Team Leaders are Cultural Architects
I recently had the privilege of leading Gallup Strengths Training at Chets Creek Church. Chets is the community of faith that I and my family do life with. While I was with their very healthy ministry leadership team, I was reminded how important our assumptions are. Our assumptions about those we lead determine how we seek to focus their ministry passion and energy.
I have heard Ken Blanchard say, about his wife and ministry partner Margie Blanchard, "she believes everyone comes to work wanting to do their best." If this could become how we all relate to those across our span of leadership influence, it is highly unlikely that we would need to resort to a carrot and stick approach to leadership. It is my experience that an understanding of strengths philosophy and coaching can help us practice leading like Jesus.
Team leaders can create a culture that actually engages the variety of strengths present in those they lead. This is done first, by helping team members become aware of their strengths profile through assessment and coaching. Next, team leaders must allow time for the team to wrestle through the value exchange that is a must in transformation. As values begin to shift, those who lead will need to expect their collaborative processes to morph as the team makes strengths a priority and productive reality.
Team members who are led like this will engage. They will willingly volunteer their passion and creativity to outcomes that advance the team and at the same time bring them real fulfillment. So team leader, part of leading like Jesus is becoming a cultural architect. Start by creating a culture that cultivates and releases what God has put into those you lead. Secondly, call out the best from those you lead. As Marcus Buckingham says, "help people discover their uniqueness and then help them make it useful."
Written by Bob Bumgarner
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