Ten Ways to Be a Better Pastor: Church Staff Perspective

In my Monday post, I looked at the issue of pastor/staff relationships from the perspective of the lead pastor or senior pastor. In this article we hear from the staff perspective, those other than the senior pastor who serve on a church staff.

Like my post from the pastors' perspective, this post from the staff perspective is written in the form of a top ten. The ranking is related to frequency to which I have heard these concerns. My prayer is that both lists will be viewed positively, and that all who serve our churches vocationally will receive them well.

1. Have good and open communication. This issue was a strong number one. There was a significant gap between one and two. The communication issue is primarily related to communication with staff, but it also refers to communication with the entire congregation.
2. Keep consistent vision/priorities. Stick with a major focus long enough to see it through before moving on to the next big vision.
3. Work on personality chemistry with staff. Interestingly, this comment was number three on both lists.
4. Empower the staff. Make certain that, when assigning responsibilities to staff, you empower them as well.
5. Execute. Get the task done that you stated you would accomplish.
6. Be a good listener. Staff meetings and one-on-one conversations need to be give and take, not dominated by one party. Make certain you are listening carefully when the staff speaks
7. Be loyal. As is the case with pastors, the church staff persons do not expect blind loyalty, but they do want to know the pastor has their back.
8. Exercise spiritual leadership with the staff. While the pastor may do a good job of leading the congregation spiritually, make certain that he does the same for the staff.
9. Lead strongly but not autocratically. This issue does not seem nearly as pervasive as it was a few years ago.
10. Keep good relationships with other staff and church members. Unity on staff and unity in the church are critical; the pastor sets the key example for this unity.

Dr. Thom Rainer is president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.

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