Fall is coming... will you be ready?
Back when I was in Bible College, one of my youth ministry professors referred to the period between February and June as "hiring season" in the church. It makes a ton of sense. Most churches want to have their new teammates in place before school starts, and the summer is an easier (not easy) time to move.
- Plan on a later start date: In an ideal world, your next youth/kids/worship/whatever pastor will be in place before the beginning of the school year. If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that the ideal world doesn't exist. A smart church will plan on a search taking a minimum of 6 months from start to finish, and in our current uncertain season, it may take longer.
- People are nervous: The last 90 days have taken a season that is already fraught with anxiety and cranked it up to 11. Candidates that were already wrestling with questions of calling, employment, and living arrangements are now worried about family members, their ability to find a job, and trying to stay healthy. Search teams that were already nervous about finding the right person in time for the start of the school year and now worried about the financial position of the church, whether they are reopening correctly, and when things will be back to normal. Recognize the anxiety. Understand that this is going to affect your process and conversations, and be prepared to be far more graceful than normal.
- Push Start: If you are serious about adding to your team, the time to start is now. Over the last three weeks, we have seen churches and candidates begin to restart the search process, and are beginning to see churches who had to press pause due to COVID 19 begin to hire the candidates that they had in process with before travel restrictions began. Bottom line, if you are looking to have someone in place within the next six months, start now.