Hire To Your Weaknesses

One of the greatest lessons anyone has taught me about leadership is that it's counter-productive to spin your wheels trying to be something you aren't.

On a scale of 1-10, I am by nature probably a 4 or a 5 when it comes to administrating and managing people. I might be able to do the work of a 5 or a 6, but it will take me an inordinate amount of time and energy. I'll never ever be an 8 or 9 or 10.

On the other hand, I feel like I'm probably a 7 or 8 when it comes to communicating and applying Truth in large groups and one-on-one settings. When I spend my time trying to improve in that area, sometimes I can do it at a really high level.

So, as I have the luxury of hiring people, I'm always looking to hire people who can round me out. I need people who can administrate at a really high level so I can delegate that to them. That way, the organization benefits from a unified leadership that is well-rounded so long as the leadership stays aligned.

Admittedly, that luxury is simplified in a larger church with the resources to hire several staff positions. However, I'm convinced if I was a pastor at a small church I would follow the same philosophy. For most senior pastors at small churches, the first full or part-time hire is a worship leader. For most pastors, that may be a mistake. There are people within congregations of almost any size who could lead music at a level appropriate for the size of the church. If you're like me: primarily a preacher and less of an administrator, why not hire someone first who can help you lead and manage the volunteers you'll need? Otherwise, you're likely to run-off your newly hired worship leader anyway...

No matter the size of your church, your most important and pressing hires are directly related to your most glaring weaknesses as a leader. Resist the urge to make the "traditional" hire just because it's traditional. That's a great way to find yourself out of a job.


chloeadele said...

There is a church up here that I would attend weekly because of the pastor. But he is probably a 1-2 on admin stuff, and it shows. There's no one on his staff to take on that role, and he spends a good deal more time than he'd like to just making sure the extreme basics are attended to. That church would be so much better if someone else could take on the majority of those decisions so that he could be freed up to spend more time communicating and being there for his congregation. It's a shame.