If you’ve never heard the concept of a weekly family staff meeting, this may sound weird. It sounds less weird if you take the word “staff” out, but that’s just there to define what it is: a meeting with all of your family’s staff, or, family members.
I’m not referring to the 1800s when it was common for a family to actually have staff members working in the home. This isn’t a post about slavery.
It’s actually quite a simple, and important, concept.
What’s a Family Staff Meeting?
A family staff meeting is exactly what it sounds like.
You get together, once a week to discuss family stuff. We’ll talk about the specifics in a moment, but I’m sure you can figure out what family stuff is.
Don’t feel like this is a chore. If you make it seem like one, your kids will dread it each week, and you’ll ruin a great thing. It should be a pleasurable experience… and a helpful one!
Why Should You Do One?
Getting a family on the same page is important. This is especially true for larger families, and older children. If you start this when they’re young, it will be easy to continue into adulthood.
It’s a big part of scheduling your family time wisely.
You don’t need to set aside an hour or two, and reserve a conference room. Just find an easy place to do it each week, for as long as you need — it usually takes less than 30 minutes.
We actually do ours on the way to church. It’s a 30-minute drive, and if we have unfinished business during the first discussion, we have another 30 minutes home.
The kids enjoy it, because they can bring up whatever they want, and everyone feels like they’re heard. That’s actual feedback we’ve got from our kids.
Executing a Family Staff Meeting
Similar to a business staff meeting, you’ll discuss recent and future goings-on.
Here are some things you may want to talk about:
- Previous Week – Talk about what went well, what didn’t, what everyone could change, what they could keep doing. Anything great or terrible that happened.
- Upcoming Week – Discuss the plan for the week ahead. Kids like to be in the know. They want to know the plans for the week, and they’ll feel secure in knowing what’s going to happen.
- Upcoming Big Events – If you have a major change or a big event coming up, such as a move or a vacation, see how your kids are feeling about it. Answer any questions they may have.
- Recent Memories – If you recently went on vacation or did something special, ask your kids how they felt about it, and what they remember. Reminisce.
- Current Learning – Ask your kids what they’re learning about, and tell them what you’re learning about. It could be school, personal reading, or just life.
- Teach a Lesson – Give a small lesson on an important topic. It doesn’t have to sound like a lesson. Maybe a short parable, a story, or some Scripture. Have them pull the lesson out of it and explain it to you.
- Current Events – If there is anything big going on in the world, and your kids know about it, see how they feel about it and what they know. Consider telling older children about major current events to keep them informed and help them analyze the situation. Don’t indoctrinate them in your personal political beliefs. You can share yours, but help them build their own.
- Ask Questions – This may be the most important part. Come up with a few questions to ask your kids. Listen to their answers, but also see how they respond. These should be questions that help them think critically.
That’s it. You can add or subtract what you like.
I do suggest predetermining when and where you will hold the meeting. Will it be at home? In the car? Over lunch after church? Decide beforehand, and you’ll be more likely to stick with it.
Our kids look forward to this meeting. They don’t see it as a chore. They see it as a time for our family to connect and get on the same page. Make it fun and light. Don’t make it a burden.
This isn’t some actual, hard-scheduled, business staff meeting. It’s a simple family conversation. If you do it at least once a week, you may be surprised at how much one simple addition can change your family’s life.