Our goal, as leaders, is to encourage the clubbers who attend Awana. Unfortunately, we sometimes do better at discouraging rather than encouraging. Here are 10 easy ways leaders often discourage their clubbers. Can you think of any others?
1. By not bothering to learn their names. After all, you have so much to learn these days – things like the passwords to all your social media accounts, how to set your DVR to record your favorite show, the stats of your favorite football players and of course, the location of all the nearest Starbucks. Who has time to learn the names of kids you see just a couple hours a week?
2. By never being organized enough to actually have kids in specific handbook groups or teams. Each week you plan to get around to making a list of who’s in whose handbook group, but time gets away. So, the next week you randomly assign kids to groups. That way leaders don’t get to know clubbers and develop a one-on-one relationship with them. Clubbers get no personal encouragement or motivation.
3. By inconsistent attendance. Just show up every few weeks and decide you’re too tired or too busy during the in between weeks. Of course, when one of your clubbers has something exciting to share with you … you won’t be there.
4. By planning a special night and not letting the clubbers know there won’t be any time to listen to sections. The kids will be anxious to show you the hard work they did on learning sections during the week, but won’t have the opportunity because the schedule is full.
5. By having a theme night but then not mentioning it when the night actually arrives. I saw a club do this – they planned a backwards night, but nothing was said about it during the evening. No points for teams. No leaders dressed backwards. No nothing. So why pay attention to the next theme night?
6. By not encouraging kids to memorize, but by simply agreeing with them that they have busy schedules and can’t do it.
7. By not knowing any of the verses yourself and having to check every word.
8. By not being familiar with the handbooks. A clubber asks a basic question about what’s required and you don’t know the answer or even where to get the answers.
9. By not making a big deal out of a clubber reaching a milestone (for instance, a Jewel or Discovery) or not making a big deal when a clubber completes a book. Maybe you simply hand the award to her in handbook group rather than let her receive it in front of the other clubbers.
10. By forgetting to turn in milestone achievements to the secretary so that the clubber doesn’t get the award he’s earned. Everyone else gets to go up front to a lot of applause, but he just sits there waiting for his name, but alas …
Can you think of any other ways leaders discourage clubbers?