by Thom Schultz
I can usually spot a dysfunctional church staff from a mile off. Certain little indicators tell the story.
Conversely, other telltale signs generally telegraph a healthy staff, one that operates smoothly, accomplishes a lot, exudes a sense of team, has fun, and enjoys a powerful ministry.
Here’s how to spot a healthy, effective, loving staff.
- Weekly staff meetings. The entire staff—whether it’s two or 200—gathers weekly for 30 or 60 minutes to connect. The agenda provides time for informational updates, brief training tips, affirmation for one another, sharing of personal updates and needs, and time for authentic prayer.
- Weekly work check-ins. Each staff member has a brief, regularly scheduled time to check in with his or her supervisor to go over the past week’s and the upcoming week’s objectives.
- Shared stories. The staff tells and celebrates the good things God is accomplishing through the various ministries of the church. Every week, all the time.
- First names. The staff members refer to one another by first names. No tightly-knit team refers to one another as Mr., Miss, Pastor, Reverend, or (God forbid) Doctor. Collegiality is more important than forced “respect.”
- Direct communication. Staff members with concerns go directly to those who can do something about them. No whining with other staff or members.
- Open parking. No special parking places (or other symbols of puffed-up privilege) for “VIP” staff.
- Laughter. The frequent sound of wholesome laughter permeates a staff that enjoys one another—and the joy of serving God together.
A healthy staff precedes a healthy ministry. And conversely, an unhealthy staff cannot produce a healthy, effective ministry.
So, how many telltale signs does your church exhibit?