Why we choose the wrong people for leadership


Our last blog, Seven Ways We Fail to Recruit for Ministry, focused on the reasons why we might actually miss and overlook people who could make great gospel workers.

However, we don’t just make mistakes in overlooking people for ministry, but on times we can actually find that we’ve selected the wrong people for leadership.

Here are nine reasons why we might choose the wrong person for ministry leadership:

1. We are focused on the externals of personality and ability and not the heart (1 Sam 16:7). We need to see beyond our personal prejudices related to external things such as intelligence, academic success, social status and physical appearance and get to know the inner person.

2. We choose the young convert (1 Tim 3:6).

3. We recruit to the institution or our personality, not the vision of the gospel. This creates inflexibility, dependence and wrong motivations.

4. We choose the charismatic star, the flashy over the faithful.

5. We choose the enthusiast who achieves little in the long-term. They volunteer for every ministry but may not be reliable or suitable.

6. We select those not loyal to us. Are they team players? Will our spouses get on with each other?

7. We recruit those motivated by attention seeking, dependency or empire building. Those who are overly dependent on acceptance and recognition may make poor ministry apprentices. They will jump through hoops, but for the wrong reasons.

8. We choose the socially awkward, who may be competent in many other ways. Notwithstanding the comments above about diverse personalities in ministry, those who are really awkward with others will have trouble teaching and leading.

9. We choose those with low secular work satisfaction. Are they more interested in ministry because work is boring or difficult?