Aligned teams of people expand energy exponentially. We are each analogous to a battery, with lots of potential energy. People’s energy quotient reflects their consciousness and physical vitality. The beauty and benefit of teams is that the energy and health of the individuals involved improves. Psychological needs of safety, belonging (said to be a stronger need than hunger), and influence are met by a well functioning team. As individuals align and work together, tasks and goals are completed (product) and relationships improve (process).
Recently, I attended a meeting of Memphis Uniting at Rhodes College. Frank and Rhonda Broyles initiated our coming together to learn, link, leverage, and lift-up one another in a commonwealth of care for “our beloved Memphis.” They have done similar work in their hometown, Huntsville, Alabama. Rhonda closed the session by talking about the difference between fission and fusion.
She said that fission is the splitting of a large atom into two or more smaller ones. Fusion is the fusing of two or more atoms into a larger one releasing a large amount of energy. Fusion describes the dynamic we experience in human energy exchange. We sense a repelling energy when we encounter an unknown person, but when we push through (using social skills) the initial force field, there is a blending and expansion of energy. This is exactly what happened to me during and after the meeting, when I talked with others, especially Cheryl Beard, Executive Director of Urban Youth Initiative, who sat opposite me. We talked about the opportunity of the merger of Memphis and Shelby County School Systems and that we both sensed the potential positive energy of this time in Memphis. I still get an energy boost thinking of our interaction. We also mentioned the incredible power and understanding built between individuals of different races when we work together. There is an invisible web spun from this connection that pervades our community. It is subtle, but it is there and needs to be acknowledged. Personal knowledge of one another decreases projection and judgement. We see we are much more alike than we are different.
This dynamic of expanded energy has happened to me often in teams and is the reason I am so interested in promoting and working with teams. Teams transform energy in a positive, creative, and healthy way by connecting people and producing change.
I would love to know your thoughts and experiences in similar situations. I will keep you posted on our progress in Memphis Uniting. Tentatively, you could say we are a group of individuals representing diverse cultures and areas of interest who have gathered in hopes of becoming a team that grows connectivity and makes a positive difference in our city.