Teams aren’t just for sports. To reach big goals, we often organize into teams. Teams can be a force multiplier. But poorly run teams can drain your strength and pull everyone down. Ministries often organize teams for their work with mixed results. A major reason people leave their work is frustration with a dysfunctional team. It doesn’t have to be that way.
Unify around a clear vision
Without a vision the people perish. Without a clear vision, teams lose their way. Take time to work together with a team to be sure everyone agrees on the vision and goals. Everyone should “pull” in the same direction. It is tempting to think that everyone understands the goal and it is a waste of time talking about it. Even when everyone uses the same words they often understood differently. Take time to be sure that everyone is understanding the same way.
Know the composition of your team
Each person on the team will have a unique personality styIe. They interact with other people and their work. When we combine in teams conflict comes when personalities clash. Harmony comes when those styles are utilized to complement one another. You do not want to have everyone on your team with the same personality. Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each helps to plan the best use of each person to do the task.
Know the strengths of each team member. Each of us have areas of work where we naturally and easily do things and other areas where we struggle. Often we invest great effort to overcome our weaknesses. Researchers have found we are more help to the team when our attention focuses on areas of strength. Then look for someone else to take care of the areas that are weaker. Assign work that allows each person to shine and do her best.
Recognize special gifting. Each member has innate and God-given gifts. Identify them and allow them to flourish within the team.
Identify each member’s unique combination of personality, strengths and gifts using appropriate assessment tools. Researchers have developed and tested many different assessment tools. to help identify and measure these attributes. Find the best ones for your team. Find someone who can guide you to the best ones for your purpose.
Optimize your team by utilizing the complementary skillsets to maximize results. Assign responsibilities to make the most of each team member’s strengths. Then get others to handle the rest of the tasks.
Measure and adjust
Measure the success of your team. Define results that can be measured and track them. When the results are not meeting expectations, make adjustments. Then continue tracking and measuring.
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This edition of Tentmaking Briefs comes from India. Your editor is co-presenting a workshop on Leadership and Team Building. Global Opportunities partnered with GPS Life Journey to present customized training. A company wanting to take their work to a higher level invited us. We designed the training specifically around the company’s needs and management style. If you would like help building your leadership team contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.