Resignations and dismissals don’t necessarily need to be negative.
By taking time to pay close attention to the details surrounding an employee who needs to move on, you may find that God is doing something new. If a personnel change is inevitable, try to find a way to “send” the person out to their next big adventure with God. Many times senior leaders fail to recognize that the reason the person needs to move on is because God has stirred up a holy discontent in their heart. “Sending” feels much better than “leaving” especially when it is legitimate. Also, “sending” helps minimize collateral damage with the individual, other staff, and parishioners.
Just keep in mind that no matter what you do or how well you do it, some people are going to leave at some point. Don’t allow your desire to avoid the pain of “a lot of people” leaving to outweigh the wise decision to nip a personnel issue in the bud. Your job is to be the voice of reason as you remind everyone that the church exists to lead people into a growing relationship with Christ. Those who don’t see this vision of the church probably will never be pleased.
Remember Jesus gave us a model for dealing with unacceptable behavior. Whether it is from a parishioner or a staff member, the steps are to:
- tell the person
- take some leaders along and tell the person again
- tell the whole church before sending this person on their way
To grow in this area, I suggest reading Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High.