The apostle Paul describes in Ephesians 4:1-6 and 11-16 how a team or organization works together in a godly and flourishing way. Read the following passage carefully to find the golden nuggets.
I, therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 3 eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.
First, everyone knows clearly his/her calling and purpose in the ministry (v1). Second, their interactions and conservations are seasoned with humility, gentleness, patience, and love (v2). Third, they work out differences and disagreements in an agreeable and peaceful way (v3). Fourth, they are united in faith, and they have an aligned value system (v4-6). Fifth, they apply their talents and gifts to serve one another, and they complement each other in their work (v11-12). Sixth, their relationships are characterized by honesty and love. As a result, they grow professionally and spiritually, and their ministry flourishes (v 13-16).
The above scenario is a high trust working environment (v15). Covey and Merrill (2006) also listed 13 behaviours that build trust among team members.
- Talk straight – speak the truth in love
- Demonstrate respect – the “little” things are the big things and do not attempt to be “efficient” with people
- Create transparency – be open and authentic
- Right wrongs – apologize, make restitution, and extend forgiveness
- Show loyalty – speak about others as if they were present
- Deliver results – neither overpromise nor under deliver. Do not make excuses
- Get better – seek feedback and learn from mistakes
- Confront reality – address the “undiscussable”
- Clarify expectations – this is a 2-way street
- Practice accountability – take responsibilities for results
- Listen first – do not assume
- Keep commitment
- Extend trust – people are capable of being trusted, want to be trusted, and will run with trust when it is extended to them
A godly and flourish team, as described by the apostle Paul, operates in a high trust culture. When trust is high, it is like collecting dividends from an investment. When trust is low, it is like paying tax on investment. Trust is crucial in our relationships with one another. Let us cherish people and build authentic and uplifting relationships in our workplace.
Covey, S.M.R. and Merrill, R.R. (2006). The Speed of Trust. New York: Free Press