Our team at Church Fuel has grown from two to seven people over the last year. Our Content Director is in Atlanta; our customer care specialist is in Ohio. Marketing happens from Boston and my admin assistant lives in Phoenix.
Your team is more important than you programs, processes, or ministries, because without people, none of these things would exist. And when it comes to your team, a healthy culture is really the most important thing you can have.
Here are five words that come to mind when thinking about team culture.
#1 – Clarity
Every time we add someone to the team, we add another hub of communication and actually make things more difficult. That's why continually fighting for clarity is so important.
Everyone needs to know what the team is doing, how they fit, what’s most important in their role and what matters most. This doesn’t happen by accident. Quite the contrary. People drift toward complexity, not clarity.
That’s why we call the senior pastor the Chief Clarity officer and create tools to help you get clarity and alignment.
Does everyone on our team know what matters most, what's most important now, and exactly how they fit?
We're not going to get better by doing things over and over. That's how you get in a rut. For us to be great, we have to have a culture where we routinely take a look at what's working, what's not working, and how we can be better.
A healthy team culture is one where people can share their opinions, not based on personal preference, but on effectiveness of mission. Great team members don’t just accept feedback, they crave it.
Is your team honest with you and with each other, especially on issues that lie beneath the surface?
#3 – Accountability
Every organization needs to know who is responsible for what. This is so much more than an org chart. Our friend JR Lee says, “When you turn a blind eye to something not up to standard – you just created a lower standard.”
A good team is accountable to each other. Not a top down, honor, fear thing. But a community of accountability. If we all believe what we are doing matters, we want people in our lives to make sure we’re staying on track.
Is there a spirit of accountability among the team, meaning that it's not okay to miss things or do less than our best?
#4 – Trust
For there to be a healthy team culture, we all have to trust each other. That means we must have confidence that when someone says they will do something, it's as good as done. I can take it off my plate and off my mind if I know it's on yours.
But trust goes deeper than accountability, I have to trust you as a person. You earn trust by being trustworthy.
Does your team know you are for them not just in favor of what they do?
#5 – Purpose
Team unity comes from working together on a cause that's important – not just a list of responsibilities on a sheet of paper, but a deep sense of purpose. We believe in what we’re doing at Church Fuel. And you believe in what you’re doing in your church.
If there’s a deep sense of purpose, teams can overcome many challenges. Without a guiding purpose, your team will become a turf war.
Does your team care for the entire organization more than their individual area of responsibility?
If you want to know more about building a healthy team culture, download this free resource. It’s called the Senior Pastor’s Guide to Leading a Staff. It will give you some practical ideas to implement in your church and with your staff.