Finding quality help is always a challenge. It is important to find the best fit for any position on your staff to avoid hiring someone only to eventually let them go. Additionally, there are red flags we sometimes ignore. Instead of allowing a thorough well thought out process to take place, we hire people because we are in desperate need to fill a spot. I recommend getting an HR consultant like my friends at Thomas Bickham Group or Vanderbloemen Search Group to take some of the subjectivity out of your process. Here are five people, from my experience, I recommend you avoid hiring if at all possible:

Top-Givers. Rewarding top givers in the church with a job is a dangerous move. The fact they are top givers already shows commitment and buy-in. Hiring this person on staff could result in you losing your top giver and others like him. It also sends a message that money motivated the move. You should always acknowledge top givers but giving them a position could actually cost you more than help you.

Family. It is honorable to have family members part of ministry. I love the thought of my children being on staff at a church, making an impact for the kingdom. If possible, I want them to be on staff at a church other than mine. The problem comes with discipline and favoritism. For a leader, it is a difficult thing to stay away from the discipline and correction of a family member, which could result in low morale for the entire staff. A leader could inadvertently show favoritism or be overly critical of the person. Either one is inappropriate. If you do take on a family member, first make sure they are qualified for the work, and second, separate yourself from the oversight of that person by empowering someone else to manage them like a regular employee.

Lazy People. Someone once said to me, “It is easy to hide in ministry”. What they meant is that some folks who are lazy and unmotivated can secure a ministry job and stay in it for awhile even though they are ineffective. Remember not everyone in ministry is called by God to be in that role. There are people who are in ministry full time because they can’t make it in corporate America. Or they dread doing manual labor. Do your diligence in asking questions, talking to references, and truly digging deep to see if the person you are looking to hire is looking for a place to hide.

Loyal but unqualified. Similar to the top giver scenario, we reward a person who has been loyal with a job they are not qualified to do. Serving faithfully in one area of ministry does not mean effectiveness in another area. Loyal people tug at your heart and if you are in a position to discipline or fire, they will try to withdraw all the deposits of faithfulness they put into you. If they are qualified, great, but steer clear of putting this person in the wrong seat. It will hurt even deeper when you have to let them go.

Attractive People. Let me clarify attractive. Obviously you want to hire people who carry themselves professionally and demonstrate good hygiene and personal care. The attractiveness I am referring to is he/she is attractive to you. You are interviewing her and notice her pretty eyes or great figure. Potential trouble. You are interviewing him and he has you giggling with his charm and nice smile. Potential trouble. Let’s be honest. Attractive people are treated differently than average people. Can you handle hiring someone who you think is attractive? This one is a bit subjective but it is important to know if there is a red flag at the beginning, it will not go away.

Do you have staff members who fall under these categories?

Anthony Cobbs