CTA, Inc.

Building a Leadership Pipeline

Item#: MM19BLP


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A Leadership Pipeline is a way to involve all members in your congregation, help them find an area to serve, and keep them growing!

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Introduction: Ephesians 4:12 calls churches to equip believers for the work of the ministry. We can’t do that by micromanaging each person. The long-term strategy is to teach people to lead themselves and, eventually, lead others.


  • Leadership mentors are incredibly important. But this mentoring relationship rarely happens naturally. People need a leadership training system with structure and specific methods.
  • A leadership pipeline is a framework of intentional training that helps develop people who are not natural leaders into trained leaders. It’s a way of multiplying ministry. Many more people will develop and grow in their roles when you are intentional with the leadership pipeline.
  • The leadership pipeline grid
    • is as simple as a Google spreadsheet;
    • takes into account anybody serving in ministry;
    • lists leadership levels and training areas; and
    • show gaps in leadership development.
  • Leadership pipeline roles or “rungs on the ladder”
    • Lead yourself
    • Lead others
    • Lead leaders
    • Lead ministries
    • Lead the church
  • After analyzing the leadership pipeline grid
    • call people up to fill the gaps;
    • spread the load of leadership; and
    • get people up to new levels of leadership.
  • A learner profile provides a road map for developing each specific person. These take longer to develop than the grid.
  • Training programs are like recipes—there is more than one way to bake a cake. Experiment with the “ingredients” and see which “recipe” works best for each specific program.

Thought Starters:

  • Where do you currently see gaps in leadership at your church?
  • What key volunteers may be able to help you assemble a leadership pipeline of your own?


  • Designed to Lead by Eric Geiger and Kevin Peck
  • Find Pastor Adam Bowers’ resources at ministrylife.org/leadershippipeline

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