Beliefnet
Elevating Excellence

From the very beginning you should start building your team—even before you can afford a team.

So what should you do?

When there aren’t sufficient resources to fund employees, work your contacts within and outside of the organization to find people who can support you on a volunteer basis. Put together a board of quality individuals—people who have experience and contacts you don’t yet possess. Network and identify mentors, both from the ministry as well as the business worlds, to help guide and point you in the right direction. Think in terms of people who can’t only help you now but into the future as well. Then, as the church begins to grow and income becomes sufficient, these same relationships can help you in the process of building out a paid staff.

Once you are ready, the question is who do you hire? What skill sets do you need? What types of personalities work? There are a myriad of questions to be answered.

As a beginning point, my view is that the pastor needs to think in terms of building two separate teams. One team is the ministry team. Most pastors are really good at this side of the equation, so I will direct my comments toward the other team that the pastor needs to build— the team that manages the day-to-day business affairs of the church.

While we live today in an exciting era filled with mega-churches and often-rapid growth, the reality is that very few ministers have any training, expertise, or inclination in the areas of leadership, management, and business skills. At the same time, any growing, successful ministry now has needs and challenges ranging from human resources to real estate to IRS compliance to governmental relations to finance. It is in dealing with the demands and complexities of this world where most pastors fall short, and for good reason. The ability to effectively preach and manage a large business organization rarely comes in the same package (in fact, I work for the only person I have ever met who can do both).

The need then becomes pretty clear. As the organization that is the church grows, the pastor needs to put in place a team with the talent, experience, and expertise required to manage that organization.

From the very beginning you should start building your team—even before you can afford a team.

So what should you do?

When there aren’t sufficient resources to fund employees, work your contacts within and outside of the organization to find people who can support you on a volunteer basis. Put together a board of quality individuals—people who have experience and contacts you don’t yet possess. Network and identify mentors, both from the ministry as well as the business worlds, to help guide and point you in the right direction. Think in terms of people who can’t only help you now but into the future as well. Then, as the church begins to grow and income becomes sufficient, these same relationships can help you in the process of building out a paid staff.

Once you are ready, the question is who do you hire? What skill sets do you need? What types of personalities work? There are a myriad of questions to be answered.

As a beginning point, my view is that the pastor needs to think in terms of building two separate teams. One team is the ministry team. Most pastors are really good at this side of the equation, so I will direct my comments toward the other team that the pastor needs to build— the team that manages the day-to-day business affairs of the church.

While we live today in an exciting era filled with mega-churches and often-rapid growth, the reality is that very few ministers have any training, expertise, or inclination in the areas of leadership, management, and business skills. At the same time, any growing, successful ministry now has needs and challenges ranging from human resources to real estate to IRS compliance to governmental relations to finance. It is in dealing with the demands and complexities of this world where most pastors fall short, and for good reason. The ability to effectively preach and manage a large business organization rarely comes in the same package (in fact, I work for the only person I have ever met who can do both).

The need then becomes pretty clear. As the organization that is the church grows, the pastor needs to put in place a team with the talent, experience, and expertise required to manage that organization.

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