The spiritual forecast for our world is rather cloudy.
Yet, regardless of the leader of your country, you’re still a leader in your company. The spiritual forecast for the world depends on you, and it starts in your business.
I was in India for a mission trip in 2009 and I was as sick as a dog. The long train ride to Nepal from Delhi was one where the clickety clack of the train coupled with the food I was not used to just about did me in. I ended up in a little tiny train bathroom turning green with people shaking the door trying to get in since I’d been there so long. Enough said.
I believe what people say. More than that, I believe the attitudes they express knowingly or unknowingly. When I enter an organization, I pay close attention to what managers say, and I have learned some of the telltale messages of managers who aren’t leading anyone anywhere. Among the worst messages are those that shut down communication. When communication is blocked, trust erodes and decisions go uninformed. After that, little else matters.
The Bible says that with God, all things are possible. But, as Christian leaders we must establish goals that are first vetted with Him. “Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty” (Proverbs 21:5, ESV). So, make sure you follow the lead of the Holy Spirit in identifying the right goals, objectives, strategies, and tactics to fulfill the path that God has ordained for you (Proverbs 3:5-6) and to “press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14).
What are you going to say when the prospect asks, “Why should I buy from you?”
Oh, it is going to happen to you. You best be prepared for the question and you most definitely must be prepared for your answer.
Several years ago, when I was with the Zig Ziglar Corporation, the account executive, Margaret and I were conducting a phone call with a prospect in Atlanta. Margaret had interacted with the prospect a few times and I was asked to help close the training engagement.
I was privileged to contribute a chapter to the book "The Selfless Leader," available at no cost here. Rather than toot my horn as one of the contributors, I'd rather point you to the words of the editor, Scott Rodin of the Steward's Journey, who blogs here.
"Perhaps the best way I can try to define a Selfless Leader is to contrast it with its opposite. Could we say that the converse of a self-less leader is a self-more leader? Put another way, does becoming a selfless leader require us to set aside our desires to want more of our self as the focus of our leadership?
Interesting question and what difference does it make?
Many, many years ago Peter Drucker, considered the Father of Modern Management, recognized the shift from work done and perfected by repetition, skills through training, and quantifiable measurement to the "knowledge worker". Knowledge workers use their education, experience, and subject matter expertise to define alternative courses of action, make decisions, and take responsibilities for outcomes and expected contributions - much like executives do.
Leadership, in my view, consists of the merger of heart and science (in that order). Leadership in God’s Kingdom is learned, driven by character, and operated with excellence.
Heart generates vision statements, mission statements and values developed in relationship with the Holy Spirit living in and through us.
Time is your most important scarce resource. Does anyone have enough time in this information overload age? Gadgets are blasting us—tempting us with “news” stories that we all too often chase down with regret. TVs give too many options, yet people still lament there is nothing to watch. T.S. Eliot had it right decades ago when he wrote, “Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?”. People have way too much information and way too little of what they really need—wisdom, and the focus to implement it. There is urgency all around in a world that needs importance.
There are numerous examples in the Bible about pride and its consequences in the lives of leaders and followers. And, having worked over the years with hundreds of leaders, and having interviewed over 5,000 of them, I have seen so many leaders like those in the Bible. I have witnessed their disgrace, as written in Proverbs 11: 2 (ESV); “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble wisdom.” In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis wrote, “Pride leads to every other vice; it is the complete anti-God state of mind.” And pride prevents you from serving God.