There’s a saying: “Teamwork makes the dream work.” And I’d like to suggest that this is true to an extent. Being in a good team may not make all your dreams come true, but it’ll be a dream to be a part of that team. I can attest to this. For nearly 20 years, I led a local church with a small group of leaders. Still, my partnership with my wife was essential to making the machinery of the mission work. There was no way that I could have gotten through those many years of ministry without Kathi at my side.
She is the opposite of me in many ways. I guess the phrase “opposites attract” is evident in our relationship. For example, she can zoom in on the details where I can see the bigger picture. Kathi is most certainly an extrovert and is energised by people. On the other hand, I am an introvert who needs time out from social situations to recuperate. I like to move at pace and hope that people keep up, whereas she will take her time and try to help those that may feel left behind. What’s important to note here is that our personalities are neither “good” nor “bad”. People are different in temperant, capacities, and capabilities. Ultimately a good team complements one another through their various gifts and talents.
My marriage to Kathi, which extended into my work environment for all those years, is one of mutual support and encouragement. One where we fill in where the other is weaker or let the other lead where they are stronger. All of this leads us to be an effective team.
More recently, my work life has led me in a direction I never expected but fully appreciate. In one sense, I’m living out my work-life dream by being able to utilise my passion for technology, media, Christian apologetics and the Church. I have the opportunity right now to combine these things. I create content using social media and other online platforms to help believers engage with Scripture and the words of Christ.
As I started my new employment adventure, I quickly realised that I couldn’t, and didn’t, want to do it alone. However, God had already gone ahead of me. It soon became apparent that my relationship with my good friend David – who had planted a church just before the start of the recent COVID pandemic – was to go beyond just friendship and develop into a working relationship.
As David and I work together, we recognise where we might each lack skills and knowledge. So we’ll happily submit to the other in expertise and wisdom, depending on the issue or subject we need to tackle. In our new working relationship, I have helped David realise some of his dreams, and David is helping me in a similar fashion.
It feels good to be working in an effective team. An effective team is a place where you should be able to express your preference yet accept compromise – a place where you give a little and are able to take a little. An effective team is one where you have the lead at times and over specific tasks but then give up that role when your expertise and knowledge have reached their limits, and you hand over the reins gladly and without resentment.
What might you have to change to be part of an effective team? Do you need to humble yourself and acknowledge the extent of your abilities? Do you need to put yourself in an environment where you must rely on others to succeed? Quite often (admittedly not 100% of the time), our attitude stops us from being part of an effective team and prevents the team from achieving its intended goals. Be honest with yourself and invite others you trust to give you supportive feedback and see where you might need to make changes.
Remember the following verse of Scripture which helps us understand that God never designed us to do things alone: Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. (Ecclesiastes 4:9)