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Conflict, ill feelings and team misalignments – unity and harmony issues – no matter what size or situation, must be addressed. They cannot be swept under the carpet or they cannot be wished away no matter how hard you try. They are like a cancer that can seriously impede the success of the team and organisation if left to fester and spread, and you know they will. They must be dealt with and dealt with swiftly.
Can you identify unity and harmony issues within your organisation or the team you lead right now?
What if you could create an environment that promoted unity and harmony to save you from putting out “spot fires” or “out of control burns”? Sound tempting? Read on. I will outline three strategies I have used effectively that I am convicted about to do this.
When I go into new clients, one of the concerns they are dealing with is indeed unity and harmony issues that exist between individuals. It’s only natural as we’re all human, but it’s how we discern and how we address them that are the key to successful leadership, teams and organisations.
For any team or organisation to achieve their Vision, it will not be possible if you do not have unity and if you do not have harmony between people. The effectiveness of individuals and teams will be positively or negatively impacted by the positive or negative relationships that exist between individuals.
How effective are you at discerning when individuals on your team are in negative territory?
How effective are you at discerning tension between members of your team?
Do you have unity and harmony issues within your team or organisation?
If so, what are they?
It is crucial leaders focus on strengthening and growing relationships within their teams to increase trust and to bring about and maintain positive thinking, as this will generate and maintain positive energy. Without positive energy within your team, you won’t get very far; no matter how much pressure you apply.
Do you have positive energy within your team?
Why or why not?
To develop a winning team culture to create and maintain unity and harmony, you need to focus on the heart and spirit of individuals in the team or organisation you lead. Winning teams have unified and harmonious hearts and spirits that are for each other. When the heart and spirit of an individual turns to the negative, it will seriously affect the environment, culture and relationship between individuals.
Unity and harmony is vital for a team or organisations overall success to self-actualise and achieve the Vision. To grow unity and harmony, the heart and spirit in individuals needs to be aligned with trusting relationships, and individuals must be empowered positively to believe in themselves and each other. This is like oxygen for all teams and organisations. Without it, it’s like trying to drag your team forward in high altitudes with no oxygen tanks – very slow and painful going.
There are 3 key initial strategies I implement to strengthen and maintain unity and harmony:
1. The first strategy I use is to identify the different personalities that exist. There are 4 different personalities in any team or organisation as outlined by Florence Littauer – Sanguine, Melancholy, Choleric and Phlegmatic. It is imperative when you are leading people that you understand the type of personalities you have around you because different personalities have different strengths and weaknesses and some personalities connect better with certain personalities than others.
When you can make individuals on a team understand we are all different, that we all have different strengths we can bring to the table to win, you begin the vital process of allowing team members understand one another better and you start to build the unity and harmony between individuals and within your team.
For example, from time to time my wife and I have couples reach out to us that are experiencing minor to major marital issues. Having been married for 28 years this year and 31 years together raising two strong, young men who are 22 and 20, without us understanding our personality strengths and weaknesses, we would not have been able to stay together.
The first thing we do with couples that reach out to us is we do a profile test with them and you can see the scales come off their eyes about what their differences are with their strengths and weaknesses, which leads to greater acceptance of each other and it leads to increasing unity and harmony.
Do you know the different personalities within your team?
Do you know your personality type?
Can I encourage you to take the time to read Florence’s book – ‘Personality Plus’. It will change your leadership, and your personal relationships, dramatically.
The second leadership strategy I employ is knowing the principle Love Languages of each team member. There are 5 Love Languages Gary Chapman identifies where individuals feel valued, respected and loved when the needs of their heart are met. When you identify what each individuals needs are on the team, then individuals align with each other to meet each others needs. This grows unity and harmony in a big way.
When my wife and I have a new couple that has reached out to us due to marital issues they want to resolve, identifying the husband and wife’s Love Languages is a game changer. The same applies for individuals in your team and organisation, I kid you not.
When you combine understanding the Personality Profile of an individual with understanding what their Love Language is, it is rocket fuel and it strengthens and grows unity and harmony between individuals and teams exponentially.
Do you know the Love Languages of your key people you have around you?
Do you know your Love Language?
If you haven’t already done so, do yourself a favour and get yourself a copy of Gary Chapman’s book, ‘The Five Love Languages’. Life and leadership changing.
Another of the leadership strategies I use to bring about unity and harmony is Edification – you can promote anyone but yourself. When you use this leadership process with individuals one on one privately, and then take it to a higher level publicly in front of the team, it seriously strengthens unity and harmony between individuals – between the Leader who utilises the edification to empower the individual, the individual themselves and the team as a whole. It increases loyalty, trust, unity and harmony.
How effective have you been at edifying the key individuals around you and the team as a whole?
Are there opportunities for you to improve in this leadership area?
I have used all the above 3 strategies to grow unity and harmony with my corporate and professional sporting clients with great success. All corporate organisations, sporting teams, families and individuals will strengthen their unity and harmony when the above three principles are deliberately led. It’s not rocket science by any means, but what it does require is deliberate action, a deliberate process and commitment from the leader to implement and drive this within their team and organisation. If you do this, you will reap the rewards.
Effective Leadership is about understanding the deliberate focus of creating a unified and harmonious team. You can’t do anything great on your own and authentic Leaders understand the importance of unity and harmony to achieve the Vision.
“Compatibility is overrated. What’s required is unity. Unity doesn’t mean you’re the same. It means you’re together.” The Gottman Institute.