Why Your Staff Deserves Your Complete Attention as a Leader

Why Your Staff Deserves Your Complete Attention as a Leader

As a leader, you don’t have infinite capacity. You can only give so much of yourself to your staff, congregants, community members, donors, and other church relationships. And that means you have to make tough choices about which relationships you invest the most time and energy into.

At last year’s Summit conference, Tyler Reagin, former president of Catalyst, shared a frustrating experience he had on a team he used to be part of:


This leader was giving all his attention and focus to people outside of his team, and his team regularly witnessed a clear difference between the way their leader interacted with them and the way he interacted with others.

Here’s why Tyler says your team deserves the best from you.

Your team sacrifices a lot as they follow your vision

You have a vision for your church—a plan for what you’d like to accomplish and where you want your church to be in the future. And your team is investing in that vision every day. They’re working with you to accomplish what God has called your church to do, and they’re following you as you follow God.

Being on a church staff can be mentally, emotionally, and spiritually taxing. Many of your team members pour all of their energy into reaching the goals you’ve helped set and working toward the vision you’ve cast. When your team sees you treat others with more kindness and attention than you show them, it can feel like you don’t care about (or notice) their sacrifice.

It leaves room for some of them to wonder, “Do you actually care what we’re doing here?”

Your staff desires a close relationship with you

Nobody expects to be your best friend on day one of working with you. But when you spend all day, every day with your staff, intimacy and friendship should be a natural byproduct. Over time, you should develop unique, meaningful relationships with your team. 

If your team constantly experiences a rift between the way you treat others and the way you treat them, some of them are always going to wonder why they’re getting your mental and emotional leftovers. No matter how many team-building exercises you do or experiences you share, you’re passively communicating that “the important people” are somewhere else.

Your staff wants to be close to you and valued by you. They look up to you. So show them that they matter to you.

Caring about your staff will help them grow

Tyler Reagin shared that God has entrusted you with the responsibility of leading and growing your team. If you’re not investing all you can in the people inside your circle, your team isn’t going to grow to its full potential. The leaders you’re developing aren’t going to be the best leaders they can be. 

When you treat your team like they truly matter to you—by giving them your full attention and the best of yourself—it creates ripples that carry over into their own areas of responsibility and the people in their own spheres of influence. The opposite can be true too.

Get more great insights from the Summit

Every year, Pushpay invites leaders like Tyler Reagin to discuss some of the most pressing topics facing today’s ministry staff. Right now you can watch the complete videos from each of our session speakers for free.

Watch now.

Ryan Nelson

Ryan was a volunteer youth leader with Young Life for eight years. Now he teaches people about the Bible on OverviewBible.com. He lives in Bellingham, Washington with his wife and three sons.