The Importance of Training Your Church Protector Team (2 of 2)

If you have not read part one of this blog click HERE and read part one first.

What Is Employee Training?

I love the British Dictionary definition of Training: “the process of bringing a person, … to an agreed standard of proficiency, by practice and instruction” For our purposes here, training is a process of utilizing a systematic and organized procedure. Generally, in this process personnel acquire technical knowledge and skills for a definite purpose. In addition, it refers to instructions in technical, mechanical or any sort of operational process. 

What Is Development?

Development defined: the act or process of growing, progressing, or developing. The product or result of developing. Development is a long-term educational process utilizing a systematic and organized procedure. In this process, church protectors get conceptual and theoretical knowledge. However, it doesn’t refer to technical knowledge or skill in operation. It refers to philosophical and theoretical educational concepts. In addition, it involves broader education, and its purpose is long-term development.

No matter the size of your church or your protector team, training is vital to the success of your team. A successful safety and security ministry leads to a safer church and a safer church is a more welcoming church which promotes butts in the seats. 

While getting “butts in seats” is definitely a good thing, it starts with having a qualified, quality team of protectors and that starts through training. Training is necessary for improving the quality of work of your church protectors. New and inexperienced team members sometimes require detailed instructions for the effective performance of the job. In the church protector role, our volunteers don’t need to just work, they must work effectively with minimum supervision in a lot of instances. 

A well-planned and well-executed training program reduces objective reaction and promotes subjective response. A good training program allows for preprogramming in the mind to promote an appropriate response in the absence of orders. A trained and programmed brain can reduce delay in reaction to crisis. It’s been said: “the body can’t go where the brain hasn’t be taken first” – that means that we must train our protectors how to respond in their mind before we can ever expect their bodies to perform. Whether it’s Band-Aids or bullets, the church protector must be trained for proper response to avoid confusion, denial or delay, the result of which may be death. Death for others, the people they are to protect or the death of themselves.

There are several other benefits to a trained church protector. Training reduces learning time, it ensures quality performance of duties and it helps to improve morale by ensuring that all team members know their expectations and how they connect to every position on the team so everyone shares in success. 

In most organizations the HR department is responsible for formulating the Training Policy so how should we perform this task in our church safety and security ministry?  The team leader of the church protector team must take on this responsibility. To start formulating the policy and to decide what, when and who will be trained, you must ask yourself the below-mentioned questions in formulating the training policy:

  • What is the task or event you wish to prepare for?
  • Is the training solution you are considering “adequate to the task” you are asking to be performed?
  • What do I want and hope to accomplish through training?
  • Who is responsible for the training function?
  • Should the training be formal or informal?
  • What are the training priorities?
  • What type of training is required in my industry? Or, what does “good” look like?
  • When and where I must give the training?
  • Should training be continuous or casual?
  • What is the budget for training? 
  • What type of training does our insurance company support? 

In addition to those mentioned above there are oftentimes legal requirements that you must meet when providing training. As much as you may not think it, when you start to train your protectors you become more liable for the outcomes of their performance. Trained protectors lower the risk of the church but if the standards of training aren’t met, and an event isn’t handled properly due to the poor training or untrained protector, the church may be liable for the outcome. 

It’s no secret that untrained or poorly trained protectors can cause your church to lose customers – after all we are in a customer service business so why shouldn’t we have the best customer service possible, right? That is the worst-case scenario, but it can happen.

Additionally, quality, qualified training programs cost money, those costs have an easily measured up-front cost of time and money. Those line items are tangible and difficult to handle on a tight budget. However, added costs of poorly trained protector teams show the importance of training team members. These costs do not come in the form of line items, they’re intangible and so they are often ignored. Having a trained protector team means your team members are learning new skills that can improve customer service, reduce liability, reduce incidents, build confidence in the team, and create a more welcoming environment. An investment in your church protector team’s skill sets is an investment in your ministry and your church. When one of us gets better, we all get better.

Check out our membership program where you receive discounts on in-person and online trainings, as well as, receive access to training material, videos, and the Protector's Toolkit Protector Plans (training topics, slide presentations, and notes) for you to use to train your team monthly or quarterly. 

A trained and programmed brain can reduce delay in reaction to crisis - Guy Beveridge

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