Mark Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience. Follow Mark on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Want to make High Performance HR Systems including Employee Relations a reality in your organization? Contact Mark and make it happen.
10For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Part of leading people is developing them to be the best they can be, not only in the workplace but within their families and communities as well. Look at your people from a whole person perspective, not just a ‘worker” perspective. Give your people the opportunity to do greatness in their lives and they will do great things for you. Developing your people skills can impact the communities in which they live and in which you do business. Many companies are putting programs in place that help match employees’ interests to volunteer opportunities in the community. Some companies are shutting down for a week and building homes with Habitat for Humanity, for example.
Develop your people not only to be their best at work but their best at home and their communities.
I have often wanted to manage a process where a company would inspire their people by running a contest in which each employee could present why their volunteer organization is the most impactful. The winner would receive a considerable prize to help fund the employee’s efforts. If you are promoting good works by your employees not only in the workplace, but in the world we live in, you are going great things for God, and you are building a “Kingdom Minded” Organization.
Help our community of readers
Do you help your employees help others? How do you find your employees’ strengths and match them to community involvement? We would love to know what it is you have going on.
12Six days do your work, but on the seventh day do not work, so that your ox and your donkey may rest, and so that the slave born in your household and the foreigner living among you may be refreshed.
We, as Christian Business Leaders, have gotten far away from this. We continue our lives and work straight through Sunday. We say things like, “We can’t not work on Sunday; the competition does!” Or, “We have always worked Sundays.” Well, don’t be convinced it is impossible; Chick-Fil-A has been doing it since they first opened! Growing up in Northern New Jersey, all the stores were closed to give employees time to spend with their families. Biblical scholars, pastors, and Bible believers all have their own interpretation of what the Scripture means.
Don’t shoot right through Sunday, without honoring God
I believe that the bottom line is we should honor God at least once a week by spending time relaxing with our families, enjoying the outdoors and partaking in worship. We owe it to ourselves, our families, and, most importantly, God. If you run an organization that honors God by ensuring you honor your employees by not working on Sundays, be blessed in the knowledge that you are building a “Kingdom Minded” Organization.
Help our community of readers
What is your company’s perspective on honoring God? Are there any customs, practices or procedures that you think might make you unique? Let us know and help build our community.
Acts 17: 22–23
Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. So you are ignorant of the very thing you worship—and this is what I am going to proclaim to you.”
Christian business leaders should speak to their people where they are
In this verse, Paul brought himself to where the listener was. He spoke to where “they are.” This is important, because he did not rush into the conversation with judgment and condemnation; he actually praised them for being “very religious.” As the book continues, Paul brings to light what and how they needed to correct themselves. We learn a lot about Paul as a leader. How many times do you as a leader immediately jump to the negative with your people? Why not praise them first when it is appropriate on what it is they are doing right.
So, Christian business leaders, what say you? Do you compliment for effort, but guide your people back to the right direction with grace and peace? If you do, they will perform incredible acts of commitment for you and your organization. If you do, you are building a “Kingdom Minded” Organization.
Help our community of readers
Tell us about a leader that you have admired in the past, what they did to help you develop in the areas that you were weak. What was their approach? Why did you respect them?
1 Chronicles 28:20
David also said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the LORD is finished.
God is bigger than any of the problems you face today. When you accept this, embrace it, and demonstrate this to your employees, the world is your oyster. All too often leaders get bogged down by what they feel are insurmountable odds, but, when you have God on your side, anything is possible! God can make crooked roads straight; He can bring you that big contract in the nick of time, and, with God, all things are possible.
Ask God to support achievement of your plan
So, when you are down and out, look to God for help. Set up a meeting with your key decision makers and subject experts and strategize a plan for achievement to navigate through the tumultuous time you are facing. Most important, memorialize the plan, get buy-in from key stakeholders, and pray over it. Get two or more people to agree on the success of the plan and ask God to support achieving it — ask Him for His guidance, ask Him for patience in you and your Team for the right time for fulfillment. If you bring God into your businesses decisions, no weapon formed against you shall prosper. Include God today and build a “Kingdom Minded” Company.
Help our community of readers
What have you done to include God into your business plans? Have you experienced prosperity by ensuring His inclusion? Please share your abundance stories with us and help encourage our reader community.
What to Do Next
So there you have it. The past few blog postings have given you plenty of ideas on how to integrate your MVV into the culture of your organization through your HR practices. There is a lot to digest, especially if you are not an HR practitioner. Don’t be overwhelmed by the possibilities before you. Simply work out a plan with your Team.
The first step is to create your Mission Vision and Values. Always include your employees in the process. Hire a good facilitator if necessary, but get this done for the sake of your organization.
The second step is to document what HR practices you currently have in place and what practices you still need. This may be a good time to bring in an HR expert to, at minimum, consult with you to help you understand what practices would serve your organization best.
My firm specializes in conducting a thorough examination through a rigorous HR assessment. Contact us today if you are interested in powering your organization to the next levels of performance through the development of HR practices that drive yourMissionand support your Vision in a way that personifies your wonderful Christian values.
Wrapping It All Up
Family-owned companies, as well as non-profits, have a distinct advantage over their secular counterparts. This advantage is the flexibility to state where they are coming from and how and why they are founded, without being accused of proselytizing in the workplace. Simply stating that your organization is “founded on Christian principles” is enough to let the public know where you are coming from and clear the air that you are not requiring your employees to commit to a certain faith’s principles.
We all have choices to make as leaders. We can choose to leave behind a legacy that our families, employees and communities can remember, or we can take an easier route, put our heads down, and reflect the politically correct agenda to which we have all been assimilated. The decision is yours and yours alone. Of course, the Holy Spirit has a lot to do with it, and I am confident that, when you consult with Him, you will choose the right path — the right path to avoid worrying about sharing your faith through your MVV with your employees, community, customers and vendors.
Having met with hundreds of people regarding the process of building Kingdom-Minded organizations, one thing is for certain: many recipients of this are frightened by the thought of sharing the message of Jesus with their employees. They are even frightened at the thought of insinuating that they are believers. I try to comfort them; I try to console them; I pray with them and I pray for them. But, at the end of the day, they need to make the decision for their organizations. They need to decide that the message of Jesus Christ is and will always be first and foremost, ahead of their companies and their own uncertainties.
When I started my HR consulting firm in April of 2011, I, too, had a decision to make. I could take the easy route and mask my purpose under a secular type of business model, content to secretly connect with Christian leaders to help them develop their companies to be Kingdom-Minded, or I could step out in faith and “out” myself as a Christ follower to my world of secular business associates. Having friends and contacts in senior level positions at some of the most politically correct organizations in the world made me understandably somewhat nervous as to how they would perceive the path I had chosen to take. Some of these executives are at such companies as Pepsi, Merck, Kodak, Armstrong, PayChex — the list goes on. Although most of what I do does not fit within these organizations, most of these specific executives have helped by connecting me to Christian-minded business people who could help prosper my business.
Ultimately, I decided to “out” myself, and, since then, I have received incredible, gratifying, heartfelt compliments spanning across my secular business network. What made me decide to go outward and name my firm “In HIS Name HR, Christian Business Consulting” was my reflection upon the passage of Matthew 25:14–30 NIV Edition
His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!”
So, let me ask: if this was your last day and you were to meet God tomorrow, would you feel as if you had shared the message of Jesus with all whom you knew? Are you truly a good and faithful servant? I know that, when that day comes, I want to be able to look in God’s eyes and ask, “Father, was I pleasing? Was I a good and faithful servant?” I want to hear that, yes, I was.
What are you going to hear when you ask?
All successful companies have a Mission. Without a Mission, well, no one will know what it is they are doing and why. Another problem organizations have when absent a Mission is that their customers and vendors often end up confused, having mixed expectations.
I have worked for many companies in my time. Probably more than most, and I consider this to be a good thing. The reason I consider this a good thing is that the experiences that God has given me in these numerous and diverse organizations has made me a far more competent counselor to businesses across the marketplace than if I had occupied one narrow niche for most of my
One common denominator I have identified is that the businesses that are successful all have an established Mission for their organization, a Mission that is co-developed by all of their employees and is ingrained into the culture of the organization. In fact, in high-performing organizations, candidates are exposed to the company’s Mission before they’re even hired. Vendors know theMission and Customers are aware, as well.
When Vendors know the Mission and Customers understand it, that’s enormously positive, but the most powerful and impactful group are your Employees. In my wealth of experience, I have discovered an absolute truth by simply listening to employees for more than 20 years. Fully 99 percent of all employees who come to work every day, want nothing more than to do a good job; in fact, most want to exceed your expectations. It really is the American way. Work hard, play hard and love your life. The problem, though, that many organizations suffer from is a lack of leadership to help steer the organization.
Specifically, they lack leadership in creating a Mission that employees own and strive to achieve.
What is a Mission?
Your Mission is simply what you do best — every day — and why. Your Mission should reflect your customers’ needs. Having a Mission is the foundation of turning the dreams and potential of an organization into reality. So, in a nutshell, your Mission
simply affirms why your organization exists!
So what does a Mission consist of? Well, it really is not rocket science. It is simply what your organization collectively — yes, I said collectively — not top down management, or board of directors to management — developed. It works like this:
- The senior management team develops a framework of what they believe the Mission is and should be.
- Line management then takes the draft document to the line supervision.
- Finally, employees and a good HR rep facilitate a roundtable session using the draft Mission as a guide.
You have a couple of reiterations, meetings back and forth, and then it’s time for “Congratulations!” because you now have a consensus on your Mission. Now, of course, when it is being facilitated, the facilitator must be skilled in getting everyone on board with the final product.
Key is letting your employees know that each one of them has an opportunity to challenge it, provide their personal input and suggest changes, but that, ultimately, when the majority of the employees and management agree to the final document, then it is up to all employees to respect it and support it.
Benefits of Creating or Revisiting Your Mission.
The benefit of creating a Mission or revisiting a current one is that it opens up the communication process inside of your organization. An effective Mission is based on input and commitment from as many people within your organization as possible. A Mission statement should not be an autocratic version of Moses and the Tablets. All of your employees must feel and understand your organization’s Mission. Only then can they make the necessary personal commitment to its spirit.
Tips for great Missions:
- Keep it short.
- Describe WHY customers will buy from you.
- Define your product or service clearly.
- Identify WHO is your ideal customer.
- Specify WHAT you offer your customer — benefits, services, advantages, etc.
- Delineate what makes your product or service different from that of your competition.
Google: “We organize the world‘s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Starbucks: “We inspire and nurture the human spirit — one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.”
Share with us your experiences with your Company’s Mission. How was it created? Who was involved, how would you have changed the process? Is the Mission applicable to you and your coworkers? Share with us and help the community to learn and grow.
In the past several years I have had the honor of meeting with Christian professionals across a variety of states. These professionals are potential clients, business partners, Christian professionals in the radio and television industry, Pastors of small congregations and Pastors of mega Churches as well. Although we are living in historical times in the areas of the housing crisis, stock market collapse, record deficit spending, global conflict, environmental disasters of record proportion and the moral decay of our society, (wow- I know a long list!) I feel a sense of calm from the Christian community.
What is really inspiring is when you take a step back from it, and really look at it with focus, the sense of calmness is causing non-Christians to take notice, because they are being attracted to what they see as the strengthening of our belief.
As I continue to meet with these optimistic business people, one trend tends to stick out. They all remain focused on remaining true to their faith but also feel a stronger obligation because of the current turmoil to express their appreciation of their relationship with God as their stronghold against earthly desires and struggles. We have had trials in our world before. We have experienced wars, the great depression, 9-11, etc. But we have never experienced the overwhelming amount of global change and conflict as we are today. It is so strong many have chosen to not watch the news any longer, many are just tuning out!
The most important thing I find Christian Business owners wanting to do is to be able to reach their people with the faith message without offending them.
I agree this is what many of us are called to do, we just don’t know how and are often scared and intimidated to do so. That is why I am here. I am here to help you through the process, to coach you to encourage you and to develop your Human Resource processes to help you be the company you want to be, not just for you but for God.
So yes dear readers, we are blessed to know the good news. We know God will protect us and carry us through anything that lies ahead. My challenge to you is to do so with encouragement to others around you. Too continue to shine the light for all to see, make people want to be like you for what you have in your heart. Bring more people to the party, many are looking for something because of these times, and you know what to give them.