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Communication Strategies

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Individual Reflection Paper I found three meaningful concepts in The Maxwell Leadership Bible. The concept of the Word of God and Jesus as the Word closely relates to communication. The major goal of communication is to transfer information from one individual to another. God was trying to communicate his word to humankind, by his words and then through Jesus. Jesus as the word refers to the Word of God in a physical form. Jesus was sent by God to be a physical evidence of God’s word. He was made human and without sin to show mankind he could have everlasting life if man accepted God’s word. The second concept was the power of words. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit, Proverbs 18:21. This scripture speaks about the power of words. When Jesus spoke, his words were positive, gave life, and were only meant for good.
Words are very powerful and you must always think carefully before you speak. In an organizational setting communication is very important. What you say and how you say it can mean the difference between success and failure. Leaders must know what words to use that will encourage their followers, not discourage them. Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your path, Proverbs 3:5-6. The third concept is prayer. Our own understanding is limited and we tend to make mistakes. We must always pray and seek God's advice when we are confused or troubled. Trust in the Lord with all your heart means never doubt that God loves you and will keep his promises to never leave you. We will all face times when we are confused, frustrated, or just plain tired. These are the times that we need to look to God.

We encountered several issues with communication within our group. Early in the course we as a team had to decide how and when to communicate. Each team member suggested a different form of communication. After reviewing the class syllabus, it was clear that the Discussion Board should be used as the primary means of communication. Information was easily accessible in a central place and it allowed us to keep track of assignments and past discussions. Even though our group decided to use the Discussion Board, not every member liked the decision. This led to a breakdown in communication. There were several times we were not all on the same page. Information regarding assignments had to be shared in different forums repeatedly to ensure all members were kept in the loop. The breakdown in communication also led to some team members feeling like their input or suggestions went unnoticed. This led to hurt feelings and hostility among the members. To be a successful member of a team, you have to compromise when it comes to the needs of the entire team. One member of the team was not willing to be flexible as far as how often we communicated, the form of communication, and the content of the assignments. As a result, there were several struggles. It is critical to the success of the team that all members are able to put “self” aside and make decisions for the good of the team. When working in a team, there will always be conflict. Even when there is conflict, you must maintain a united front. You should be able to have disagreements among team members, but still appear and perform as a cohesive team. When members of our team had disagreements, some team members decided to make it known to the entire class via Discussion Board. I understood that the Discussion Board was the place to discuss issues we had with communication, however, one must always use discretion. This topic should have been addressed in the Team charter. In the future I include the point that “internal disagreements should first be addressed within the group, before being made public”. Part of the team assignment was to communicate with other teams in the class. We did not encounter any problems while interacting with the other teams. Members of our team were in contact with members of teams one and two. We negotiated our proposal and responded to the solicitation letter. The external communication was at times more successful than our internal communication. When writing the Team Charter, we should have been more specific. The expectations were identified, but we should have defined each requirement. The charter stated that team members will be supportive, respectful, and open minded to other member’s views, opinions and suggestions. When I prepare a team charter for my next course, I will be more specific. For example, I won’t just include the phrase “team members must be respectful”, I will include several examples. Also, whenever the charter is not followed, clear consequences will be imposed. To avoid a breakdown in communication and form a cohesive team in the future, I would recommend a more detailed team charter. The charter must list very specific guidelines for team membership, participation requirements, and consequences if the charter is not followed. One of the aspects of this course that I found most valuable was the weekly discussion board. Each week we discussed communication within our group and provided a scripture that motivated us through the week. I looked to the Discussion Board for support and guidance. I used the input of other classmates to learn about communication.

References zzzzzzz ======Reference placeholder, don't delete====== zzzzzz
The Maxwell Leadership Bible, John C. Maxwell

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