Of the thousands of pastors you have known, coached, consulted and personally led, what makes the best the best?

Kevin Queen, one of our Campus Pastors at 12Stone® Church recently asked me that question.  He wasn’t referring to senior pastors, but pastors and ministry leaders on a staff team.

That was an intriguing question, and I’m glad Kevin asked. Let me offer these thoughts in hopes that they may help you select and develop the very best for your team.

Kayla Adams at 12Stone Church

1) They possess a simultaneous kindness and fierceness.

There are those that are very kind, and those who are strong and fierce competitors. But it’s far less common to find both traits in any one individual. These unique people exist. I’ve worked with many and still do. They possess both compassion for people and an unrelenting drive and energy to get the job done.

2) They are hungry to grow and embrace change.

The best pastors and ministry leaders have a capacity for greater influence. They love to learn, want to be stretched and are self-starters. They can rise to the next level. They bring energy to the game! We often say of these leaders when they join the team: “Somebody just showed up!”

3) They are self-aware and secure.

The best know themselves well. They possess a self-awareness and personal security that leads to great personal confidence. The truth is that nobody wants to follow an insecure leader, but people easily follow an authentic leader who knows him or herself well and is comfortable in their own skin. These leaders are easy to be around and possess natural relational savvy. They are the kind you’d like to go to a ball game with!

4) They are intelligent and see problems and solutions faster than others.

Anyone can identify a problem, but good leaders can see them and solve them faster than others. The very best leaders anticipate the problem before it happens. The bottom line is that they are very good at what they do. Their ministry and leadership competence is easily evident. You can count on them, trust their judgment and quickly give them greater levels of responsibility.

5) They love people and are willing to serve.

Jesus modeled the greatest love in the world, the love of the Father. It’s not always easy but the best of the best genuinely care deeply about people.

Chris Huff is an engineer by training and pastor by calling, but few people love others like Chris does. I’ve watched him consistently care about people for 14 years and I’m blessed to call him my friend. He daily demonstrates a willingness to serve, put others first, and sets his own agenda aside. We are blessed to have Chris on the team at 12Stone as Pastor of Logistics.


So, what do you think? Wouldn’t you love to have a person like this on your staff? What attributes would you add to this list? Please leave a comment.