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STEWARDSHIP LEARNING ACTIVITIES

Activity 1: Coalition Building

Instructions. Building a collaborative work culture is all-important in forming a stewardship community. Stewardship is based on the success inner leaders have in persuading diverse, often conflicting, stakeholders to agree on a common agenda and a common pattern of behavioral interaction.

Dynamic stewardship organizations use closely knit coalitions to achieve desired results. These coalitions are, by definition, made up of people from different functions, levels, backgrounds, and biases; and the members may have agendas and commitments that, initially at least, are at odds with one another. While these differences make such stewardship structures one of the best sources of innovation and breakthrough, they can also be, and often are, the source of dysfunction and failure. The challenge in building a stewardship coalition is to insure the former result (Bennis, 1999).

The first step in building a coalition is to decide who should participate. The individuals and groups that get involved should, potentially, support what you are trying to do. They should also represent the range of characteristics and attributes you need to ensure that you achieve your goal.

  1. Think about your present work community—team, unit, division. Evaluate each member individually against the following characteristics needed in any stewardship work community.

    Characteristics of Key People in Coalitions

    Styles

    Power

    Information

    Competencies

    Representation

    Thinking

    Authority

    Needs

    Technical

    Functions

    Communication

    Charisma

    Capabilities

    Interpersonal

    Business Units

    Work

    Relationships

    Benchmarks

    Special Experience

    Customers

    Leadership

    Credibility

    Data

    Management

    Suppliers

  2. What attributes does each individual coworker possess that would qualify him or her to be immediately effective in helping to form a stewardship structure in your work community? ( Note: It is not essential that each person possess all of these characteristics, only that the work community collectively possess these capacities for success.)

  3. Evaluate your present status:

    • Who among your followers will be most helpful in initial stages of development?

    • Who will be least helpful?

    • Where are the most significant gaps in needed capacities in your work community?

    • What steps might you take to fill these gaps? Training? New hires? Other?

  4. What is your assessment for the current readiness of your work community for stewardship?

  5. Prepare an outline plan to implement a stewardship structure in your work community considering this evaluation and other information you have about the details of your present work situation.

  6. Consider sharing this plan with your colleagues and your boss.


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