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Virtual Team Spirit

How do you build a team in a digital world? At my company, Prayables, we’re placing a lot of ads on Craigslist to attract talented people. We have action calls on our Web site and we created sidebar ads in Facebook. We’ve been blessed so far. It seems like every time I open my Gmail, I can see another amazing individual who is waiting in the fonts of my e-mails to come to life. It’s almost like I’m Major Nelson opening the bottle and Jeannie materializes in a colored smoky cloud.

We work virtually at Prayables. The set-up is truly the new paradigm in officing. I pay “rent” to Comcast for my Internet connection, Skype and Team Viewer generously provide the “utilities” for free. With this style of telecommuting we’re able to reach out to stay-at-home moms, folks without reliable transportation, and people who have disabilities that make it hard for them to find traditional employment. I wish I could hire each and every person who applies for work and make them a part of the team. But, some are not qualified, many are merely competent, and only a few have what it takes to change hearts and minds through prayer.

How do you build team spirit? With a webmaster in Chicago, editor in Pittsburgh, and writers from coast-to-coast, you’d think it would be a challenge to enjoy the camaraderie of workmates who don’t get to see family pictures on your desk or overhear a personal conversation that creeps into the workday. Not so.

We’re kibitzing through Facebook, emails, and the comments on the Web site. We’re living our mission with every keystroke; we take action with the written word of prayer.

I struggle to be a good leader. Although I read all the books, and I’ve had plenty of practice as an employer and as an employee, I’m still surprised at the complexity of team management. So many demanding situations, so many different personalities and too few precious hours in the day to deal with it all. And yet, through it all—I remain encouraged and energized. I’m thrilled when I’m on our Web site and I see a comment from a visitor who discovered a prayer; The Tail End of Hope and wrote, “Thank you for this prayer. I needed it today.” I am elated. It’s working. We are uplifting the spirit of women and we have done our job.

Enjoy this prayer about being grateful for a good job and a good team.

The Right Job
Thank You for giving me a job
I love and one I can do well in.
Thank You for the committed people
who work beside me.
Bless us with a spirit of harmony
and unshakeable work ethic.
May all that we put our hands and minds to earn us respect.
May the way we conduct ourselves represent You well.

—Ruth Williams