Ministry Blunders: People Management
Notes from WCA’s Defining Moments: My Biggest Ministry Blunders
Mark is an encourager by nature, so when he planted his church he would hire people that he believed he could empower and train to succeed.
It turned out that they were unfulfilled and unable to do the job, but he felt he couldn’t let them go after telling them that he could help them succeed when he hired them. He didn’t have metrics or clear goals for them to measure their success which only made it more difficult to handle.
He didn’t have other people helping him in the hiring process, and so he made many hiring mistakes, causing many people to ultimately get hurt. He didn’t realise how bad it was until he saw how many people were getting hurt. He had to have very difficult conversations with people and let them go after he’d told them he was going to help them. He realised that he needed to put clear goals and metrics in place so people would know if they were winning in their job or not.
The Value of having clear metrics
At Willow, there is an A-B-C grading system that keeps everyone clear about how they are doing and places where they are excelling as well as places where they could improve. This keeps people from being surprised if they are let go, because they have already had fair warning that things need to change or there may be a need to take some action. Mark now makes sure there are no surprises. He interviews and hires everyone using a team, not by himself. They have created clear goals, have defined success, and communicate it clearly to all staff. He has realized that releasing people from a position where they are not succeeding can be the most compassionate move, rather than abandoning them relationally.