You had the best intentions. You sought the best candidates for the role. You called the right people together to make “the call.” You prayed about it. You checked references and did all the things you should do to hire the right person to fill the right seat on the bus.

Only to realize, right person, wrong bus. And it’s never going to be the right bus. So what do you do after you part ways? Many church teams struggle to find the next best steps to take after a hiring or call decision has gone bad. This can be a time filled with emotion.

Here are a few things to consider:

  • As the senior leader don’t beat yourself, your team, or your leaders up over this. Sometimes, it just doesn’t work out. Even with the best of intentions and every effort to find the right match for the team, sometimes, it just doesn’t work.
  • As the senior leader don’t let anyone else beat you, your team, or other leaders up over this. This is a great time for grace and mercy to be modeled for all involved.
  • Fortify and soak your team in prayer and surround them with great prayer intercessors and warriors to help with healing and getting over the leaving of the team member.
  • Don’t dwell on this for too long.
  • Don’t let others dwell on this, or let this be the topic of conversation that dominates other church and ministry conversations.
  • Document and learn the key take aways and then begin putting action steps together to move on in a way that allows for the appropriate implementation of new learnings, but doesn’t dominate or lead to the fear of the, “what ifs” seeping in.
  • Don’t gauge or measure potential future success for potential new staff team members based on this occurrence. In other words, don’t focus on the fact this didn’t work out, focus on the fact that God may have someone better gifted, suited, and called to serve waiting in the wings.
  • Turn to scripture, not gossip, to address concerns among other staff team members or church members. Don’t let gossip become a cancer in your church.
  • Consider using a coach to help your team work through action steps to help your church move forward toward building an even stronger team.

There are lots of other strategic and logistical things that could be added to this list. These deal with more of the emotional and relational aspects of recovering from a staff member leaving.

What would you add, how do you deal with the relational aspects of a staff member leaving?



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