Humility in the marketplace

 For, by the grace given me, I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment according to the faith God has distributed to each of you.  Romans 12:3

I was surprised and happy to read in Jim Collin’s book Good to Great that humility has a place in the marketplace.  He observes that humility was one of the characteristics of the top leaders that he calls Level 5 leaders. It showed me how universal this virtue is.  These leaders pointed to those under them as the key to their success. They did not act as they had all the answers but surrounded themselves with those who did have the answers. It is also likely they succeeded because they were not posturing for attention. Therefore, they could keep their minds on what they had to do Chramastaic leaders may b cast vision but often lack the knowledge to execute that vision because they are looking forward. 

In some cases, it can be a cover for lack of skill. As Christians,  we know how dangerous it is to worship others. Charismatic leaders can encourage that. I have seen that with pastors. The church does not know how to move on once that pastor leaves. Jesus purposely avoided the cult of personality because he knew how fickle human hearts are.   One week they laid palm branches in front of them. The other he was crucified. If Jesus were running a company, he'd invest a lot in his employees and executives like he did with his disciples. Likewise, intelligent managers will take their ego out of the picture and teach others how to lead and invest in the next generation.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves...Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. (Romans 12:9-10,15)

Since everyone is working towards the same goal, the manager should let them are the same side. A good manager allows another to share in the success by praising good work. Criticism should be given with a genuine desire to help rather than out of spite. I know from my experience I am more receptive to criticism when I feel that it is done with my welfare in mind, even  I  feel uncomfortable. It should be done privately to preserve morale. 

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. (Romans 12:16)

A manager should take good ideas no matter where they come from. Unfourantely, salary does not necessarily correlate with a contribution.  In a large company, frontline employees often know more about what is going on day to day than senior management. They create class warfare but loading themselves with perks while ignoring the frontline worker. This is the source of many union-management clashes. 

Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, in Christ, we, who are many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. (Romans 12:4-5 )

If managers saw their employees and company as a body, I think it would change \  their management style.  They would consider lay off, especially as top performers, as a last resort. They would create highly motivating work environments that would encourage risk-taking. There would be fewer turf wars and less internal politics because they would see everyone as potential contributors( Maybe I am idealistic with this one). Consultancy Booz and Allen Hamilton wrote a paper about grouping each level of workers according to their contributions r It is ironic that the word corporation comes from the Latin word for body. What if people at every level saw themselves accomplishing the same purpose? It would undoubtedly calm over-inflated egos on every side  Mangers would see those under them, not as money pits but cash cows. Human resources are the most important assets because they make all other productive. 


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