3 Questions With William Vanderbloemen

William Vanderbloemen, President/CEO of Vanderbloemen Search Group, a pastor search firm that helps churches and ministries build great teams. Before founding Vanderbloemen Search Group, William was a pastor for fifteen years. William is an expert when it comes to church staffing and has a ton of experience leading ministry leaders. 


Here are 3 Questions I recently asked William:

When it comes to hiring in the church what is the number one mistake the church leaders make and why?

One of the major mistakes I see church leaders making in the hiring process is ignoring the weight of culture-fit. One of my hiring mantras is, "Culture trumps competency every time." 

Of course, you need a person with the right competency and capability for the role, but I see way too many church leaders overlook culture-fit. They spot a great resume that checks all the boxes of background and accomplishments they are looking for in a person, that they forget to ask questions like:

"How does this person's personality and natural gift sets complement those of our other team members?" 

"Does this person's personal ministry values match those of our church/ministry?"

"Does this person's heart beat for our specific community?" 

You can teach a lot, but culture-fit is nearly impossible to teach. 


In VanderCoaching you discuss legal issues in the church. What are some of the core legal issues that church leaders need to be thinking about and is anyone really going to sue a church?

Unfortunately, I've seen church leaders who have accidentally stepped into things that they didn't realize was a legal issue until it was too late. In VanderCoaching, David Middlebrook of Church Law Group and I discuss legal matters that most pastors and church leaders are not taught in seminary including:

  • Legalities of housing allowance
  • Legalities of child abuse happening on church property
  • Legalities of entering a counseling relationship with a member of your congregation
  • Legalities of intellectual property rights - who owns your sermons?

These are crucial topics for church leaders to understand and be equipped to encounter. In VanderCoaching, church leaders will receive coaching on how to effectively avoid these potential legal roadblocks.


It seems like all church leaders do is meet. They meet with staff, committees, more committees and then a committee meeting to decide who is going to be in the other committees. How can pastors find a healthy balance in having the right number of meetings and the most effective and efficient meetings possible?

This is a great question, and it looks different for every leader and every church. In VanderCoaching, I have a whole module on meetings, because it is one of the most crucial elements of running a great team. Many leaders do not realize how expensive meetings are. The next time you book a meeting, ask yourself: 

  • Do all of these people really need to be present for this meeting? Be sure only those who are absolutely necessary to the meeting's outcome are present. 
  • Do we really need to meet for that long? The next time you plan a meeting, count up everyone's hourly pay for the time they are in the meeting. Is this meeting important enough to merit the investment of the money you're spending on your team members' time?
  • Are you a bottleneck for decisions being made on your church staff? If people are constantly having to book meetings with you for decisions to be made, you are likely slowing your team down. The most effective leaders I know delegate decisions down to team leaders and equip them to make decisions that further the mission of the church. 

To hear more about VanderCoaching check them out here https://vandercoaching.com/?a_id=WfFweXvtzXpX6Yg2F2Zj6A&locale=en