Tag Archive: culture

The Critical Nature of Staff Orientation & 100 Day Reviews

©aleksandarfilip / Dollar Photo Club

Everyone I know who does this, does it differently. But not everyone does this.

When you don’t go through orientation and an early review, you’re missing out on a great opportunity to gather fresh ideas and insights. It allows you the opportunity to build relationships and ensures that everyone who works with you is on the same page.

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Key Interview Component: the Cultural Call

orange retro phone
Photo contributor: Grafner via iStockphoto®
As a church, before you start asking a lot of interview questions of a ministerial candidate,
first, talk about you.

We recently hired a campus and teaching pastor for our newest regional campus. For this pastor, I followed the same selection process we use for all ministerial hires. In one of his last group interviews with us, he commented about one step in the section process. He spoke about the value of the “cultural call” we had with him. At the time, he was unsure of the benefit of the hour long call that unpacked our church’s history, mission, community demographics and more. One it was a lot of information. Two, I was talking the whole time and not asking him any questions (even though he’s the candidate). And three, much of the information wasn’t about the specific church campus he would pastor. Despite his natural reservations, we’ve discovered great value in the “cultural call” (click here for PDF template). It was created prior to my time, I’m just a grateful recipient of the work. Benefits of the cultural call:

  1. It provides context for the ministry opportunity to the candidate
  2. It’s shameless about presenting the facts about your church’s situation (whether they’re selling points or not)
  3. It establishes things that are in place, and will not be heavily influenced by the candidate
  4. It lets a candidate know what they’re getting into
  5. It gives them an understanding of the church’s leadership structure and how decisions are made

When they’re done with the call, a candidate has a pretty clear picture of where the church is at, where it’s been, and where it’s going. They can then determine if it’s a church they want to be a part of.

Practical takeaway:

  • Create a “cultural call” template for your church to use in your own selection process. Ours can provide you an outline and then you can tweak it and add in your needed information.

There’s been a time this call ends the interview process with a candidate. When a candidate gets this much information, they can often determine whether they can see themselves serving with us. And in some cases, they don’t see themselves fitting well. And there are other times when our unapologetic explanation of our mission, objectives and where we see God leading us is a big affirmation to what God has burdened their heart with.

p.s. If you want to read about what I consider to be the needed first step in hiring, click here for a blog post and free resource.

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How You’re Disrespecting Others

We’ve all done it.

But the occasional occurrence isn’t the issue. It’s the pattern that’s the problem.

It’s being late—habitually late.

Primarily, I’m focusing on lateness in the work environment.

A pattern (more than 1/5 meetings) of lateness communicates one thing to the others in the room:

“My time and work is more important than your time and work.”

You’d likely never say those words, but that’s often how it’s interpreted.

I don’t believe, nor do I model, that the higher on the org chart you are, the more margin you have for lateness. Promptness and respect are a cultural ethos thing, and it emanates from the leader(s). If in fact your time is more valuable than others’ time, then be courteous enough to either:

1.            Let others know you’ll be late;

2.            Or have the meeting set at an alternative time that works for you.

How to modify your habitual lateness:

•  If a meeting is called, it’s likely collaborative. If you’re invited, it implies you add value in the collaboration. When you’re not there, you can’t collaborate. You lose value.

•  Even if the meeting isn’t collaborative, your supervisor wants you there. You should respect his or her wishes.  (If you don’t think you need to attend the meeting, address that with your supervisor in a respectful and thought-out plan at the appropriate time.)

•  Being late creeps into longer lateness. It begins with five minutes. To you, no harm, no foul. But then next time, it’s ten minutes, and you begin an expanding pattern. It creeps into others, and you begin setting an unhealthy cultural ethos.

•  Consider how you feel when you host meetings or schedule something, and people are late. It’s a sign of disrespect—and it impacts the plans you had.

How to deal with habitually-late people:

•  Make promptness a part of your ethos. Clearly communicate the expectation, and then model it as the leader.

•  Start meetings on time—no matter who’s not there. (At least when they walk in late, they’ll realize they’re, in fact, late.)

•  After 2-3 infractions, challenge the person. Do it privately, but do it. It could sound like, “I’ve noticed you’ve been late to our meetings for several weeks in a row. I realize you’ve got a lot of things going on, and you produce a lot of great results, but the chronic lateness is something we don’t allow. I want you to be diligent in being on time. When you are, it communicates to others on the team that you’re in with them, and you share in the mutual responsibility of using everyone’s time well.”

•  As much as possible, be conscientious of setting meeting times when they’re likely going to work for the majority of invitees.

If you’re “the late person,” I challenge you to focus on being prompt for your next three meetings.

If you lead those who are “the late person,” challenge them within the next week.

Email me or message me, I’d love to hear how your late experiment goes.

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