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The Dysfunction of Absence of Trust

Feb. 4, 2013By: Evan Burns

Patrick Lencioni outlines dysfunctions of a team in his book, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, and the first dysfunction he outlines is helpful to consider for ministry teams:

Dysfunction 1:  Absence of Trust

Members of teams with absence of trust… (p. 197)

  1.  Conceal their weaknesses and mistakes from one another.
  2.  Hesitate to ask for help or provide constructive feedback.
  3.  Hesitate to offer help outside their own areas of responsibility.
  4.  Jump to conclusions about the intentions and aptitudes of others without attempting to clarify them.
  5.  Fail to recognize and tap into one another’s skills and experiences.
  6.  Waste time and energy managing their behaviors for effect.
  7.  Hold grudges.
  8.  Dread meetings and find reasons to avoid spending time together.

Members of trusting teams… (p. 197)

  1.  Admit their weaknesses and mistakes
  2.  Ask for help.
  3.  Accept questions and input about their areas of responsibility.
  4.  Give one another the benefit of the doubt before arriving at a negative conclusion.
  5.  Take risks in offering feedback and assistance.
  6.  Appreciate and tap into one another’s skills and experiences.
  7.  Focus time and energy on important issues, not politics.
  8.  Offer and accept apologies without hesitation.
  9.  Look forward to meetings and other opportunities to work as a group.


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