In kindergarten, I was introduced to something called “The Buddy System” that has revolutionized my ministry. The concept is this “never go anywhere without your buddy.” After all my schooling was done, I began to employ this concept in my ministry; I never did anything without a buddy. I made sure that wherever I went or whatever I did, I had someone there to participate with me. Using the buddy system for leadership development in the church looks like this:
Whatever you do or wherever you go, you should be taking someone with you for the purpose of training them to do what you are doing and go where you are going. Don’t go alone. Always bring someone with you. Get them to pray. Get them to cast vision. Get them to teach. Get them to lead the meeting.
Every volunteer in your church needs to have a buddy who is learning to do what they are doing for the purpose of taking over that ministry. A big part of leadership needs to be reproducing yourself. If every leader in your organization is not on a mission to reproduce themselves, then it will be difficult to grow. It’s important to have a culture of leadership development.
Your buddy is your friend. We need to treat our buddy as a friend. We need to let them fail. We need to develop a relationship with them beyond the tasks at hand. We need to pour our life into theirs. Jesus did it with the twelve. We can do the same thing with a buddy.
Now you can call this whatever you want but the principles are the same. The buddy system isn’t perfect and sometimes you’ll have people who don’t have a buddy. It starts with you the leader; you model it in your own ministry. From there, challenge your leaders to “buddy up.”