If I was a new pastor I would do these things.
1. Be sure sure to give words of appreciation to those who stepped up in the absence of a pastor.
2. Be sure to give praise to the former pastor. I would search for ways to praise and love him publicly. You cannot lose with those who love him by praising him. Neither can you win with those who did not like him by being critical of his leadership.
3. Go over the financials and draw lines where you began. Know what you have to work with and immediately work a budget.
4. Before I got in place I would have them do a accurate count at least three times. Many times the numbers are exaggerated and when you give the accurate numbers you could be blamed for a decrease that never existed.
5. Be careful of those who praise you and criticize the former leader.
7. I would take a long time to evaluate where the church was at and where I wanted to take it.
8. Access the leadership strength in all areas.
9. I would have a conversation with the last two pastors to access the history.
10. I would not take away a lot of things at first. I would try to add to what the church is doing. Time will come when they will start asking you to take away those things that should go.
11. I would be myself and try to adapt to the new culture in dress, style and life.
12. I would try to find the things that have kept the church from growing and deal with them.
13. I would access the health of the congregation and leadership.
14. I would move around the community to get a gauge of the visibility and likability of the church.
15. I would keep my opinions close to by chest and sparingly give advise until I was educated about the history of the church and its conflicts.
16. I would start building bridges with community leaders, hospitals, schools, businesses, civic clubs, ministerial associations, sectional leaders, district and national leaders.
17. I would have a lot of meetings with different people.
18. I would evaluate the church Calendar
19. I would evaluate the church staff.
20. I would pray for wisdom, favor and vision. I would fall on my face for God to have mercy on the congregation and not let me in my arrogance make the church miss its calling and purpose.