What type of Worship Leader are You?

March 31, 2008

As I prepare to teach on Worship in a few weeks at INSIDE OUT, our Senior High Youth Group at St. Simons Community Church, I picked back up Greg Scheer’s wonderful book “The Art of Worship”. Towards the book’s end he talks about a few of the different ‘styles’ of worship leading – or ‘worship leader personality types’, if you will.

the CONDUCTOR – Leading the congregation almost like a choir, even beating the tempo through songs – often going hand in hand with churches which use primarily hymns during their corporate worship times.

the CHEERLEADER – Great at pumping up the energy of the congregation, a born encourager with an upbeat demeanor, often associated with celebratory praise style of corporate worship.

the ENTERTAINER – Most ‘popular’ worship leaders, like those in the CCM market: a ‘winsome lead-worshiper’ who can encourage those in the pews to follow their example.  These are often skilled vocalists or musicians, and would probably do just as well fronting a rock-band in a club as they would leading worship on Sunday Morning, and some even do both.

the ENLIVENER – Not necessarily the most skilled musician or vocalist in his or her congregation, but is quite effective at drawing others in to participate.  These are most common in ‘communal cultures’, particularly Africa & South America, but there are good examples of them here in the states as well.

Of course, an individual’s spiritual gifts will add other layers to any of these categories (for instance, one of my more prominent spiritual gifts is preaching/teaching, so though I am mostly ‘the ENTERTAINER’ with a little bit of ‘the CHEERLEADER’ mixed in, my preaching/teaching gift makes that look much different from someone else who may fit in the same styles, but have other primary spiritual giftings).

So, I’m just wondering – what type of worship leader are YOU?!


11 Responses to “What type of Worship Leader are You?”

  1. mjdaniel said


    I’m going with a combination of cheerleader, enlivener, and maybe a little conductor (I move a lot when I lead – bands I’ve worked with have always said they can read my body movement to know where I was going next).

  2. Billy Chia said

    Based on these categories I’d call myself a Cheerleader/Entertainer on a 60/40 spilt.

    Although obviously there’s are large gaps in the categories.

  3. saintlewis said

    Oh yeah – HUGE gaps. In fact, I’m tempted to invent a few more categories, myself! But it’s all for fun, and your answers cracked me up – “60/40 spit”? Glad we’re clear on that!

  4. createdtopraise said

    Entertainer/Cheerleader. Not sure if that’s my natural leadership style or if it comes from my years as a secular performer. Probably a little of both.

  5. Ryan said

    Hmm..I think we need to come up with some more categories 🙂 As far as these go, I’d probably fall into the ‘entertainer’ category. I think there should be one called, ‘encourager’ – I would probably fall under that one.

  6. I’d rather ask you what type of leader *I AM* … and no, you won’t lose your job, haha.

  7. BTW – I’ll go first. If I have to ONLY choose ONE of the 4 above, I’d choose “ENTERTAINER” for you …. and that’s NOT meant to be an insult. 🙂

    Would you agree?

  8. Amanda said

    Conductor, mainly related to the description — leading mainly hymns & praise choruses as I do in our traditional service, but I have some of & am striving for more of the Cheerleader & Enlivener when it fits there.

    If I’m playing flute & singing ‘backup’ with our contemporary service, I’m more of the Entertainer (flute) & Cheerleader (singing).

    They need more categories. 😀

  9. saintlewis said

    Honestly, Fred, I thought about this before even posting – I’d place you in the ‘Entertainer’ category as well, though the way we express that looks quite a bit different…I also see a lot of the ‘Conductor’ in you, because of how strong you are at directing musicians and vocalists, even in the midst of a service.

    Definitely need more categories… I feel another post coming on. 😉

  10. Hey,
    Thanks, I’ll take that … I sometimes think of myself more as the “Enlivener” … definitely not the most skilled vocalist (if anything, maybe the least skilled vocalist), yet try to engage and bring people in through the authenticity.

  11. Ha! I think you’re piano playing keeps you FAR from the ‘enlivener’ category, and your voice works, even if it won’t win you 1st place on American Idol! Besides, one viewing of the WUTZ dvd and I think it’s CLEAR which one you are!

    I only thought of ONE ‘enlivener’, and I won’t mention his name, but his initials are J.D., and he’s my neighbor, and though he’s not musical, to watch him stir up a bunch of kids during worship is AWESOME.

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