As your Youth Action Team gears up this fall, try implementing a few of these tips to amplify your team’s leadership growth and overall impact!
- Establish Committees – By dividing and conquering tasks, your Youth Action Team’s capacity is greatly improved. Committees help youth leaders not only accomplish more tasks, but by working in smaller groups, youth are able to take more leadership on their respective projects. While the committees might work separately on each project, they should report developments to the full board, asking for feedback and assistance, or simply keeping all members updated on the status of the project.
Pro Tip: Have committees create action items for each committee meeting, and appoint a Committee Chair to be responsible for assuring action items are addressed and communicated to the whole board.
- Install Officers – A well-oiled executive board makes all the difference when it comes to moving your Youth Action Team up the proverbial youth voice ladder, developed by Adam Fletcher. In order to do this well, give youth meaningful and clear roles. Build in specific expectations into officer descriptions, and spend time with your officers training them how to perform their duties. Once youth know what is expected of them and how to do it, you might be surprised at just how much time is saved with them on the job.
- Set Goals – While this may seem like a no-brainer, goal setting is easily put on the back burner as Youth Action Teams jump into the new school year. By setting goals at the beginning of the year or each semester like the GUIDE Youth Advisory Board does, your team knows what they are working toward. Write these goals on a flipchart, and post them at each meeting. As each task is completed, have members check them off.
Pro Tip: Make sure your goals aren’t just specific to events or campaigns—include learning and process goals that will set your team up for long-term success.
- Step Back – This is often cited as one of the most challenging aspects of being an Adult Advisor. We often think, “It will be easier if I just do it.” While it may seem easier in the short-run, you may be sacrificing the long-term development of your team and individual youth leaders.
The process of implementing these steps starts with a healthy dose of trust in your youth leaders, but once implemented, your team will only continue to grow! Let us know what your Youth Action Team is up to this fall on Twitter or Instagram by tagging us at @guidegti. You can also follow us on social media for even more leadership and team building tips.