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Our blog about pastor search, church staffing, and church leadership from our years of experience

The 5 Words That Will Ruin Your Resume

There are countless articles that will tell you the latest trends in what to include on your resume. I highly recommend staying up-to-date on what these trends are. After all, your resume is a communication device that will either be compelling or boring to the reader.

If your employment journey does not inspire confidence in who you are and what you can do, then your potential employer or recruiter will likely keep looking for one that does. Just as the words you say during an interview matter, the words you use on your resume matter. Here are some words to avoid at all costs.

Posted by Bob Sutton on 12/6/17 7:00 AM

The Ultimate Giving Guide To Staff Raises

Every employee loves to receive a raise. Every boss loves to give a raise to a well-deserving employee. But how do you decide if you should give raises? And how do you decide who should and shouldn’t get a raise? How do you decide how much of a raise to give?

In this guide, you're going to learn a) if you should give raises to your staff this year and b) how much of a raise you should give.

Posted by David Whiting on 11/27/17 8:37 AM

How Gratitude Can Transform Your Interviews

I want to start my article about gratitude in the interview process by telling you how grateful I am. I am grateful for the opportunity to write down these thoughts and that you are reading them. I pray they are beneficial for you. I am grateful to be a part of this team at Vanderbloemen Search Group, a team that collaborates, brainstorms, and dreams together about how to better serve the Kingdom.

Recently, our team had the privilege of coming together and naming some of the “x-factors” that we often hear people talk about in the interview process. One characteristic that came up often was gratitude. Candidates who express gratitude on a regular basis stand out above others.

Generally, job descriptions divide expectations of candidates into two broad categories: competencies/skills or culture fit/character qualities. The “x-factor” topic generally addresses the latter group and is obviously much larger than I can address in this short article. However, I hope to describe general gratitude as one of the “x-factors” that can be implemented by everyone involved in the interview process, and it is more of a choice than an attribute or aptitude.

Whether you're a candidate in the job search process or an interviewer in the hiring process, here are specific ways you can choose gratitude.

Posted by Sam Murray on 11/22/17 7:00 AM

4 Ways Churches Can Combat High Costs Of Living For Pastors

Our friends and clients in ministry often ask our team how churches are handling the ever-changing economic state, especially regarding rising housing costs. We hear countless stories of churches that are unable to recruit top-level leaders because it’s simply too expensive to put down permanent roots in the community. 

Some of the most effective pastors are successful because they are living amongst and truly “doing life” with their church communities. Unfortunately, for churches in an area with a high cost of living allowance (COLA), this makes it more difficult to find and attract the right pastor.

In some cases, a church will own a parsonage or manse and allow its pastor to live rent free, but that is not financially feasible for most churches. As we’ve worked with our church clients on customized compensation and benefits analyses, we’ve taken note of some creative ways that we’ve seen churches address the high housing costs associated with bringing a new pastor on staff.


Below are four examples to consider in your hiring process.

Posted by Ben Homesley on 11/13/17 7:00 AM

9 Overlooked Costs Of A Bad Hire

Making a bad hire is expensive. In our work with churches and ministries, we’ve found that many organizations don’t realize the real costs that are involved in hiring the wrong person. Yes, you will spend money on a few job postings and travel in the hiring process, but the costs go well beyond that. 

Below are nine common costs that churches often overlook in the hectic season of finding a new staff member.

Posted by Sarah Robins on 11/2/17 7:00 AM

5 Questions To Address During A Pastoral Transition


The first line of the book NEXT: Pastoral Succesion That Works is, "Every pastor is an interim pastor."

Whether a season of ministry lasts three years or three decades, every church will be faced with the inevitable challenge of replacing its pastor at some point. Some transitions will be positive, and it will be appropriate to surround them with praise and celebration. However, a transition often occurs because a pastor is involved in something that requires them to step away from ministry.

Churches often ask what is the “standard severance package” or the “standard way” they should handle their pastoral transition. Our answer is always the same: there is no standard answer. Every transition will have different aspects that will influence the what the severance package and departing situation looks like.

Here are five issues your church leadership and board should think through when faced with a pastoral transition.

Posted by Ben Homesley on 11/1/17 7:00 AM

4 Leadership Mistakes That Are Driving Away Your Staff Members

Church staff members will leave their positions for many personal reasons. Maybe they're moving closer to aging parents, following their spouse's job change, choosing to stay at home with their children, or going back to school to continue their education. But the majority of reasons why ministry staff leave their jobs are under the control of the church and the lead staff. In fact, any element of your current workplace (your culture, environment, expectations, perceptions and growth opportunities) could be a factor that affects staff and their longevity in your church ministry.

Posted by Brian Dunks on 10/26/17 7:00 AM

5 Reasons To Take A Church Internship

Internships and residencies are becoming very commonplace in ministry, and just like in the corporate world, they offer many lasting benefits. Some internships are unpaid and others only offer a small stipend, but they all offer valuable experience that could aid in your job search.

Posted by Jeff Gilmer on 10/25/17 7:01 AM

How To Avoid "Transplant Shock" In Ministry

I don’t know much about plants (side note: I may have killed a succulent, which apparently, is the easiest thing to keep alive), but I was reading up about “transplant shock” and found it surprisingly relatable to how we sometimes react to a change in environment or circumstance. One piece I read noted that, “transplant shock” isn’t necessarily the result of damaging the plant when moving it from one place to the other. Rather, it’s a direct result of a plant not being able to adapt fast enough to a sudden change of environment. 

Relocating, like change, is an inevitable part of life, especially for those in ministry. The whole process of moving, from discerning when to leave to supporting your family throughout the transition, is a lot to handle, but that’s only half of the battle.

Posted by Chelsea Tyson on 10/23/17 7:00 AM

3 Things To Consider Before Hiring A Remote Employee

I’ve had the opportunity to work at Vanderbloemen as an Intern, a remote part-time employee, and now an in-house, full-time employee. While my roles have remained relatively consistent, the setting has varied quite a bit. I’ve concluded that this makes me the perfect guinea pig for a study on in-house vs. virtual employees.

Posted by Maggie Richter on 10/11/17 7:00 AM

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