5 Reasons Why They Aren’t Coming Back


Ever leader thinks that they have a great small group. And some of them wonder why people won’t come back after they visit for the first time. There are a million reasons why some people try out a group it doesn’t work, but here are 5 possible reasons that they may be fleeing for their lives:

1. Most of the group has been together for awhile and it’s hard to see a place to fit in.

This is why it is so important to start new groups instead of trying to shoehorn new people into existing groups. It’s kind of like when your parents moved when you were in the 10th grade and you had to show up to a new school to try to fit in. Unless you’re Ferris Bueller, it’s going to be a rough year.

2. There is no time invested in community.

I know that you have the group that loves to “go deep”. Last week’s discussion about whether Regeneration begins before salvation was probably riveting stuff, but if you’re not committing group time to developing lasting relationships, you’re missing the big picture of discipleship.

3. There is no time invested in study.

Community is important, but when the study is an afterthought, you basically have a social club. There has to be a balance between the two.

4. The leader dominates the discussion.

I know a group where the “study” consisted of the leader acting out a scene from The Matrix each week. That may be a bit extreme, but a lot of leaders feel like they need to be the center of the show and have all of the answers. We tell our leaders that if they are talking more than 30% of the time, there is a problem. Awkward silence can be your friend.

5. The leader is unprepared. 

I once asked someone to lead the discussion at our group and they started the night by asking their wife to run and print out the message questions because they hadn’t seen them yet. A leader who is not prepared shows that they don’t really care about the group. It doesn’t have to be 2 hours of prep, but at least know where the finish line is for the night.


About Chris Surratt

Chris Surratt is a ministry consultant and coach with over twenty-three years of experience serving the local church. Chris served on the Executive Teams at Cross Point Church in Nashville, Tennessee, and Seacoast Church in Charleston, South Carolina. He is also the Discipleship and Small Group Specialist for LifeWay Christian Resources. Chris's first book, Small Groups For The Rest Of Us: How to Design Your Small Groups System to Reach the Fringes, was just released by Thomas Nelson.

Posted on April 16, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. These reminders will help enhance my groups this week – thanks!

  1. Pingback: Top 5 Posts In April | ChrisSurratt.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: