May 032016

No PatiencePatience and the business of managing a successful organization are clearly incompatible. Here’s why:

First, rapidly changing markets make the pace of many businesses nearly frenetic compared to just a couple of decades ago. One of the newest buzzwords is the need to be nimble, rapidly defining and responding to new challenges. Mark Sanborn states, “Your success in life isn’t based on your ability to simply change. It is based on your ability to change faster than your competition, customers and business.”  Patience equals slow, and slow can result in loss of market share or even the loss of the entire organization!

Second,  in the workplace, social factors often get in the way of progress. What’s popular over what’s policy. Without strict and consistent adherence to a company’s policies, anarchy results. Or at least confusion and variability in performance. Being patient, accepting intent rather than conformity, allowing staff to follow the principle rather than the “letter” of the policy, this can breed apathy at best, contempt at worst.

Last,  it is critical to keep a bottom line mentality at all times. Exhibiting patience with variability in performance suggests a higher priority on human resources than profit margins. This is clearly a lose-lose proposition, for without margin, everyone loses! Firmly keeping an eye on key metrics that are indicators of success is critical. Getting distracted by the individual and changing needs of staff causes a loss of focus and inevitable failure. It confuses the definition of where real value lies.

My pastor gave me much to think on with his sermon this past weekend.  The topic? God’s great patience with us. It made me wonder…why is He so patient with us? Doesn’t He have a bottom line, an ultimate objective? Was there anything in the sermon that has any relevance to me as a leader in the workplace? Regardless of your particular faith walk, I’d like to hazard a big, fat YES!

If you agree, then take my three reasons listed above, and use your creative powers to turn them on their heads. Is patience and the work of work wholly incompatible?  Is patience contraindicated in the office? I think….NOT.

Aug 182010

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience
While I’m waiting
I will serve You
While I’m waiting
I will worship
While I’m waiting
I will not faint
I’ll be running the race
Even while I wait

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it’s not easy
But faithfully, I will wait

These powerful words by contemporary Christian artist, John Waller, are shared in a very meaningful and moving way in the movie Fireproof, where the leading character learns about doing the right thing, moving forward in obedience even when those actions are seemingly unappreciated and unrewarded.

Paul says in 1 Corinthians 9,

“I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.”” Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.”

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9

My parent’s generation looked for Jesus’ soon return, assuming that He would come long before they had families of their own. But here we are, two generations later, still waiting.

Are you asking God to change circumstances or people in your life? Are you on standby, waiting to do and act until He fixes everything? I challenge you to strongly move forward in obedience today, serving, worshiping, running while you wait for God to work in your life. Serve Him today by serving those around you. Worship Him today by making an offering of how you live this day. Run the race of the day today with excellence while you wait……

8/15/10 shared during a celebration for my parents as they reach fifty years of married life.  God bless you, Mom and Dad! You are Jesus’ hands and feet to me, my family and to so many around you.  Serving and worshipping faithfully while you wait!

adapted from what was shared in the workplace 3/16/09

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