Being a Mentor

Being a Mentor

I am often asked what I do in mentoring situations.  The first thing to understand is that mentoring is a relationship, not a job, and not being the boss.  It’s about helping a person be all they can be in every area of life.  When a person asks me to mentor him, I make it clear that this means I will be relating to him in six areas of their lives.

  1. Relationship to God
  2. Relationship to Family Members
  3. Relationship to Community
  4. Relationship to Ministry
  5. Relationship to Work
  6. Relationship to Self

For a more in-depth look at these relationships please see Leadership Essentials – Mentors, Coaches & Trainers, and Teachers.

But, being a mentor is also about performance accountability.  In church planting we measure what gets or causes results, not the results themselves.  God saves, we evangelize.  God starts churches, we make obedient disciples.  So, with this in mind we measure the following.

  1. Who are you mentoring?  Depending on whether the leader is part time or full time, I expect to see a minimum of 2 or 5 people being mentored by the person I am mentoring.
  2. Who are the people your mentorees are mentoring?  If the people we are mentoring are not mentoring others, then we are wasting our time and the church planting cycle will end.
  3. How often are you meeting with those you mentor?  Less than once in two weeks does not build the relationships or the accountability necessary for good church planting to happen.  (I will discuss accountability issues in my next blog post.)
  4. What is the content of your mentoring sessions?  This shows whether a person has a plan for developing leaders.  If we have a plan, usually our followers will have a plan.  Without a plan results are sporadic at best.
  5. What are the prayer concerns or problems being raised by your mentorees?  We cannot improve a process if we do not know the problems in the process.  We cannot develop leaders if they hide their problems from us.  We cannot demonstrate care and build relationships outside of prayer.
  6. How many training sessions/seminars are you conducting for people you are not mentoring?  We find the people we will mentor by doing training and seminars for people not related to us at the moment.  My primary motivations for doing training events are to influence others and to find new persons to mentor.  If we are not training others we will not expand our ministry into new areas or develop new teams.  If we are not developing new team members we will not be able to expand into new areas.
  7. How many new communities did you and your teams enter in this reporting cycle?  If we are going to new places to plant the Gospel we will start new churches.
  8. How many Persons of Peace were encountered by your teams in this reporting cycle?  If we are not looking for and finding Persons of Peace we will not be able to start new Discovery Bible Studies.
  9. How many Discovery Bible Studies did you and your teams start/maintain during the reporting cycle?  If we are not starting new Discovery Bible Studies then we will not find new leaders to coach in order to make new disciples.
  10. How many Discovery Bible Study leaders are you and your team coaching? If we are not replicating leaders the church planting cycle will end?
  11. How many Discovery Bible Study groups have become Believers and been baptized into churches?  How many were baptized?
  12. How many church leaders are you coaching and leading in Obedience Bible Studies and Leadership Development Bible Studies?  If we are doing the teaching instead of coaching local leaders in how to do everything, we are not developing new leaders and church planting will not happen.
  13. How many church leaders have started new Discovery Bible Studies during this reporting cycle?  Are they coaching the new leader or leading the group themselves?

Measure what causes results and you will get the results you are looking for.  Of course, if you are not doing what you are trying to measure, you will most likely not get the results you want to see.  Church Planting is about managing your relationships, not about managing your paperwork.  Build relationship systems around mentoring and you will see Church Planting Movements.  If you build management systems you will get an office, not church planting.

Blessings!

David Watson
Irving, Texas

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