“Then he selected twelve of them to be his regular companions, calling them apostles. He sent them out to preach.” Mark 3:14
Jesus, our premier role model for leadership, had relationships with people of many different levels of involvement. There were the multitudes, the disciples, the apostles, and then, the three. Each level of involvement demanded a varying level of Jesus’ leadership capacity, care, and accountability.
These leadership and care structures have tremendous application in our own contexts. Think about the ministry you serve in. Are you mindful of your expectation level for those who serve and lead with you? For example, Jesus naturally expected Peter (one of his inner three apostles) to be continually present with him on the journey, an expectation he did not hold for those in the crowds.
In Exodus 18, we see this tiered leadership structure being used by Moses, particularly as it relates to his span of care.
Span of Care- a term used to describe the number of people being cared for by someone.
Jethro. Moses’ father-in-law, helped Moses to develop his span of care by determining ratios between leaders and the people. Jethro knew that the more people you lead, the fewer people you are personally pouring into. If one or two people are providing care all by themselves, their team members are being short-changed.
Those who are serving and leading naturally desire to have a relationship with those who are leading them. In response to this basic need and to the biblical example set, River Valley has developed a Lifeteam’s structure that models both Moses’ and Jesus’ examples.
As you look at teams and develop team structures, think and pray about the following ratios:
- Lifeteams are designed to consist of a team of 3-10 people who serve together consistently.
- Lifeteam leaders are encouraged to have the responsibility of leading no more than 10 people in total, in order to provide a balanced life and the individual care each team member deserves.
- Lifeteam coaches are assigned no more than 5 Lifeteam leaders to pour into and to assist them in navigating team dynamics.