Constructive Criticism During Worship Rehearsal (Q&A)
This article is a part of a new feature on our site. It is a series we call "The Leadership Roundtable" - where a team of "experts" take a question that was submitted and answer it here on our site so that it may help others out there that may have the same question. If you have a question you'd like to submit, contact us!
I'm involved in a worship team at my church and we are growing and developing very quickly. We are struggling when practicing to find the balance between being considerate of the different personalities with regard to giving constructive criticism and advice on how we play and sing and speaking in truth to the band members in order for us to grow technically.
There are some members of the band that have more experience and knowledge of how different instruments and vocals can blend together but we don't know whether these people should speak their ideas during practice as some people may not take well to this as they enjoy what they play already. Or, should the band leader direct everyone musically even if sometimes it may be taken criticism.
The best way to take care of this no matter what situation of a worship team you are in, is to let the worship leader/director/pastor be the one to critique. If it was a band that specifically played shows and was limited in number of people with all having an equal share then it would be a different story.
A way to honor the opinions and expertise on the team is to have a few select people meet together over coffee or maybe a separate time of collaboration. This can be a very small group of individuals that steer the team musically and creatively. When this creative tank has worked out the songs, musicianship and/or any issues; the main leader can then assign, critique, correct and execute the worship set.
It's crucial to allow those who are more experienced have a say, but also trimming the fat of possible pride that can develop when the team gets into examining and correcting each other during a practice.
If ideas are to be offered during a practice with a worship team/ministry, it should be when a traffic jam happens during transitions, ministry moments or similar items. Also, the key leader should continually be asking for feedback but it should be given and discussed away from the practices. The only exception is if a separate time is set for a relaxed environment of vision casting, idea and heart sharing over dinner, coffee or as in Europe..."tea."
A practice should be a safe place where ideas can be offered, people built up, corrected. It should be inspired with collaboration from the team but channeled through the leader of the ministry.
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