In the last several entries, I have been addressing the matter of hiring new key staff members. If you have followed along, you will have read about common pitfalls and the importance of self-assessment before actively searching for your new team member. In this post, I will look at the steps of the search process itself.
The search process should not be rushed. You will need a trusted and dedicated search committee who have been selected and trained carefully. A thoughtful, well guided search process can sometimes take up to a year, so patience and a group that works well together are essential! Also, bringing in an outside consultant is a wise decision, especially when you want to conduct thorough behavioral interviews. Every search process will be different based on who you are looking for, but there are three steps that should always be present: promoting, screening and behavioral interviews.Every search process will be different based on who you are looking for, but there are three steps that should always be present: promoting, screening and behavioral interviews. Click To Tweet
Step One: Promoting
This begins with a thoughtful and accurate position description. Make sure your description is honest! It is tempting to gloss over you faults as a church, and promote yourself as what you want to be, rather than what you are. Promoting a position that isn’t actually what you are looking for will attract the wrong candidates and end up causing you more time, effort and money. Once you have the description ready, you can circulate the job posting through your larger community.Promoting a position that isn’t actually what you are looking for will attract the wrong candidates and end up causing you more time, effort and money. Click To Tweet
Step Two: Screening
After you have cast a wide net by promoting the position, you should be able to round up a significant number of candidates. If you have an insufficient number of candidates it will be difficult to compare the data. Once you have found your candidates, then you can begin the initial screening. The point of this step is to narrow down the list to your top three candidates.
Think of these five C’s as you screen the candidates:
Compatibility: The candidates need to be theologically compatible with your church and hold similar values.
Character: Their character should be a good fit for your church and the candidates should have trustworthy recommendations to back them up.
Competencies: Review the qualities and competencies from the job description… do these candidates check these boxes?
Context: they need to be compatible with your specific church (for example, a pastor who has spent his entire life in rural Wyoming might not be a good culture match for an urban church, and vice-versa)
Chemistry: Do they work well with your staff? Do you like them?
After an initial screening, and discussion with the search committee, it is time to choose the top three candidates.
Step three: Behavioral Interviews
Once you have narrowed your candidates down to three; you can begin the behavioral interview. The behavioral interview differs from a screening interview in that it delves much, much deeper. A normal behavioral interview takes around four hours for each candidate. At this point, if you haven’t already been working with a consultant, it’s recommended to bring in an expert. It is well worth the money to invest in a trained professional to do a behavioral interview at the very least.
The goal of this step is to be able to establish a pattern of behavior. Behavioral interviews avoid hypothetical questioning. These don’t give any real data because anyone who’s interviewed before can come up with a good answer. It’s better to be specific, and to ask them about multiple situations, so you can begin to understand how they will react in any hypothetical scenario. Data from the interviews will then be used to create reports that weigh each candidate’s personal assets and liabilities to allow you to effectively compare each candidate.It is well worth the money to invest in a trained professional to do a behavioral interview. Click To Tweet
Completing the steps leads to clarity
Once all three steps are complete, if you take to time to be mindful and honest, the right choice should rise to the top. After a lot of prayer and discussion, the search committee should be able to make a wise choice, and you should be left with a person you are confident will be the right fit for your church team.
The Art of Hiring Wisely- NEW! This FREE resource outlines pitfalls in the hiring process as well as lays out tried and true steps and principles to aid you in making the best possible hire. Whether you are anticipating the need to add to your church staff or are walking through an unexpected change in leadership, The Art of Hiring Wisely will help you move forward with confidence. Available for immediate download HERE.
Change Management– Hiring well is an important and essential factor in bringing on new church staff–but it’s not the only one. It is also essential to guide your staff and community through the transition, which takes skill. To assess and grow your skills in leading change, we recommend the Change Management Effectiveness Profile and the Change Management Skills Builder. If you are a coach, the Managing Change Coaching Guide with Storyboard is a powerful tool to help you walk alongside your clients as they navigate leading major change.
Coaching and Consulting– Logan Leadership is currently accepting new clients! Contact us for a FREE 30-minute conversation with Bob Logan to explore how Logan Leadership can help your church move forward.