Skip to main content

One Suggestion to Lower Stress in the Hiring Process

There is so much stress involved in hiring the right person for a team. It would be difficult for our team to call me a micro-manager. Delegation is one of my personal values, but knowing how important it is to add the right people to our team, this has always been one of the few areas I have such a strong voice in how it’s done and who joins our team. In our current context, I have spoken into the hiring process from an executive pastor to a someone on our facilities team.

Over the years, I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but I’ve also managed – in the business world and the church world – to develop some pretty healthy teams.

There is one secret I have learned, however, that while it doesn’t necessarily keep you from hiring the wrong person, it can take some of the stress out of the process. And, hopefully help you have a healthier team and happier and more effective team members.

I have done this with great success in hiring several staff positions for several teams. And, it’s simple.

Build the job description around the person.

Set an overall vision for what you’re trying to achieve. Hire the best person you can find for the position. (Go for character, competency, culture and chemistry.) Then build the job description, with the person’s help, around the person you hire.

If they excel in administrative tasks then the job description may have more administrative tasks.

If they excel in creative tasks then the job description may have more inventive tasks.

Find people you believe can help shape a healthy team. Add people to the team you trust. Then let them help you define exactly how they will do the job. And, this is true whether they are paid or volunteer.

This approach allows you to hire for experience and fit with the team. But, this approach doesn’t limit you to finding an exact replica of a clearly defined, narrowly focused job description.

If you’re hiring a small groups pastor, for example, certainly look for someone who loves small group ministry. Make sure they love Jesus, share the same general beliefs of the church, etc., but don’t dictate how they will grow, develop, and lead the small group ministry.

Here’s the deal. I ultimately want a strong team. I want people who share an overall vision with me. But, I don’t want to script how they accomplish their specific part of the vision.

This way of hiring allows me to be a leader instead of a manager. It frees people to be leaders instead of employees. It helps us achieve more than a rigid structured environment ever could.

And, I best of all it makes for a much happier team.

Find the right people and you can build the right team.

Related Posts

Ron Edmondson

Author Ron Edmondson

More posts by Ron Edmondson

Join the discussion 6 Comments

  • MYOB Class says:

    It’s best to present a well-structured vision of your career so far from your first path point and not what looks like random content scattered across the vast canvas.thank you.

  • I agree with you about building the job description around the person and the unique strengths and abilities they bring to the table. But be sure you know the kind of person you need in this position. If the person is highly relational and the job is largely administrative, there's only so much you can do to make the position fit the person. Unless of course, you really want that person, and then you are willing to move other people around to make that person fit.

  • kmac4him

    You don't want to have to micromanage someone. Is this person adventurous, how will they chart a course in an unpioneered God Adventure? Look for the level of their initiative. Have they started new things? Did they carry a new project all the way through from: I will do this-I am doing this-watch me do this-come do this with me-I will watch you do this-you do this. Who is in their life circle? Is it balanced with followers and servant leaders? Do they have a humble attitude toward to volunteers, and what would be their Discipleship-Accountabily priorities that would keep the servant leadership in a vital-vertical relationship with God. Look for indications that they will put God's people and their needs first, before the promotion of ministry projects. Ask yourself this: What was the degree of their "nostalgia" of things they accomplished in the past? Was it more than their excitement and vision for what God is doing Now?