.
Calendar your next Huddle-Up. If it’s not on the calendar, it’s not going to happen.