Manpower: People are selected and placed in positions that fit their gifts, passions and callings and that align with the church’s objectives and culture

Six Processes and Systems of a Healthy Church Staff Culture

There is no singular cause and effect relationship in creating a church staff culture that is characterized by unity, high morale, clear communication, high retention rates, healthy conflict resolution, cross discipline collaboration and strategic ministry leadership and management.

The building blocks of a healthy church staff culture is the synergy that results from the skillful integration of six personnel related processes and systems. Virtually any staff related problem or dysfunction can be traced to short comings in one or more of the following processes and systems.

#1: A Hiring Process – A codified step by step process for hiring ministerial and support staff consistent with the governance of the church.

Goal: A 90+% hiring success rate. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • Ministry Constituency Needs Assessment Survey
  • Position Job Description Template
  • Position Profile Template
  • A Variety of Sources for potential candidates
  • Personality and Temperament Assessments
  • Screening Interview Guide
  • Job, Spiritual Depth and Culture Fit Interview Questions
  • Reference Check Questionnaire
  • Candidate Comparison Template
  • Offer Letter/Relocation Agreement
  • New Employee Orientation Template

#2 A Staff Development System – A codified multi-layered system for equipping church staff to lead, manage, think and act biblically and strategically.

Goal: Elevate the priority of self-development, establish a learning culture, and grow effective church leaders. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • A yearly measurable plan for both spiritual and professional development
  • Coaching, counseling, consulting and mentoring
  • Ministry specific and skill specific conferences, seminars and workshops
  • Ministry and skill specific books, web sites, organizations, and media
  • Ongoing staff wide training events
  • Church and peer ministry site visits to view best practices
  • Graduate and undergraduate degree programs

#3. A Performance Management Process – An ongoing process of communication and review between a supervisor and a staff member that occurs throughout the year, in support of accomplishing the strategic objectives of the church.

Goal: Establish a regular process of accountability and feed-back that is aligned with the church’s mission, vision, objectives and goals. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • Supervisor and supervisee training
  • Annual job and self-development goal template
  • Periodic performance review template (monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly)
  • Annual performance review template
  • Process for addressing sub-standard performance

#4. A System for Tying Compensation to Contribution – Using internal equity, external equity and a job performance assessment tool to determine rewards for those who hit pre-determined ministry and church goals.

Goal: To incentivize and reward employees for their contribution. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • Internal equity grades and salary bands
  • External equity sources and surveys
  • Evaluation criteria
  • Percent raise matrix
  • Variety of reward options

#5. A Process for Building Healthy Staff Values – Using Jesus’ 7 Core Values for Influencing Culture, Gallup’s 12 Areas of Employee Engagement Survey, and a workplace values assessment tool to agree on staff values and determine mutual accountabilities and initiatives for building a healthy work environment.

Goal: To identify commonly held convictions, ideals, beliefs, standards, and codes of workplace behavior and then develop initiatives to imbed them into the staff culture. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • Staff values survey
  • Staff values covenant
  • Staff values and team building retreat
  • Recognition initiatives
  • Supervisor training

#6. A Process for Developing Personnel Policies – A codified set of guidelines, policies and procedures that defines and clarifies the employer (church)-employee (staff) relationship.

Goal: A Personnel Policy Handbook that reflects Federal and State Law, Human Resource and healthy church best practices, and communicates the value and worth of the employee to the church. Includes but not limited to the following:

  • A Human Resource Compliance Audit
  • A review of the best HR practices of other churches
  • Personnel Policy Software Template


Posted on November 24, 2015

Jim Baker

Jim is a Church Organizational Leadership and Management Coach, Consultant and Trainer. Throughout his career Jim has demonstrated a passion for showing Pastors and Ministers how to use organizational tools for church and personal growth and health.

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“For I may be absent in body, but I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see how well ordered you are and the strength of your faith in Christ.” Colossians 2:5