The Basic Process of Hiring

March 11, 2014 — Leave a comment

As I’ve served in the role of Executive Pastor for the past two years, one of the key responsibilities I have is building a staff team.  With the help of Kevin Peck and Dave Barrett, I’ve developed a pretty thorough philosophy and process of staff hiring.  The following posts will develop these ideas:

This blog series will highlight some foundational ideas I’ve utilized in building the Campus and Missional Community team at The Austin Stone.

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The Basic Process of Hiring

After briefly looking at some core philosophical convictions, the natural question in hiring goes toward processes.  Here is a brief outline of the process of candidacy, interviewing, assessment and hiring:

  1. Thinking you might need to hire someone
  2. Understand the position you are trying to fill
  3. Identifying and recruiting potential candidates
  4. Assessing candidates through calling, culture, capacity/competency, and character
  5. Finalizing details for employment
  6. Getting off to a good start

We have found that in most circumstances of hiring, these are the stages you will go through, and the following posts will fill out in detail how we approach the different stages.

Do We Need to Hire?

The hiring process begins long before engaging with candidates. It begins when a leader first considers the possibility of hiring for a specific role in our staff. What roles to hire and when to hire them flow out of several key principles of our hiring strategy.

We are purposefully a lean organization. This is for four reasons

  1. Being lean is good stewardship of our financial resources
  2. Being lean allows us to have a culture of generosity and blessing for the employees we do have on staff
  3. Being lean helps us stay aligned with the biblical role of church leadership in Ephesians 4
  4. Being lean requires us to be good leaders and leader developers

This means that we want to be slow to hire, considering carefully the need and impact of bringing a particular role and particular individual on as a full-time church employee.

The philosophical convictions we have must be carefully weighed with respect to making a request or decision to hire. Our strategic leaders/elders need to be on board with any hire, not just for practical reasons, but also for philosophical ones. This team’s agreement is a key test of the decision to hire a role being in alignment with these philosophies.

When we do agree that a hire is going to be made, the next step is to understand the role.  I will cover that in the next post.

What have been key trigger points in understanding when to hire for you?

Todd Engstrom

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Although I was raised in the church and had a knowledge of God, I didn’t embrace Jesus until I heard gospel preached and lived out by some Young Life leaders. God has proven faithful and good to me since that day, even in great suffering and loss. I have learned to treasure Romans 8:28 as a wellspring of hope and truth. God has blessed me with an amazing wife (Olivia), three sons (Micah, Hudson and Owen) and a daughter (Emmaline). Growing up in the northwest, the thought never crossed my mind that I would have four children who are native Texans. Despite landing in the south, I still watch Notre Dame games with my children every Saturday in hopes they will land at my alma mater.

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