Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Speaking the Truth to Each Other

One of my passions is the study and practice of leadership. I have been reading business and leadership books since the early 1980's when, at the recommendation of the leader of the mission I was with at the time, I read In Search of Excellence by Peters and Waterman (which was new at the time and is now considered a classic). I was hooked after that.

What struck me then and has been reinforced by my continued study over the years is the fact that effective leadership and high performing companies are those that adopt and implement biblical precepts. And lest anyone is wondering, I rarely find leadership books that are overtly Christian in orientation very helpful. This is not to say that Christians can't write good leadership books; I just haven't found that many. My favorite author on the subject, Ken Blanchard, is a Christian, but he does not write like one.

But this is all beside the point. The fact is, Christian or not, I have noticed a growing trend in leadership training in recent years that emphasizes such biblical concepts as honesty, integrity, accountability, team building, values-based decision making, and respect. Of course, since all truth is God's truth revealed through His revelation in creation, Scripture and Jesus Christ, it is not surprising that non-Christians should pick up aspects of God's truth.

But it is encouraging to read, as I presently am, books like Bruce Bodaken and Robert Fritz's new book The Managerial Moment of Truth with its emphasis on speaking the truth to each other in an organization; not just as a technique but as a way of life (page 28).

Speaking the truth to each others; what a revolutionary concept. Not hiding behind politics (which Frank Herbert defined as the art of being honest and completely open while concealing as much as possible), not trying to manipulate others to do what they do not want to do, living without the preoccupation of covering ones' tail first, operating with a clean conscience. This type of environment is not what many of us experience, not even in Christian ministries. This is the kind of environment, however, that, by God's grace, I am committed to creating at The Voice of the Martyrs in Canada.

The truth has set you free, Jesus said. So let us live that way in all aspects of our lives.

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