Dr. Rick Sessoms
Leading Teams with Care
Team Dimensions (Part_1)
[00:00:00] So this is about we're talking about roles now and we're talking about two kinds of roles. One is function and the other is what we refer to as team dimension or preference or natural inclination. And so we're you all have access to a tool that we use in this course called the Team Dimensions Profile. And at this point, if you have not taken that, you might want to stop your the recording and go and take that tool itself as self-administered tool, you can you can get it. You should have access and access a code and you can go in and there's a self-administered survey and this will provide this information for you. So if you've not taken that, I encourage you to stop at this point and take it. Assuming that everyone here has taken that now. I'm assuming that everybody's done that. Is that right? Let me let me ask you to take out if you have access to your team dimensions profile, it's you should have received after you hit the send button a report. Did everybody receive a report? Hopefully. And if everything is working right, I think it's about a 21 page report that and if you didn't print it out, that's okay. But you certainly can. And it's a there's some very valuable information in here for you. The when we take a look at it, this team Dimension research and a lot of it shows that people use one or more of these approaches when working on a team in terms of their natural, natural inclination. The combination of these approaches is the four primary dimensions of a team. And as you can see, each letter in the word care is stands for one of the primary dimensions C for creator A for advance or R for refiner and E for executor in one final role in the care profile.
[00:02:29] As the flex or person, the flex or role appears in the center of the circle. This role, the flex or spans the four quadrants and in fairly equal areas. And the reason is the flexors are characterized by their ability to work more naturally in all the dimensions. And we'll get to that as we unpack this, as we go along. Let me just kind of go through these and explain and in summary what these are about, and then we'll go back and look at them in a little bit more detail. First, let's look at the Creator. Few of us fall naturally into only and exclusively one area. And so I want to say as we start that most of us are a we have one dominant area, but we also have a complementary area as well. For example, I when I have taken this team dimensions profile over and over and over again, I consistently come out as a dominant creator, but also significant in significant focus in the dimension of refiner as well. So most of us are a bit of a mixture of more than one approach. Having said that, your profile probably frames you in one dimension more strongly than any of the others. And so that's the one that you want to pay attention to in this conversation, in this discussion. So let me start with a crater. How many here rated highest in the creator dimension. Okay, We've got about 1 to 3 of us. Okay. Let me talk about the crater dimension and those of you that are creators, maybe you can add something to this, because I hope that you've read through this report. But. But let me just make a couple of statements. The the creator on a team is a person who has who has lots of original ideas, has fresh concepts.
[00:04:39] It doesn't mean that we all don't have good ideas from time to time, but creators tend to provide new ideas more consistently than others on the team. They tend to think outside the normal patterns. Some people would say, quote, Outside the box. But they tend to think beyond what is normally thought of by others. They don't tend to perceive risk as very risky. Risk, at least in the thinking, is kind of the way they're wired. And so they kind of enjoy that space of thinking about new things. Now, when we think about creators, I want to suggest that we avoid some stereotypes, particularly those that are not creators created and not necessarily natural leaders. I have known creators that are quite timid and can actually be not perceived as leaders at all. Sometimes that's very unfortunate because their creative ideas don't tend to get as much exposure as they could. If if if good leadership is guiding the team with creators that are not natural leaders. But we often tend I should say it this way sometimes in our own our teams, we tend to think that just because a person has creative ideas, that person is naturally the leader in in our in our Christian circles, we sometimes call that vision. The person is the one with the vision. That person must be the leader. That all isn't always the case. And so I just want to be careful that we don't make those two terms, creator and leader synonymous, because that isn't that isn't always the case. Craters are not odd. They are not eccentric necessarily. Some are, Tim, but. But not. Not all. I work with Tim, so we love each other. And they are not necessarily temperamental, although they can be.
[00:06:48] They are not necessarily the absentminded professor and what are some of the strengths of a creator? Let's talk about that. Their creativity. Okay. Their creative vision. CASTER They can be a vision caster. Yeah. Can you help folks get unstuck? Yeah. Get can get the system unstuck. Sure, Michael. Think of options that others may have overlooked. Right. Right. And they can encourage others to feel free to bring out their ideas as well. That's right. They give a framework for encouraging others. It's good. What else? Those of you that are creators, it's time to brag on yourself. I mentioned a while ago that sometimes creators are not seen as leaders. I was working with a group a few years ago and it was an organization and people of from the international director type person all the way to the receptionist was sitting in the room and they were working on this project. They were working on a project. It was just kind of a case study. They were working on a project that they were trying to figure out how to how to do recyclables in their workspace. You know, this was just the time when there was an emphasis that was being started on not throwing everything away but trying to create recyclable things. And, you know, instead of just throwing everything. And I put people in groups of about five or six, and they started to work on this. And as I did with you a while ago, I sort of moved from one group to another, was listening. And there was one group I remember in my mind's eye, they were over here in the back corner and there were about six of them and there was one director type level person and a couple of middle management type people.
[00:09:13] And there was the part time receptionist in this organization that was sitting there. And these are directors. They sort of took charge of the meeting and they were kind of guiding the way, you know, as they naturally would. And, and everybody was chiming in and nobody really had any ideas. I mean, the truth of the matter, they were just kind of spinning, you know, And then all of a sudden, the part time receptionist, she just kind of raised her hand just kind of quietly, and she just kind of threw a bomb in the middle of the table and came up with a brilliant idea that others had not thought of. And actually that whole organization adopted that idea of recycling. And they've been using it ever since. It was interesting that this part time receptionist had never been asked anything about any idea she had ever had, and she had worked there for something like 11 years as a part time receptionist in this organization. And for the first time, she her creativity, her creative role got exposed. And it was just a wonderful awakening for this organization because, as I said, it's not necessarily the person that is the leader that has all the good ideas, but it takes leadership to expose and pull out those ideas from the creative people that make sense. And so that's why these understanding these roles is so critically important. So let's turn the channel and ask this question. We talked about the strengths. You know, a leader, creative people tend to have fresh perspectives. They tend to see the big picture. They tend to get us unstuck, as we said, all those kind of things. But what can be the weakness of a creator if working by himself or herself? Tammy, you responded quickly.
[00:11:08] So why don't you tell us what you're thinking? I know for me personally, I can say I love coming up, but eventually finding the right is like the right way to move forward. But I am not willing to move and I'm very slow to move until I have exhausted and thought through as many different possibilities and can find what I think is right and best answer so that I can be yourself. Okay, so you are a creator then, but you need to have that assurance that your creative idea is indeed the best idea. Is that what you said? Okay. Well, then that. Yes, that is true. Yes. But is that what you said? That's the question. That's very, very true of me. Oh. You spend all your time creating and not advancing to the reaching the goal you set up to account for. I think in my going out to new ideas. Yeah, I'm having fun. Or some. Or funny. Yeah. Which is like, let's council here I. You know, but I know that in my creative head I'm just at the experience where you really get to like, what works for everybody. Like, there's that magic where that happens, where, you know, you're all is for the win and everybody is into eventually. I know I can get to that, that this place, if I'm not willing to, I'm just slow to move and slowly get to that place. Well, it sounds like to me that you are a creator, but you also have a value for collaboration. There's some people that are creators that really don't have any value for collaboration at all. So that has to do probably with more of your personal value set. And so those are two different issues.
[00:13:01] You follow what I'm saying there. I think that's a good thing. In fact, even though it may be frustrating that you feel somewhat slow in that, but personally, from my perspective, I see that collaborative that that value for collaboration, even though you do have these creative ideas, is a very healthy thing for the teams that you serve. I have a friend of mine who's a creator and he's always generating ideas, and then he said to me that this is the way we need to go. But if you talk for a week later, Oh, that that was so last year. Now, in this direction, you're not talking about me or you. And it's like, how do you know this guy down? There's so many possibilities, so many different ways. And it kind of. Yeah, It's like to help him or to help her to you find Jello on the wall. You know, you never know where it's going because it's always changing as always. So it can be very scattered if it's left, if the creators left to their own devices completely. I know a creator who can sometimes be very excited about their ideas to the point where it's difficult for them to see any sort of problems or holes in their ideas. So what we're really saying is that creators left to themselves can either provide marvelous breakthroughs or horrible train wrecks. Is the fact of the matter. So what we're where we're driving with this is that we need each other. We need the different dimensions on the team. In fact, typically, creators are not good implementers. True, they have good ideas, but they need other folks to take that idea. Very true. So those of you that are creators, have we captured you very well in this conversation? Anything you want to add about your dimension or your natural inclination in this process as a creator? Anything else you'd like to put on the table? Too little or risky to fill the table, but I'm just throwing it out there because, you know, I had no we creators, we don't worry about it.
[00:15:26] Well, it's pretty little personal. I have wondered and kind of wrestled with and I'm still not quite settled on. I think that I have definitely enjoyed the role of creative. I question whether or not and I'm not throwing to throw the woman card out there or whatever, but I I'm wondering if personally my experience has made me feel not embraced the role of the creator, but have found myself actually playing out other roles and maybe throwing out ideas, but just being I'm just throwing that possibility out. So you you're and I appreciate your being vulnerable and it's very, very helpful. Comment your feeling that perhaps because of your gender you have. Withdrawn sometimes from that natural creator tendency and play to other roles as a result. Is that correct? Yeah. And I don't know if that maybe is a little bit of your time at some point, like in my head that that's a leader, you know, like that woman leadership thing you get to make stuff is, is women are trying to become who they are in the church and outside the church and all that stuff. And I just I wondered that about me in terms of. Yeah. Well, and I appreciate you bringing that up. And perhaps I need to say in the strongest terms possible that these dimensions are not gender specific. Full stop. There is no research that suggests that that one gender gravitates more toward one. Now, cultural expectations may. Uh, generate a sense of, of appropriateness. But there is no research that suggests natural tendencies are gravitate because of gender specificity. Right. Thank you for that. Other thoughts? I think as a theory, you really have the ability to inspire other people. But the you know, the difficulty is finding a way to really communicate that vision and get everybody else on board.
[00:17:51] And, you know, sometimes you get really excited, but you have to, you know, kind of paint the picture. Mm hmm. That's a great comment. And that that segways us into the second, because the truth is, is that that's why the team is needed, because sometimes the creators, uh, they, they tend to be on the moon. For the rest of us. Their thoughts seem to be so far out there. And that's part of why the creators need the rest of the team. And that's what we're going to go into in this next, uh, next part.