Beginning a coaching relationship includes doing a ministry assessment and creating a set of Coaching Objectives that outline what the relationship will accomplish over the term of the contract. To get anything meaningful accomplished together, most contract terms are one year in duration. Oftentimes, at the request of the church leader, I'll schedule a site visit at or near the beginning of the contract period. This allows me to experience a weekend service, meet other staff members, and gain a better understanding of the overall ministry, including its successes and challenges.
- Meeting Frequency - Coaching happens two times per month via 1-hour Zoom video sessions. By the end of the year, the executive pastor/church administrator is ready to go, having "checked the box" on several critical church administration and leadership actions.
- Objective - For a new executive pastor, my goal is to help them begin their new ministry successfully, having accomplished a number of first-year objectives. For an experienced executive pastor, I help to identify areas of ministry that would benefit from better infrastructure and the development of systems, processes, and methods.
- Access to Materials - Coaching relationships include access to materials and methods that can be easily edited and adjusted for the new executive pastor's specific situation, preventing the need to start from scratch.
- Strategic Planning - Very often, the first few months of the coaching relationship include a strategic planning session facilitation and overall guidance in the completion of a documented one to three-year strategic plan.
- Customization - The nature and duration of a coaching relationship can be customized and tailored to specific needs. Almost anything (duration, meeting frequency, areas of focus, etc.) related to my typical coaching services can be discussed to ensure the relationship benefits the client.
- Fee - I do charge a monthly fee for my coaching. The fee does two things. It formalizes the relationship and ensures that both the individual being coached and I take the relationship seriously. It holds us both accountable to do what is necessary between calls to accomplish the objectives identified. The fee is negotiable based on the size of the church's budget and a few other factors. Contact me to discuss the fee.
Feel free to contact any of my previous clients to ask questions about me or my coaching services. Contact me for a formal list of client references.
Here are excerpts from a couple of letters of reference I've received over the years:
"The highlights of my coaching relationship with Kevin Stone include the opportunity to speak the same language and connect on the same challenges that the Executive Pastor role will face. Kevin is a wealth of knowledge and has a network of resources far beyond my years in ministry that he offers access to. During a coaching session, Kevin would always take time to talk through specific situations and hear the current challenge I was facing for that week. I would recommend the coaching relationship to both new Executive Pastors and seasoned Executive Pastors at any size church. Sincerely, Mike Morrow, Executive Pastor of Operations, Crossroads"
It is with a grateful heart that I am writing to you as I reflect over this last year’s coaching. Your coaching has provided timely resources, much-needed perspective, and wise counsel regarding a wide range of issues, concerns and, most importantly, decisions. The help you have provided has been in military parlance, a much needed “forcemultiplier.” In short, your coaching of my work added up to a sum much greater than two guys talking over a video conference call! Whether it is an urgently needed resource, perspective on a complex issue, a listening ear in the midst of a difficult challenge, or the experienced hand to help navigate a difficult decision, you're coaching has made a tremendous difference. To anyone considering coaching for the executive pastor, I could not more highly recommend Kevin Stone. His life yielded to Jesus Christ, wisdom forged in the crucible of experience, and a no-nonsense approach learned from helping hundreds of leaders combine to empower leaders to become the people God wants them to be as they serve in the church in the strategic role of executive pastor. With much appreciation, Tom Clegg. "
I reached out to Kevin in the summer of 2012 as I was asked to support a major restructuring at our church. I didn’t even realize the position until I was doing some web searching on the topic and came across ExecutivePastorOnline.com. I sent a simple request for info, and Kevin and I have had a great relationship from that point forward. Kevin and I have a similar IT background in the corporate world so we really had a lot in common with more than just our current pastoral responsibilities. We began on a simple coaching agreement that initially lasted a year. He assisted me in the identification of key infrastructure priorities and helped me navigate through the challenges of establishing processes where there were none. Through his resources and experiences, we were able to develop a document management system and continue to use that framework to this day. Another major task during that first year was to develop our first strategic plan in many years. Kevin facilitated that two-day conference that led to our four top priorities “plus 1.” Little did I know then that the innocent “plus 1” led to a major property acquisition and the development of a capital campaign strategy. Kevin led the capital campaign strategic development with weekly leadership calls through the successful launch of the campaign in November 2013. Even though our “coaching” agreement is completed, I consider Kevin a trusted friend and one who was instrumental in my transition into full-time ministry at Restoration Park Church. Sincerely, Mark J. Debreceni"