Friday, December 4, 2009

Four Simple "Shared" Ideas for Building Community

I'm into simple and concise ideas about leadership.

This even applies to more complex leadership challenges like community building where I have written previously on simple concepts for community building. For example:

Building Community - Trust Begets Trust
Cites the work of Kouzes and Posner in The Leadership Challenge where the authors identify trust as a foundation for community and teamwork.

Building Community: Thank you as a way of leading
Proposes gratitude as an easy and remarkably powerful step in building the type of community that is essential for successful teams.

Building Community with Giving
Suggests that giving and service are key ingredients to building community across teams.

Becky Robinson at the Mountain State University LeaderTalk recently posted four simple ideas for community building. Her ideas were both "simple" and accessible.

Here are her four points along with my comments and links to my previous posts:

Shared relationships. People feel part of a community when they are well connected in relationships... leaders facilitate this interconnectedness. The more people are interconnected, the more likely they are to have a sense of community.

Get to know the people around you. To me, it starts with knowing about their families and names of spouses and children; it allows you to connect quickly.

Sustain the interconnectedness with smiles and gratitude.

Shared experiences. When people participate in activities together, collaborating as a whole or working in small groups, relationships have a chance to grow. Even after the activity is over, shared memories with others can contribute to a sense of community.

Draw people into your plans and tasks. Collaboration doesn't have to be hard. But is starts best with questions and listening; not telling. Also, let's dispel the myths that collaboration takes longer or suggests that a leader is soft or weak.

Shared goals and purpose. As people rally around a shared cause or goal, a sense of community builds. People feel emboldened by others who are working toward the same purpose.

I have previously cited the work of Kouzes and Posner who describe the importance of a shared vision across a team or organization. They suggest in their work, "Remember that leadership is a dialogue, not a monologue.... it's about developing a shared sense of destiny. "

Shared achievement. People enjoy being a part of something bigger than themselves, knowing that their contribution makes a difference. Leaders who recognize a groups' effort build community.

I feel that celebration should be an important element of the gratitude shown by an organization. As I have written before Gratitude is Transformational.

Becky's community building list is a perfect way to remind leaders that building community doesn't have to be hard.

Thanks for David Zinger for his Tweet that shared this nice list.

Thanks for reading. Please lead quietly. Don

Posted via web from Intersectable

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