Effective teams are united by a common goal. But reaching that goal is the real test of the team. Unless a team, as Jim Collins asserts, has the right people sitting in the right seats on the bus, the ministry or organization will likely fall short of its vision. So that raises an important questions–who should be on your team? While a team needs people with unique talents, skill sets, and passions to fulfill its vision, few teams will succeed without the following four people:
1. Innovators – Innovators are rich in idea capital. They bring to the team innovative strategies, creative ideas, and fresh thinking. Innovators keep teams focused on the possibilities and help the organization dream boldly. They color outside the lines, help leaders challenge assumptions, and enable organization’s to break out of ruts of irrelevance.
2. Influencers – While innovators come up with great ideas, they often need somebody else to sell the ideas for them. That’s where influencers come in–they are the leaders. Because leadership is influence, it always takes a leader to influence a group or an entire organization in new directions. And because innovators are usually associated with “change,” it takes a good leader to help others embrace the change that comes with new ideas. Leaders are rich in influence capital.
3. Initiators – Innovating and influencing can only get you so far–somebody has to do the work. Initiators possess a strong work ethic and are not afraid to get their hands dirty. These team members have the extraordinary ability to execute. They can take an idea that an innovator has dreamed and an influencer has sold and turn it into action. Without initiators, every dream would remain nothing more than a dream.
4. Investors – Ideas might be free but implementing them is not. While initiators are the doers, investors are the funders. They provide the finances necessary to make organizational initiatives come true.
These four team members work beautifully together. Innovators come up with ideas. Influencers assess the “sell-a-bility” of those ideas and serve as the leaders that help ideas get traction. That’s when the initiators and investors step up to the plate. They make those ideas become a reality by serving as the work force and the funding source. So who is missing from your team? Some teams have multiple innovators, influencers, initiators, and investors. And many team members fulfill more than one role. The key is to insure each role is well-represented.