Who’s Interviewing Whom?

It’s no secret that my husband and I are on the job market. He is looking for pastoral positions; I am considering teaching possibilities. Some of you may be in the same boat, looking for your next ministry opportunity.

As we proceed through the various stages of the hiring process, Dave and I need to remind ourselves that we are interviewing these organizations just as much as they are interviewing us. It can be easy to get caught up in, “You like me, you really like me!” and to be more concerned with impressing them than about evaluating whether they are also the right fit for us.

Just as in any relationship, issues that seem like little things now can become big headaches later. Does the organization communicate with you clearly and in a timely manner? What is the pace of the decision-making process? Who is really in charge? What is the dynamic in interviews and other conversations? Do they say things like, “Of course, we’ll take care of that” without providing specific details or deadlines? Have you conducted reference checks on them, talking to previous employees or others who know the inner workings of the organization?

Don’t fall so in love that you view the prospective situation through rose-colored glasses and make yourself susceptible to disappointment based on unrealistic expectations. If you have questions, ask. If you have concerns, bring them up now. What do you have to lose? If your questions cost you the job, then it probably wasn’t the right fit for you in the first place.

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