Worship Team Criteria – How to Build a Healthy Team

Many of us may have found ourselves in a team that is not committed. This usually causes frustration, disappointment, and, in the worst of cases, creates conflict within the team. The devil is always trying to find his way into our groups and cause division and bad relationships. So how can we avoid these problems?

Setting a worship team criteria can help us form a healthy team that’s aware of the requirements and has thought about the cost of what it means to be a part of the worship team.

Let’s look at how we can set these standards in a loving way that allows the team to give their best without causing pain or misunderstandings.

Why do we need criteria?

Worship-Team-Criteria-StandardWorship team criteria are necessary to set standards.

Standards define the functionality and level of the team.

Whoever wants to join the team must agree with and accept the requirements of the group.


This has two significant positive consequences:

  1. People who are unwilling to commit will not be able to join the team. It is much easier to avoid that someone joins a team, rather than dealing with this person later on.
  2. Setting criteria gives awareness to the team of how the team is doing. In this way, everybody is accountable to each other since there is a criterion on which everyone is confronted.

Without set standards, we will end up with a team of people who are unaware of what is required of them. This directly influences the outcome of the group. Many times we may have people joining a team or a ministry because they are led by enthusiasm, but they don’t actually have a calling for this type of ministry. We always want to welcome people who have a servant’s heart, but it needs to be clear what is required of them, and evaluate if they are capable of meeting such criteria.

Let me give you an example: If I have someone who wants to sing or play in the group but he or she doesn’t know how to sing or play, well, this will not go very well. If you see the person is committed but doesn’t have the skills yet, we can wait and see if he is really committed. We could ask this person to get some training and then we will consider them again when they are more prepared. This will reveal if they are really committed or not.

Setting criteria

Worship-Team-Criteria-EncouragementWhen setting worship team criteria, we need to consider where we are starting from. We need to be reasonable, realistic, and know where we want to go, but also know where we are coming from.

For example, let’s say that we are part of a small community and the people who are willing to be a part of the team don’t know much about worship, aren’t able to play in a skillful way and there is not much equipment since the church doesn’t have the budget for it.

These are the steps that I would follow in a situation like this (which I have been in):

  1. Engage with your team, create friendships – This is fundamental in any team. A team that knows each other will be open and transparent, will support each other and will enjoy meeting together.
  2. Give spiritual foundations – First of all, people need to be aware of what they are doing — what is worship? What is praise? How do we encounter God? And so on… Even if we have a talented team, if the spiritual foundations are not in place, we won’t go very far. We can’t take people where we haven’t been ourselves.
  3. Worship-Team-Criteria-EvaluationPrepare and practice – This is where it can become more difficult. If the team is unskilled, the practice time can be frustrating. Something to keep in mind is that we can’t ask people to do something that they are not able to do. Keep things as simple as possible. After all, it’s not about the music.
  4. Encourage the members to get training – It’s true that worship is not about the music, but being able to master your instrument will allow you to be more concentrated in where the Holy Spirit wants to take the team and the assembly.
  5. Have regular meetings – In these meetings, you check on how everyone is doing and the team can evaluate the ministry and see if the goals have been reached or not. These moments are very important not only for evaluation but also to support and pray for one another. This will bind the team together reinforcing the friendships.

In this case, the worship team criteria would be based less on the performance, and more on the commitment of each member to work toward a vision together.

I always consider this to be the most important thing in any kind of team. Commitment leads to growth in all aspects, both technically and artistically.

How to choose team members

When choosing team members, the things that I consider are:


  • The average level of the team
  • Where the person is spiritually
  • The person’s skill level and training
  • Most important — is it their calling?

It’s very hard to suggest team requirements since there are many different contexts and we are all different. Something I would suggest is to not sacrifice the worship team criteria.

Let’s say there is a young person who wants to join the team. We see that they have a calling for worship ministry, but at the moment they don’t have the preparation for it. In this case, I wouldn’t put this person on a stage. Instead, I would encourage them to come to the practice times and to the meetings so that they can catch the vision and have an idea of how the team functions. Then, little by little, I would give them space to perform on stage too.

In this way, we haven’t sacrificed the worship team criteria, and we are making disciples and multiplying the ministry.

Worship team criteria – Love is always the way

Worship-Team-Criteria-Team-LoveWe can’t do anything if we forget who we are we doing it for. Even if we work with the most stubborn people, we must remember to do things in love. This doesn’t mean we accept everything, but how we handle situations is what makes the difference.

Jesus calls us to make disciples. Leading others means serving them. A good leader facilitates others to rise up in their calling.

We do not need to control people. However, there are bound to be times where we must correct team members with love, just like God does with us.

I always try to be as inclusive as possible while still maintaining the worship team criteria and the fact that the worship ministry is a precious thing and should be handled that way.

If we have love and grace with our members without sacrificing the standards, people will appreciate the fact that they are loved, and at the same time, they will value the ministry because we have taught them that it’s precious.

Final thoughts

Setting a worship team criteria is a guideline for us and for those who join or want to join the team. Since it is a criterion we must remember that love is the reason why we do it. Jesus many times rebuked the Pharisees because they put the law before love. They forgot that the law was made for the people and not the people for the law.

I hope this article has helped show that standards are important and necessary to teach value to others. At the same time, we must not become dictators since this leads to disaster and completely misses the purpose of the ministry itself.

Click here to read about Building a Worship Team – How to Establish Solid Foundations

I hope you liked this article. Please leave any questions or comments below.

God bless you,


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4 thoughts on “Worship Team Criteria – How to Build a Healthy Team

  1. Hi Andy
    Thank you for a great article. I wish I learnt this many years ago when I was part of a worship group. The lack of criteria requirement led the group to be unsuccessful. Really good insights here, commitment and sharing the vision is important.

    1. You are welcome Angee,
      This happens many times since if there is a lack of clarity on the expectations we often see frustration and disappointment in some of the members.
      God bless you

  2. Our worship team is very small, They all seem to bring something different to the team. I think that having some criteria for the team and getting them together to practice is what makes them a better group.
    I will keep this information handy for the next time someone wants to join the group and see if they bring something new to the group.
    Do you think that the group should decide if someone is good or not, or should you just have a leader in charge?

    1. Hi Jhon,
      Good question. I believe it’s good to have a leader, but a good leader shares his leadership. If the group doesn’t feel good about someone I would prayerfully consider it before allowing this person to join. If this could cause friction in the group I would try to avoid it.
      As leaders maybe we can share with the group why we would like a specific person to join, for example, we see potential in them and so on.
      I hope this answers your question.
      God bless

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