More Tweetables here.
More Tweetables here.
Another day. Another multi-billion banking scandal. Another Bank Chairman and Chief Executive do a “Pilate” (or attempt to). Another bunch of junior staff prepare to be sacrificed as scapegoats.
But as financial analysts around the world have observed, although banking executives are now too “clever” to leave a paper trail between themselves and corrupt practices, they know very well how to communicate their instructions by nudges, winks, “pressure from above,” and sales targets that cannot be reached using lawful means.
In stark though pleasant contrast, the Harvard Business Review recently interviewed the global controller of a professional services firm employing 40,000 people. He’d just been assessed by his manager, peers, and direct reports, and reached the elusive 90th percentile mark for honesty and integrity. Given the numerous temptations and possible trade-offs that accompany such a position, HBR asked him his secret:
“It all starts with my boss and his boss,” he replied. “If there is a line for honesty and integrity, they don’t want to be close to it. Instead, they insist there be nothing questionable with any transaction. If there is a liberal interpretation of an accounting principle, they will always take the conservative route. It’s never hard for me to insist on unquestionable honesty, because they set the bar.”
That aligned with HBR’s own statistical “Honesty & Integrity Survey” of 5268 leaders in five different organizations. The graph below shows the highest (red) and lowest-rated (green) organizations, together with the average of all five (blue).
The graph reveals that the honesty and integrity rating decreases at every level as you move down the management chain from Top to Middle to Lower. To put it another way, the top managers in an organization create a ceiling; levels of honesty are set at the top and can only go downhill from there. “Integrity standards really do rise — and fall — from the top.”
Rogue or Representative?
“Rogue Traders” are therefore mythical creatures, generated by “Rogue Management” at “Rogue-infested Companies.” In other words, there’s nothing “rogue” about them; they are representative of company culture from the top down.
But the data also challenges all of us with leadership responsibilities in the home, in the church, in business, or in the civil sphere. Rarely will our children, our congregation, our employees, or our fellow citizens rise above the integrity ceiling that we set.
Statism and the road to Serfdom
Michael Milton offers a biblical-theological reflection on the Supreme Court decision on Obamacare.
Gifted Neurosurgeon Ben Carson fails Political Correctness 101 at Emory University
“What is it about Ben Carson that would cause five hundred people—faculty members, students, alumni—to sign a letter of “concern” about him as the Commencement speaker? Well, it turns out that he is an academic heretic. He doesn’t believe in the Darwinian theory of evolution.”
If Michael Hyatt can go offline for vacation, so can pastors! So can we all!
5 Critical steps is your child is hooked on porn
So you discover one of your children has been viewing online porn…
Jerusalem at the time of Jesus
Animated reconstruction of Jerusalem Temple when Jesus lived.
More Tweetables here.
Some of you might have read about Jim Collins spending 50% of his time on creative work, and wondered, “How does he do that?” The Harvard Business Review provides the answer in Manage your time like Jim Collins:
“I block out the morning from 8 am to noon to think, read and write. ” He unplugs everything electronic, including his Internet connection. Although he has a reputation for reclusiveness, when asked about this, he replies: “I’m not reclusive. But I need to be in the cave to work.”
One of his favorite quotes comes from the famously disciplined French novelist Gustave Flaubert: “Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.” For Collins, high-quality work requires long stretches of high-quality thinking. “White space,” as he calls it, is the prerequisite for fresh, creative thought. It’s the time that he spends with nothing scheduled, so that he can empty his mind, like the proverbial teacup, and refill it with new thought.
He aims to spend 100 days next year in the white space. “As a great teacher, Rochelle Myers, taught me, you can’t make your own life a work of art if you’re not working with a clean canvas,” he says. (Another smart bit of Collins philosophy: “Speak less. Say more.”
So how much white space do you have in your life? And how do you secure it?
Shakespeare said that history is “a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” The Christian view of history is quite a contrast; we believe God ordained it, organizes it, and moves it towards a meaningful, definite, and certain purpose.
However many Christians entertain a negative view of Old Testament History, of its usefulness and even of its accuracy. It is often regarded as “far away” and “distant” chronologically, geographically, socially, and theologically. “What can it do for me?” and “Why study it?” are common questions. Here are five reasons to study it and benefit from it.
1. OT History is True History
Israel’s neighbors expressed their beliefs through fantastic, elaborate, “out-of-this-world” myths In contrast, Old Testament narratives about Israel describe real events in real time involving real people and a real God. The reality of Israel’s faith rested on the reality of Israel’s history.
Similarly, if we lose or give up the truthfulness of the Biblical record, we lose and give up the Truth. We also lose our Christian faith because it is founded not on detached philosophical speculations but on God’s acts in human history.
Approaching Old Testament narratives with unshakeable confidence in their accuracy and truthfulness will build up unshakeable faith.
Read the other four reasons at the Ligonier Blog.