Exit Interviews
By: John Laster
In order for leadership teams or ministry teams to function in a healthy manner for the long term, problems and issues need to be surfaced and dealt with as they come up. Friction or conflict serves to strengthen teams if dealt with constructively. From time to time people resign or in some manner step down from servant leadership roles in the congregation. These are built in opportunities to create a learning window for the team and congregation’s leaders. Request an exit interview with each individual leaving a leadership role in your congregation. Three questions can open constructive dialogue.

1. What went well for you as you served on this team?

2. What did not go so well? (What were some of the contributing issues that may have prompted your resignation?)

3. In your opinion, what changes could be made in this team to bring increasing health and effectiveness?

In these interviews it is important to listen and coach the individual toward increasing clarity. The exit interview is no place for justification of congregational or leadership behavior, or rebuttals to the observations of the person you are interviewing. Following your exit interview, the leadership team has a mirror of sorts to use in improving processes, functions or behaviors in your team and congregation.