CNLP 180: William Vanderbloemen on How to Gain a Competitive Advantage by Creating An Amazing Culture Staff and Volunteers Won’t Want to Leave

Every church and workplace has a culture. Unfortunately, often it’s a bad one.

The Vanderbloemen Search Group has been named by Entrepreneur magazine and other organizations as one of America’s top workplace cultures. William Vanderbloemen explains the keys to creating an amazing workplace culture and why it will help you gain a competitive edge in an increasingly scarce labor market.

Welcome to Episode 180 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free.

Guest Links

William on Instagram | Twitter | |

Culture Wins: The Roadmap to an Irresistible Workplace

CNLP 019: How to Replace Yourself. Why Every Leader (Even Young Leaders) Need a Succesion Plan to be Successful—An Interview with William Vanderbloemen

CNLP 114: William Vanderbloemen on How to Know When It’s Time to Quit

Links Mentioned

The High Impact Leader FREE Webinar is TODAY! Register now for Carey’s FREE Webinar: The 3 Little-Known Secrets High Capacity Leaders Use to Take Back Their Calendars, Crush Their To-Do Lists, and Spend More Time With Their Families. February 20th, 11amPST/2pmEST. Spots are limited. Learn more at

Rethink Leadership in Atlanta Georgia, April 25-27th 2018

The Canadian Church Leaders Conference, Barrie Ontario, June 14-16th 2018

TrainedUp Use coupon code FIRST50 and receive 50% off of your first month of service!

The New Gold Standard

Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast: Creating World Class Service, Part 1

GLS Podcast Episode 010: Horst Schulze 

3 Insights from This Episode

1. Spending time and money on work culture should be intentional

There isn’t an exact formula for how much time and money to spend in order to have a healthy work culture. Really, it’s not the amount that’s important, it’s the intent behind the effort that matters most.

One good way to gage how your team is doing is to look at your recruiting issues. When you get to the place where people are lined up and begging to work with you, you’re spending the right amount of time and money on work culture. Another great sign is when former staffers continue to serve as references or remain active influencers when they’re no longer on the payroll. 

2. Drive values from the hiring to the firing to keep culture consistent as you grow

We’ve all sat in on a strategic planning meeting where items were defined and then never spoken of again. To keep a consistent culture in your office, co-define and embed those values into the full life cycle of an employee – from the hiring to the firing.

Start with the initial interview and on-boarding process. Keep infusing the culture regularly within the calendar during meetings and team building experiences. And even end a journey – whether leaving by choice or not – by reflecting on the cultural legacy that person may or may not be leaving behind.  

Intentionally driving the values home from start to finish maintains consistency and can keep a team from weakening as it grows.   

3. Consider adding cultural values to your annual reviews

If you have someone on your team working just well enough not to get fired, that person most likely doesn’t fit culturally (and probably isn’t happy working there). Measuring values can protect the culture of your organization and be a productive way to alert those staffers lagging behind that they need to step up their game.

Use annual reviews to evaluate how your team lives out cultural values. Better yet, tie compensation directly to them. Someone can hit all the sales numbers in the world, but when cultural values aren’t met, no extras are being brought to the table.

Quotes from This Episode

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Next Episode: Brad Lomenick  

Brad Lomenick is back on the podcast and sits down with Carey Nieuwhof for a roundtable to discuss a number of trends in the church: church attendance, online engagement, the morphing of cool church, isolation in leadership and much more. Plus, Brad and Carey talk about the vision behind the Rethink Leadership event happening in Atlanta, April 25-27th, 2018.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 181.

CNLP 180: William Vanderbloemen on How to Gain a Competitive Advantage by Creating An Amazing Culture Staff and Volunteers Won’t Want to Leave


  1. Jason Matters on March 30, 2018 at 12:13 pm

    Loved this podcast! At a recent leadership retreat, we asked our board and staff members to list the five people from our church who they would want on their team if they were starting a new church. Our goal was to identify who is really living out the best of who we are and who we want to be. There were a lot of names shared, but one person was on almost everyone’s list. Six months later, we have been able to hire that person for a lead role!

  2. Dorren Rodriguez on March 4, 2018 at 1:48 pm

    Hello! Is there a link to the research done about response time?

  3. Daniel B Keane on February 28, 2018 at 4:00 pm

    I appreciate all that was shared in CNLP 180 podcast. I have one concern. Using culture as the deciding factor of who is with us and who is not seems like a powerful tool to getting things done, but is it not just a 21st century version of the homogeneous principle? Where we divide us and them on some attribute or attitude. If they are not responding to our checklist can we be fully faithful to the great commission? I discern that Jesus called 12 men that did and did not emulate using culture as the factor of who became his disciples. I guess the biggest challenge is to use this tool in such a way that does not exclude the very people God wants us to reach who are from many diverse cultures. I say this not as a criticism but as one trying to find my way to being a better leader. Thanks.

  4. Jeffrey Lancaster on February 20, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    I’ve registered for today’s leadership webinar but have no idea how to access the webinar. Don’t see any instructions

    • Jeffrey Lancaster on February 20, 2018 at 1:59 pm

      I’ve registered for today’s leadership webinar but have no idea how to access the webinar. Don’t see any instructions

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