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The Role of a 4-H Leader

What do 4-H’ers expect from their club leaders?

A 4-H member would like a leader with the following qualities:

  • set a good example;
  • be patient;
  • be a creative teacher or locate someone who can help with a project;
  • be understanding and earn the respect of the members;
  • have a good sense of humour, teach on the members level;
  • be easy for the member to talk to and a good listener;
  • give constructive criticism and praise when necessary without comparing to other members,
  • divides the work equally between all members. Most of all, they are interested in children and their development as knowledgeable and caring citizens.

Clubs have found that it is best if the leadership role is shared, and it is easier to recruit leaders if their jobs are defined.

These are the main leadership roles:

General Leader

This person is responsible for the general organization and administration of the club. This does not mean that general leaders do all these jobs; it means that they are responsible for seeing that they are done. Most clubs have found that the general leader’s job is full enough without having to teach a project as well. The job of the general leader includes:

  1. Organization, including:
    • getting the club started at the beginning of the club year;
    • ensuring there are sufficient leaders and that they attend training meetings;
    • club registration and ordering and distribution of project material;
    • election of club officers and helping them carry out their jobs.
  2. Administration, includes:
    • keeping files for the club, secretary’s books, filing and mail;
    • keeping other leaders informed of club activities when required;
    • ensuring member and leader forms are filled in and they are aware of opportunities available to them.
  3. Club meetings / activities, including:
    • overseeing program planning;
    • working with committees to carry out the club meetings and activities;
    • overseeing Achievement Day planning.
  4. Evaluation, including:
    • ensuring the club evaluates the progress it has made from time to time.

Project Leaders

The job of the project leader is to teach a project to a group of members. There should be at least one project leader for each project that the club is offering.

Assistant Leaders

Many general club leaders have found that one or more assistant leaders are a great help. An assistant leader may take over some of the jobs listed under the general leader. Project leaders may use an assistant, particularly for a large project group.