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Working in Community

This statement expresses core values for Wheaton College employees, in support of our Complementary Strategic Priority to Nurture Vibrant Christian Community.

As faculty and staff in a Christian educational community, we seek an environment characterized by God-honoring work and workplace relationships. To foster this Christ-centered community, we strive to embody the values of teamwork and collegiality, unity and diversity, listening and communication, the nurturing of expertise and learning, and careful stewardship and accountability as defined below and supported by Scripture. These values are intended to provide a spiritual and professional context for policies and details found in other places (e.g. the employee and/or faculty handbook, job descriptions, etc.).

Working in Community complements the Community Covenant and builds on its foundational principles of Christian community with a distinct emphasis on work standards and relationships. While this only directly applies to the employees of Wheaton College, it is also our desire to model Christ-centered community to our students, contractors, vendors and other visitors that we interact with during the course of our work.

Teamwork and Collegiality

We recognize that we are one community working toward the mission of Wheaton College. We work cooperatively to achieve shared goals and are committed to the overall team objectives and performance of individual duties rather than the pursuit of personal interests. This collegiality is based on trusted relationships and an authentic community of grace.

To support this we:

  • Acknowledge the shared accountability of our work together toward a common goal.
  • Understand how our work fits into the mission of Wheaton College and goals of our department.
  • Foster collaboration and development of strong, trusting relationships by soliciting and integrating the input of others.
  • Facilitate productivity and model teamwork within individual teams and throughout the College.
  • Proactively share relevant information within and outside our departments.

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another” (Proverbs 27:17).

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:2-3).

Unity and Diversity

We believe that each part of the Wheaton College community is needed to do our work well. We strive for unity in Christ but recognize that differences of age and gender, race and ethnicity, status and position, as well as denominational diversity, can easily be the basis for conflict and divisions within a community of believers and society generally. We aim to create a workplace that shows respect for all individuals and their respective roles, acknowledges and values differences, and is a welcoming place for all.

To support this we:

  • Show respect for individuals and our differences.
  • Understand and appreciate the perspectives of others.
  • Affirm the God given gifts and contributions made by each individual.
  • Recognize the value of each department at the College.
  • Strive to be collaborative and inclusive, seeking out perspectives and viewpoints different from our own.

“God created human beings in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27).

“Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God” (Romans 15:7).

Listening and Communication

We realize, as individual members of a community, that our words and actions can be an opportunity for growth and grace or cause harm. We strive for effective communication that is clear, focused and respectful.

To support this we:

  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both verbally and in writing.
  • Respond in a timely and professional manner that is appropriate to the concern.
  • Demonstrate active listening skills, asking questions to ensure understanding.
  • Are constructive and positive in our communication style, resisting complaining and focusing on encouragement.
  • Are direct and honest, speaking the truth in kindness and love.
  • Address conflict in a timely and appropriate manner, dealing directly with the individual(s) involved whenever possible.

“The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy” (Proverbs 12:22).

“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).

Expertise and Learning

We value lifelong learning and the insight we gain from each person around us. This professional growth is nurtured through an intentional focus on development of ourselves and others for excellent work to the glory of God.

To support this we:

  • Actively develop and maintain skills required to perform our roles effectively through training and other professional development.
  • Are open to new perspectives and approaches; maintain a teachable spirit.
  • Seek out and actively apply feedback in open and honest ways.
  • Provide honest feedback to others, when appropriate.

“Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance” (Proverbs 1:5).

“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32).

Stewardship and Accountability

We have been entrusted with resources to accomplish the mission of the College and take personal responsibility, using discretion and sound judgment, to carefully steward these resources.

To support this we:

  • Maintain high standards for quality by setting clear goals, monitoring progress and achieving results.
  • Use effective time management and organizational skills.
  • Follow college financial policies and procedures.
  • Continuously seek to improve systems and processes.
  • Are accountable for our work and understanding the impact of our work on others, putting their needs above our own

“The earth is the LORD’S, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it” (Psalm 24:1).

“Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful” (I Corinthians 4:2).