July 13, 2024
Teaming, Team Leadership

The Basketball Team on the Mission Field

This entry is part 3 of 7 in the series Types of mission teamsIn our last post, we talked about the three main types of teams found in our mission organization. Now I would like to discuss each of these three types in more detail. Basketball teams work closely together and interact frequently with each other about their various ministries. Planning must be done as a team because most of the key ministries involve more than one person on the team, and each ministry role is interconnected with what other team members are doing. Biblical examples of this type of a team would be Jesus with his disciples and Paul with his missionary band of Silas, Timothy, Luke, and others at various times.   These ministry teams did ministry and life together, side-by-side experiencing both the joys and hardships of proclaiming the good news.… Read the whole post
Teaming, Team Leadership

The Track Team on the Mission Field

This entry is part 4 of 7 in the series Types of mission teamsIn a previous post, we talked about the three main types of teams found in our mission organization.   When new missionaries think about teaming, they are generally thinking about what we have called a basketball team.  Basketball teams work together closely and interact frequently with each other about their various ministries. But many of our mission teams are more like track teams than basketball teams.   Track teams have a common purpose and team members support one another, but each person on the team works independently. They generally do not do ministry together.  For many of our track teams, each team member works in a different church, a different ministry project, or even in a different town.  While they are geographically close enough to one another to make it feasible to meet together regularly, team meetings are relatively… Read the whole post
Teaming, Team Leadership

X-teams on the Mission Field

This entry is part 5 of 7 in the series Types of mission teamsPart 5 on a series about teaming on the mission field.   In a previous post, we talked about the three main types of teams found in our mission organization. When new missionaries think about teaming, they are generally thinking about what we have called a basketball team. Basketball teams work together closely and interact frequently with each other about their various ministries.   But many of our mission teams are more like track teams than basketball teams. Track teams have a common purpose and team members support one another, but each person on the team works independently. But there is yet a third type of team that is commonly found on the mission field.   We call this an X-team or an expedition team.    X-Teams have at least two members, a guide and an explorer.  We think of expedition… Read the whole post
Teaming, Team Leadership

Combo Teams

This entry is part 6 of 7 in the series Types of mission teams A number of years ago in this blog, I wrote about three different types of teams that we find in our mission organization.1I am indebted to Liz Givens who first identified these three different types of teams in SEND. Basketball teams are made up of multiple team members, working together closely and interacting frequently with each other about their various ministries. Track teams have a common purpose and team members support one another, but each person on the team works independently. X-Teams (expedition teams) are small teams found where a single expatriate missionary (or missionary couple) and a national Christian worker (pastor, missionary, or a lay Christian) partner together closely in ministry. A fourth type – combo teams But after discussing these different types with our teams around the world, I began to realize that there was yet a… Read the whole post
Leadership, Lifelong Learning, Book Reviews, Cultural learning

What makes an organizational culture effective?

Cross-cultural workers spend a lot of time thinking about, discussing, and examining cultures. Ethnography is a foundational skill for missionaries. But I have found that we are much less adept at understanding and describing organizational cultures, even the cultures of the organizations in which we serve. What does an effective organizational culture look like? What kind of organizational culture would lead to greater fruitfulness and well-being of our members? Even more mysterious is how leaders can nurture the organizational culture they would like to prevail. Or can we even change or develop our organizational culture? I have just finished “The Culture Code: The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups” by Daniel Coyle. I believe that this book begins to answer some of these questions, at least for me. Coyle set out to discover the reasons why some groups, teams, or organizations accomplish far more than what we would expect of them… Read the whole post
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