6 Traits Employers Look For In Church Job Seekers
At Vanderbloemen, we work with churches of many different sizes, denominations, and staff hiring needs. While each church is unique and looking for something specific in their next hire, we do see a handful of common traits that employers are looking for in every candidate that applies.
1. Good First Impression
First thing's first – we all know that a good first impression is going to go a long way for employers, but an important thing to remember is that not all first impressions necessarily happen in person. These days, you may be giving off a first impression over and over again, depending on how many interview rounds you go through.
How quickly and formally you respond to the initial e-mail from an employer? That's a first impression. How clearly and concisely your resume is organized? That's a first impression. The content you are posting and the accounts you are following on social media outlets? First impression. In our technology-saturated world, the definition of a first impression has simply expanded.
After a great first impression, the second trait a future employer is going to look for is the skills required for the position. Obviously having the appropriate skill set for the position you are applying for is extremely important.
Are you applying for a videographer position but don't know the first thing about operating a camera? Then you probably don't have the skill set for the position. Applying for a teaching pastor position but have never taught from the main stage? Then maybe that position is not the best fit for you. Be honest about the skills and experience you carry, and use them as a lens to clearly see each position for what it is and what expectations will be required.
3. Culture Fit
We spend a lot of our time here at Vanderbloemen assessing candidates that not only carry the skill set for the positions we're hiring for, but also for people that will be a good cultural fit for the organization. We are not just looking for people that can do the job but also for people that are going to fit the church theologically and culturally. It is important for employers to see that a candidate is going to add value to their team - both professionally and personally.
4. Readiness to Learn
Employers expect that there will be a learning curve for every new employee. They don't expect new hires to come in with a complete understanding of organizational processes and protocols. However, what they will expect is a new employee’s readiness and willingness to learn.
Self-awareness is one of the most valuable traits a person can possess, both in their everyday life and in the job search process. Being self-aware enough to know the difference between positions you truly qualify for and the ones you don't can make the job search process a lot easier, and a lot more enjoyable. Employers will also value a candidate that shows self-awareness throughout the interview process, as that will be an indicator for what their work and ministry attitude will look like.
Will they take ownership if they make a mistake? Will they put in a little more effort for a project that carries more weight? These will be questions they will be asking themselves as they interview each candidate.
Listed last on this list but certainly not least, is a genuine excitement to be a part of the organization you are interviewing with. Are you truly eager to work with this organization or are you just in need of a job? Employers will easily be able to recognize those candidates that are excited to be a part of their team, and those candidates will always stand out above the rest.
These are just a handful of traits employers look for in candidates. Are there any that you specifically look for?