I was talking to an incredbly sharp youth worker friend last week about a question he was asked during his interview process: what is your 30, 60 & 90 day plan for our youth ministry. Now, honestly, I think some of the motivation behind this question may be to get an idea of the growth an elder board/leadership they can expect from the new youth worker. 

But the question isn’t a bad one entirely and honestly if you don’t have a plan going in the first few months will be scattered and less impactful then they should be. Here’s what I’ve lerned about some first steps when taking over a youth ministry program. They happened to start with “P” – a fact I discovered awkwardly while talking to this youth worker on the phone. Anyhow …

Knowing the past of a youth ministry is incredibly important. Getting an idea of what they were good at, what they loved and valued, what happened to the last youth worker is essential when laying a groundwork for the future. Before you ever say “yes” to a new position/promotion you should be well aware of evey nuance of history.

Why does the youth group exist? An articulate purpose statement, and matching that statement to the past makes a lot of sense. If they don’t have a clear purpose and set of passions, you’ll need to make establishing one an early priority.

In the first 30 days, you’ve got to see who’s on your team. Be warned about the first few people who befriend you, those are often times parents or volunteers ostircised by the last youth worker. Spend time with everyone your can possibly spend time with in your church – everyone will help you get context and start the foundation for the future.

As you head into the 60-day range, you’ve seen many of the ongoing programs. You can see what is working, what needs improvement and what needs to euthanized. Begin to formulate (but definitely not publicisze) your kiss, marry, kill list. 

This is your action plan. Aroung 90 days in, you should be able to articulate where you’re headed and establish some priorities for the coming year. Good luck and God bless!

Remember, health takes time. Be careful about promising too much, and temper expectations as you start out. And come up with as specific as possible