For a team or organization to achieve their vision and mission, they must have unity on their team. The art of doing team well, involves individuals coming together and working together as one unit, rather than as individuals. Healthy teams require individuals to give and take while maintaining individual opinions and values.
To create unity, we as individuals must do our best to understand the personality, strengths, giftings, and motivations of others. Often conflict arises when others do or say things differently than we would. One of the first steps to getting along with others is to seek to understand their perspective and point of view.
“If I were to summarize in one sentence the single most important principle I have learned in the field of interpersonal relations, it would be this: Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” Dr. Stephen R. Covey
3 Keys to Maintaining Unity on Your Team by Seeking to Understand One Another
Have each member of the team complete a Spiritual Gifts Test.
Once each member has completed the Spiritual Gifts Test, spend a subsequent meeting going over the results focussing on the following questions:
- How might your top 3-4 giftings work well on this team?
- How might your top 3-4 gifts be misunderstood by others on this team?
- If your top gifts become unbalanced, how might each contribute to disunity?
- What would you like others to know about how you perceive your top 3-4 giftings?
Have a discussion around how you could honor each team member during the upcoming year.
For some, it may be acknowledging their birthday. For others, it may be honoring a job well done. For some, it may be acknowledging a difficult anniversary of a loss etc. Find out what is important to each team member and then plan to honor each in the way that is meaningful to them.
Have each member complete a personality inventory.
My favorite personality inventory is called “The Flag Page”.
There is a small fee for completing The Flag Page inventory, but I have found it well worth the cost. It has been more insightful for me than any other personality inventory l have completed. The Flag Page highlights your top motivations, shows you where you will succeed and why. Instead of thinking what’s wrong with you, the Flag Page shows what’s right about you.
I encourage you to have each team member complete The Flag Page inventory and print their results. Then have a discussion where each team member gets to explain their results, name their top 5 motivations and what this information means to them personally.
Next, I encourage you to spend time with your team in prayer:
- affirm one another in his/her top strengths and motivations
- ask God to strengthen each team member to know how to bring his/her strengths to the team
- pray for each team member to encourage the unity of the team by seeking to understand one another
Maintaining unity among a team may be challenging at times, but the strength of the team far outweighs the strength of one.
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