Get The Most Out Of Your Parent Meetings

Courtesy of Dreamstime

Parent meetings…where to start?  Well, we know they are important.  They are important because we are here to partner with parents, work with families and empower them.  Again, we know they are important; however, most of us treat them like they are a chore or even worst a burden.  We try to make parent meetings fun, engaging and memorable; however, we end up leaving disappointed.

When we feel the disappointment we try to convince ourselves that these meetings are a waste of time.  However, deep down inside we know they are not.  Meetings with parents are important because they allow us to partner, support and walk with them on their teen’s faith journey.  So, if you are going to meet with parents (and I think you should) you need to make sure you are aware of these three areas:

  • Purpose: Why are you meeting?  Yes, it’s important; but, why are you asking them to come in on a Tuesday night, two weeks before Christmas?  Rule number one when it comes to any meeting, don’t meet just to meet, have a purpose.  If it’s a workshop on sex and dating, good.  If it’s to implement a new program, great.  If it’s to provide a guest speaker on a specific topic, awesome.  If they see no purpose they will either skip out or come grumpy.
  • Expectations: While you expect parent’s to treat you with the utmost respect you need to make sure you do the same in return.  Therefore, make sure every meeting you hold has a solid beginning and end time, an agenda and a clear format (Check out this post on the 5 steps to an effective meeting)  Prepare for them, just as you would your students.  Look over your content and ask yourself, “Is this worthy of their busy schedules?
  • Takeaway: Just as you commission your teens each time you see them, you need to do the same with their parents.  Whether it’s a follow up, resource or challenge, your commission is empowering them to help you grow disciples.  It doesn’t have to be tangible; however, it should be something that helps them realize why your meeting was worth it.

I know there pressure to run an effective meeting (here’s a post on what not to do); but, if you lean into the pressure the reward to your ministry’s health are amazing.  You can’t be an effective youth minister without the parents.  It’s not about separating the family but bringing them together.  When you hold your meetings know why and what you want them to get out of it.  If you stick to that formula you will get the most of your parent meetings.
How do you run an effective parent meeting?