Unless you place their duties in writing, there is a good chance that they will forget much of what you told them. For this reason, the written job description is very important. Your delegated director will refer back to it repeatedly. Job descriptions are not documents to be locked away in filing cabinets, but tools to be continually used, examined, and updated.
By Tim Massengale
For a number of years I traveled full-time assisting churches in setting up a church growth and evangelism structure.
While traveling from church to church and working with various directors and Christian workers, it is common to hear lay leaders say over and again: “I don’t really know what I’m supposed to be doing.”
On the other side of the picture, I would often hear pastors give a very different, complaint: “Why can’t I get my directors to do their job?”
The problem here is obviously that of communication. Good communication is a vital key to church staff performance, whether it is for paid or volunteer workers. One of the most basic and important tools of good communication is that of job descriptions.
Why The Job Is Not Done
Let me tell you about a pastor who got a call one Sunday morning. The call was from one of his bus drivers. The bus was broke down on their Sunday Morning run to pick up children.
“Broke down” was putting it mildly. The engine was blown. And he felt he knew right where the problem lay.
His Maintenance Director had neglected to insure that the oil and water was checked before clearing the bus for use that morning. “What’s the problem?” the pastor said. “Why would a normally dependable man neglect an important job like that?”
At first glance, it would appear that the director is clearly at fault and obviously incompetent. But a closer examination revealed that the Maintenance Director had thought the Sunday Morning inspection was the responsibility of the bus driver. The bus driver thought it was taken care of by the Bus Ministry Director. The whole thing was an unfortunate mix up. So now let me ask you, who’s really at fault?
The problem this pastor had was a typical one. When a department director does not do their job, or is not following through with their responsibilities, a pastor must first check to insure that the person appointed meets the two prerequisites of good delegation – that of faithfulness and desire. But most often the response from the pastor is “yes, this person was a faithful, dependable worker before I placed them in the position of leadership, and they expressed to me a desire for this area of Christian service.”