Thursday, April 06, 2006

Trust: One of Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Trust. It's such a simple concept. Yet rarely do people function in real trust. It's the first of five dysfunctions shared by Patrick M. Lencioni in his book "The Five Dysfunctions of a Team." Without trust, the willingness to be transparent and honest with others, a team will rarely be more than the sum of its parts.

The book lists the five dysfunctions of a team:

Teams are truly cohesive when...
1. They trust one another.
2. They engage in unfiltered conflict around ideas.
3. They commit to decisions and plans of actions.
4. They hold one another accountable for delivering against those plans.
5. They focus on the achievement of collective results.

I wonder how much people really trust each other? Think about it. When was the last time you told someone everything about you? I mean EVERYTHING. See, we all have a problem here. We share almost all the details about ourselves, but stop short for fear of what this person would do with the information. Today, people find it easier to spill their guts in a chat room online than to someone they know. Why? Because of trust.

Having people on your team that you trust is vital to the effectiveness of the team. Without it, a team limps. Team members who hide information, guard their true thoughts, or avoid honest dialog with each other limits what the team can do. Remember the lack of trust between Samson and Delilah? Delilah pretended to love Samson while looking for her own personal gain. Unfortunately, Samson wasn't smart enough to realize it after she took advantage of him four times. Take a look at Delilah's words to Samson, would you trust this girl?

“How can you say you love me when you don’t confide in me?” she whined. “You’ve made fun of me three times now, and you still haven’t told me what makes you so strong!” (Judges 16:15)

When trust is absent on a team, it is extremely difficult to generate trust. Why? No one wants to commit first! Whether it be shear fear or not being able to humble ourselves...we don't make the first move. It's only safe (maybe) after someone else has been transparent or proven themselves trustworthy in small ways. Who will be the first to share about inconsistency in prayer life? How about when our marriage isn't going well?

Who goes first? Until someone goes first, the team resorts to veiled discussions and guarded comments. It's these underground dealings that causes failure in the team (as a whole) to commit to any decision.

Unless I'm willing to be open, honest, and transparent first...why would anyone else want to commit their trust to me? It's most difficult to develop trust with those who have proven themselves untrustworthy.

God, help me take a risk in my trust with others. I especially need Your help when it comes me and others who are untrustworthy. I don't want to give a second chance...but I'm thankful that You are patient. Help me be trustworthy and have integrity in all areas of my life, especially those areas that You know I need improvement. (I'd put them here in my blog, but I don't trust those reading it...but I know You know them.) Help me take resonable risks to develop a similar trust in others that I have in You.

1 comment:

  1. "I wonder how much people really trust each other? Think about it. When was the last time you told someone everything about you? I mean EVERYTHING. See, we all have a problem here. We share almost all the details about ourselves, but stop short for fear of what this person would do with the information. Today, people find it easier to spill their guts in a chat room online than to someone they know. Why? Because of trust."

    My thought.....what would most people's reaction be to someone if they did indeed have this person share everything with them? I am thinking "TMI"....too much information. Many times I have heard people use this term about someone that just shares "too much information". People really do not want all of this info......just the facts!!

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