Why You Need A Job Description

Courtesy of Waponi/Creative Commons License

When you tell someone you are youth minister what is their first response?  Many people ask me in return, “What’s your full time job?” After explaining to them that youth ministry is my full time job, it always leads into a conversation on how that’s possible.

Not sure why it is you got into youth ministry; however, if you plan on doing it for the long haul you need to know what it is you are doing. The best way to clarify what it is you do is with a job description.  On top of telling you and others your hours, pay and required certifications, a job description gives you identity.  While you’ll always be a team player, and need to pick up odd jobs here and there, in the end you need to have focus and focus.  And, when you have those components it will move you forward.

What do you need for an effective job description?

  • General Description – If you could sum up your job in one sentence, what would that be?  Answering this question will serve as a foundation for when life gets chaotic.  If you’ve ever questioned why you do what you do, this will be your answer.  It’s a vision for your position.
  • List Of Responsibilities – This could be an endless list; however, try to narrow it down to 5 – 10 must do jobs.  As a youth minister this should include delegating responsibilities, creating programs and communicating with others.  It should also talk about who you work with and why.
  • Expected Results – In a given year (or next job review) what do you hope to see from this job?  Whatever it is make it tangible.  This might include improving leader to student ratio or the implementation of workshops or events in a given year.  Set them high; however, make them achievable.
  • Areas Of Accountability – Who do you report to and who do you manage?  When you know the direct lines of report, you will know who to go to in times of need.  It will also help others know who you are responsible for managing and what programs you oversee.

After you have created a job description run it by your pastor and have others give you feedback.  They might see something that you’ve missed.  Don’t be afraid to tweak it because as you grow in experience some of your responsibilities will change.  If your church doesn’t have annual job reviews set one up with someone you know and trust in your church.  The feedback will help you grow.

With a clear job description you will have a clear picture on what it is you do.  Being a youth minister is not the same from church to church.  It’s a job position many people aren’t familiar with knowing.  The more clarity you can produce the more efficient you can be in growing young disciples.

What else would you included in a job description?