Often, I talk with ministry leaders and senior pastors who have a burning passion inside them to accomplish an extraordinary vision, but express frustration with the progress they have made. I believe one of the significant factors to having a successful ministry and fulfilling a great vision is having a GREAT TEAM. This is the group of people who you will labor with to fulfill God’s purpose for your church or ministry, so it’s important to have the right team. It starts by picking great individuals.
If there are current members on your team who don’t possess these qualities, immediately address it because they are impacting your ministry’s success.
Here are five key qualities that you should look for:
- Passion for your church or ministry
You want to find people who believe in what you are doing and want to be a part of it. Often my ministry staff came from people within my church who served with no pay or incentives. They generously invested in the vision of the ministry with their time, talents, and treasure. Their passion was clearly seen and proven, therefore, perfect potential candidates to add to my team.
However, if you are interviewing someone outside of your church or ministry, do your due diligence through the interview process. I often ask potential candidates, “Why do you want to work here?” Usually the candidate is well-qualified and could work almost anywhere, but this question gives the candidate an opportunity to convince me why they want to work specifically with us. This question helps determine how well the candidate knows your organization and assesses if the person is just looking for a job or if the candidate really wants to be a part of your team.
- Good people skills
Ministry is all about people! Regardless of the type of job a person does, they will have to interact with other people at some point in time. A person who understands and applies good people skills will always be a better employee than an equally qualified person who lacks people skills.
I’ve made the mistake in the past of hiring the right person for a position, but not for the team. Don’t look at the new hire as just filling a position, but how well this person will interact with others on your team as well. You must always remember that every person you add, no matter what the position it is, is part of an integrated, interdependent team that relies on each other. The team must collaborate and communicate well in order to get the job done effectively.
- Commitment to self-improvement and self-development
A great employee doesn’t rely on the organization to provide them with the necessary education. They are already committed to educating and improving themselves. They are constantly assessing their own results and looking for ways to better those results in the future. What books are they reading? What conferences or online webinars are they attending?
Technology and our culture changes rapidly these days. As an agency, our team must stay informed with trends and how to break through the noise of our busy world in order to inspire response. The same applies to those working in the ministry. You must know the best methods to reach and engage people.
You shouldn’t have to hire a millennial to bring in the newest technologies and processes into your organization. Your current team should be committed to learning, adapting, and adopting creative ways to engage and influence today’s culture.
- Invites and embraces accountability
What is accountability? Often it has a negative connotation in people’s minds. You hear it when something has gone wrong, “Who will be held accountable for this?”
Webster’s Dictionary defines accountability as “the quality or state of being accountable; an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility for one’s actions.”
I like how Henry J. Evans defines accountability in his book, Winning with Accountability: The Secret Language of High-Performing Organizations. He says accountability is “clear commitments that — in the eyes of others — have been kept.”
Henry J. Evans continues to explain that “people deal with us based on what they think about us, not what we think they should think about us. So, when we make a commitment, we have to fulfill that commitment in the eyes of others. It is not good enough to fulfill the commitment in our eyes – we have to fulfill the commitment in the eyes of others. That is the tricky part.
When we’re accountable, it is necessary for us to go to our customers, our suppliers, the people we work for – and yes, the people who work with us – and ask them, “How am I doing?” We allow them to hold us accountable – in their eyes – for our commitments.
It is crucial that every member of your team embraces and practices accountability. Performance shoots up, job satisfaction increases, and results improve!
- Respect for Leadership
If you just watch the news for a few minutes or scan through your social media feed, you probably have noticed the increase of disrespect in today’s culture. Respecting your boss doesn’t mean you always agree with him/her, but how you express your disagreement is what matters. Complaining to others in the organization shows a lack of respect. Would you want your boss to complain to your co-workers about you? Absolutely not!
The right thing to do is to go directly to your boss and privately share the concerns you have. I am a firm believer in direct communication in all relationships — with your spouse, your boss, your friends, etc. Direct communication does not have to be harsh or mean, but it should be conveyed respectfully, honestly, and with an attitude of humility. This style of communication demonstrates respect to another person. This is why murmuring, complaining to others, and gossip are so destructive because it is so disrespectful to others.
An employee who does not have respect for the boss should become an ex-employee as soon as possible. It is the boss’s responsibility to develop and apply the characteristics of a good leader and it is the employee’s responsibility to be a loyal follower of that leader.
Infinity Concepts provides employment testing, staff training, and leadership development.
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