I get to meet and talk with worship leaders often. I’m so grateful for the community, fellowship, and many times, vulnerability that comes as we share about our teams and experiences.

As we share both the joys and challenges of being worship leaders, there’s one theme I consistently observe: the honesty with which these worship leaders share in our conversations doesn’t transfer when they’re talking to their teams.

Issues are going to arise on your team that require you to step up to the plate. The question is, do you deal with the challenges? Or do you retreat and hope that they’ll just work themselves out? Click To Tweet

Often, worship leaders share about a specific challenge they’re having with a member of their team or even their pastor, so I ask clarifying questions to try to get to the root of the problem.

Time and time again, I find that when pressed, the leaders admit that they haven’t actually taken the necessary step to directly confront the conflict or encourage the person in question.

Here are some of the things I’ve heard:

– My drummer just isn’t good; he can’t stick with the click and I don’t know what to do. I’m stuck with him.

– The other band members are really frustrated with the drummer and they’re talking to me about how they might leave the team unless I do something about it.

– Members of my band consistently show up unprepared and disregard the work I asked them to do in advance.

– This person consistently shows up late and it’s really frustrating.

– I’m having to make excuses to the rest of my team for that singer who’s always late.

– I’m having to make excuses to the rest of my singers who are complaining about that one singer’s pitch issues.

– I don’t think my pastor values worship and I feel deflated as a leader.

You may be in a few of these exact situations right now.

First of all, many of these things can be avoided (see my posts on How to Hold Auditions for Your Team, and How to lead a Vision and Values Night).

Secondly, no matter how good of a leader you are, or how thorough your audition process, challenges are going to arise on your team because you’re human and you’re leading humans.

Issues are going to arise on your team that require you to step up to the plate. The question is, do you deal with the challenges head on? Or do you retreat and hope that they’ll just work themselves out?

Good leaders don’t have a certain gift mix or personality type. Good leaders learn what their strengths and weaknesses are and consistently work on getting better. Click To Tweet

I’ve seen so many worship team members get wounded because their worship leader refused to have honest and open conversations with them. Or worship leaders think they have communicated clearly and assume the team members understand, when in reality, they never really stated the facts and just danced around the issue.

I used to really struggle with being this way as a leader. Honestly, I’d struggle to even make eye contact with someone on my team who I didn’t want to have a conversation with or deal with. But that approach ended up doing way more damage than if I had just sat down and had an honest conversation.

Do you struggle with being passive when it comes to confronting your team? Are you afraid of being the bad guy? Is your passivity and resistance to conflict hurting your team? Click To Tweet

Good leaders don’t have a certain gift mix or personality type. Good leaders learn what their strengths are and pinpoint their weaknesses and consistently work on getting better.

No matter what you may think of yourself as a leader today, I promise that if you’re willing, humble, and committed to put in the work, you can grow as a leader.

Do you struggle with being passive when it comes to confronting your team? Are you afraid of being the bad guy? Is your passivity and resistance to conflict hurting your worship team?

What’s one issue or challenge on your team that you can commit to facing head on this week?

Huge thanks to my friend Jordan Vanderplate for letting me use this photo from Harry S. Truman Reservoir in Clinton, Missouri. Check out his work here.


I’m Justin Rizzo. I’m a worship leader, songwriter, and recording artist. I want to help you achieve your highest potential and walk out with confidence everything you’ve been made for.









4 comments

  1. Dan williams

    There is much wisdom contained in your blogs Justin.
    Practical, prophetic and powerful. Thank you for sharing these insights.

  2. Thank you so much. Yes, I have trouble and have been passive…terrified of dealing with these situations. I end up getting angry before motivated to deal with it. God has diligently been working with me on this very subject in every area of my life. Great timing…thanks.

    1. Justin Rizzo

      Thanks so much for sharing, Anne. Definitely been there before and it’s still a struggle at times. W’re on the journey together!