Rules of Engagement

Team D. It’s the group of people I get to serve, lead, and work with every day. Some of us are thinkers; others are feelers. Most are verbal processors; others are internal processors. A few of us engage debate as sport; others avoid conflict at just about any cost.  It’s a circus. Actually, one of my teammates came to us from the circus. Literally. Anyway…

We don’t want the loudest idea to win; we want the best idea to win. If one person on the team wins and another loses…all of us lose.

For our team meetings, we collectively developed some rules of engagement to ensure that we talk with one anther, dream with one another, and fight with one another well. Here’s what we came up with:

We are charged with creating community and making disciples at National Community Church. This charge is a reflection of the Great Commission: Go make disciples of all nations. If we miss this target, we fail to live out our calling in our generation and we fail to serve our church well. We must be Biblical, intentional, thought-full, prayerful and creative. This isn’t about us as individuals. It’s about the Kingdom of God. It’s not about our preferences or opinions, it’s about making disciples.

As we see throughout the story of the Bible and the Church, God uses people of differing perspectives and opinions to accomplish goals that are much bigger than they are. The way ahead is often found in the tension. We choose to embrace that tension with humble confidence in order to discover how God wants to work in us and through us in this season at NCC.

We choose to promote, protect, and abide by these rules of engagement:

Prioritize Positivity. Make the first response positive.

Honesty and Honor
Engage issues critically; engage people positively. If you don’t like an idea, say that and say why you don’t like it. But honor the person. Use discretion- bring up the right topics in the right environment and the right time.

Differentiating Debate and Decision
Disagree in Debate; Commit on Decisions. This also means that Heather identifies which hat she is wearing when appropriate and/or needed.

Everyone has an opinion. Everyone has a voice. And everyone is required to participate. But at the end of the day, the name on the front of your jersey is more important than the name on the back. It’s not about one person winning and one person losing. It’s about winning as a team.

…and humor. It doesn’t need to be listed as a rule. It’s just going to happen. We embrace that.

January 18, 2013 [ Tags: , ] 4 Comments

4 Responses to Rules of Engagement

  1. Rob says:

    This is really great. I loved your framing of these questions.

    I especially responded to the idea of making the first response positive. I often struggle with cynicism and skepticism, but I can try to do this. Even if I can’t help but criticize, this I can do. I can make my first response positive.

  2. Heather, such great reminders! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Andrew Mason says:

    Heather these are insightful keys for collaboration, thanks for sharing! I read a unique book on this: The Contrarian’s Guide to Leadership by Steven B. Sample. He’s got a chapter titled, “Thinking Gray, And Free,” that your team would probably benefit from.
    That positivity principle is so crucial for brainstorming to breathe. Great stuff!

  4. zlewy brenor says:

    Wow, awesome blog layout! How long have you been blogging for?
    you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your website
    is great, let alone the content!

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