Profile of a Small Group Coach

As the church grows, I anticipate the need for many more new small groups; which means that we need leaders willing to step out in faith to make an impact on our community and eternity by shepherding other people. The pastor literally cannot do it alone.

Small group leaders are needed to shepherd a group of about 6-12 people. Out of this group the intent is to develop other leaders from within the group who will also be committed to the Great Commission and is looking forward to the day he or she can birth another small group of their own.

When we have several small groups meeting around the city or at church, there will come a time when we need small group coaches to help shepherd the small group leaders. Sounds confusing until you understand the Jethro model of ministry organization.

Catch this scene:

Moses has a father-in-law, Jethro, who stops by while the Israelites are camped in the wilderness near the mountain of God (Exodus 18:5). Moses tells him all the cool stuff God is doing for them (Exodus 18:8) and Jethro praises God (Exodus 18:10). The next day Jethro catches Moses at work, making decisions for the people (since Moses was the guy able to inquire of the Lord) and asks what he is doing, because it doesn’t look good (Exodus 18:14, 17).

Jethro said he needed to be involved in leadership training to teach the leaders how to minister to the majority of the people (Exodus 18:20, 21) bringing only the difficult cases to Moses. So, Moses takes the advice and developed a system of leadership and accountability for thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens (Exodus 18:25). Here’s what it would look like (to the right):

Snapshot of a Coach:

To serve, care for and develop a huddle of small group hosts (about 5 groups).

Coach Qualifications:

  • Must have a heart for reaching people and shepherding them.
  • A Person of FAITH:
    • Faithful: They follow through with commitments, proven track record of responsibility and follow-through.
    • Available: Willing to focus on coaching by making time to lead and to develop as a leader.
    • Initiative: Self-starter, takes responsibility, asks questions, proposes solutions, moves toward problems.
    • Teachable: Values learning and developing, listens well, takes instruction from many sources, values correction and criticism, not enslaved to their own ideology, spirit of humility.
    • Honest: Transparent, knowable, authentic, truthful, accurate, willing to confront when necessary.
  • Growing walk with God, strong character and a commitment to God’s redemptive plan.
  • The ability to lead leaders and hosts: encourage and hold accountable, people developer, team builder.
  • Ability to work a system and a plan; understanding authority and responsibility, taking initiative.
  • Good people skills: able to connect emotionally and build relationships with others.
  • Spiritual Gifts: They may include leadership, wisdom, discernment, shepherding and encouragement.

Related Images:

Profile of a Small Group Leader

I feel that small groups are the key to developing people into fully devoted followers of Christ. They are the place where people make connections to God and to one another. The Great Commission is a command of Christ that is given to individual believers, not to the church at large (Matthew 28:18, 19, 20). If we really believe that, it is an insult to our faith if we don’t seriously ask the question, “What can I do to help fulfill the Great Commission?” I submit to you that nearly anyone can learn how to lead a small group.

The key is not to focus so much on the teaching part. We all feel inadequate to teach others the Bible concerning spiritual things; after all, we are all just sinners saved by grace, no one is perfect. But do not let that false humility keep you from obeying the commands of Christ. I feel the better role of a small group leader is that of a shepherd more than a teacher (read here about the difference). God uses our weaknesses to bring himself glory (1 Corinthians 1:25, 27, 4:10, 2 Corinthians 12:10).

So, here is a brief summary of what I expect out of a small group leader:


To host or facilitate a small group to love God, love others and make disciples.


  • Has a heart for God.
  • Has a teachable spirit.
  • No addiction or moral issues (drugs, alcohol, cohabitation, etc.) that would set a bad example for others to follow or bring shame on the name of Jesus Christ.
  • No current marital struggles (i.e. infidelity, separation, divorce in process, etc.).


  • Will dedicate enough time to adequately facilitate the small group (average of three hours/week).
  • Will communicate updated group roster information to me (or a small groups coach).
  • Will participate in leader training meetings provided by KGBC.


  • Cultivate Relationships: Build a sense of community within the group through interaction, mutual prayer, and follow-up outside the group meeting time.
  • Promote Shared Ownership: Every group member should contribute to the group in some way (discussion leader, activity planner, follow-up calls, food, host home, etc.).
  • Identify Potential Group Leaders: Keep an eye out for others within the small group who may be candidates to host or lead a small group down the line.

Related Images: