認識你羊群的重要性

By Rick Boxx

一個專業主管網絡作了一項調查,發現許多執行長顯然不像他們想的那麼了解屬下。例如,這調查中有幾乎10%的主管說工作與生活的平衡對他們是重要的,但這些執行長中很少人認為這與他們的屬下有什麼關係。

然而,這些屬下有許多人也被詢問,調查顯示他們對工作與生活之平衡的興趣比執行長所以為的高兩倍。

根據這調查所發現的不一致,顯然這些領袖要花些功夫去更了解員工的需要與希望。

在聖經新約中,耶穌談到領袖與他們的跟隨者有堅強、成長之關係的重要性。在約翰福音10章14節,耶穌用畜牧業來說明:「我是好牧人;我認識我的羊,我的羊也認識我」。

從個人的觀察,耶穌了解若沒有牧人的警戒和照顧,任性且無助的羊隻會有何慘況。耶穌非常了解祂的羊群,而且知道他們也需要認識祂。把這原則應用到職場,我們花時間和精力去認識我們所管理的員工,以及他們來更認識我們,兩者同樣重要。

我知道許多執行長和高級主管每天都撥出幾分鐘去員工工作的場所,去認識他們,詢問他們的家庭狀況,看看他們過得如何,不但在個人生活上,也包括工作上。

在聖經舊約中的另一處經文也提到照顧羊群的比喻。這些經文給我們另一個好理由去努力了解為我們工作的人:

你要詳細知道你羊群的景況,留心料理你的牛群;因為資財不能永有,冠冕豈能存到萬代?乾草割去,嫩草發現,山上的菜蔬也被收斂。羊羔之毛是為你作衣服;山羊是為作田地的價值,並有母山羊奶夠你吃,也夠你的家眷吃,且夠養你的婢女」(箴言27章23-27節)。

知道「你羊群的景況」──你負責牧養的人──將幫助你確保他們盡最大的生產力,他們的工作表現優良,而且他們在你的雇用下感到知足。

所以若你擔任管理的角色,花時間去認識並了解你的部屬是明智的。提出問題、傾聽,並提供他們機會也來認識你。當面對許多急迫的最後期限和細節要求,這舉動似乎不方便且煩人,但你所投資的時間和關心將帶來極大的利益。

本文版權為正直資源中心(Integrity Resource Center, Inc.)所有。本文獲得授權改編自「瑞克.博克思的正直時刻Integrity Moments with Rich Boxx」。這系列的文章是以一個基督徒的觀點評論職場的正直議題。想要更多了解正直資源中心或想要收到電子文件的「瑞克每天的正直時刻Rick”s daily Integrity Moments」系列文章,請上網www.integrityresource.org。他的書「如何生意興隆而不犧牲正直」提供人們正直地作生意的方法。

省思 / 討論題目
若你是主管或經理,你認為你有多了解你的屬下?你認為他們又有多了解你? 今天你可以採取什麼步驟開始去更多了解你的屬下?你同意做這件事是必需且重要的嗎?為什麼? 為何聖經用羊群和牧人的比喻來描述領袖和跟隨者的關係,不論在職場或其他場合? 若主管、經理和員工更互相了解,你和你的機構在哪些方面會得到益處?註:若你有聖經且想要看有關此主題的其他經文,請看:
箴言18章15節,19章20節,20章5節,24章5-6節,27章17節,28章2節;傳道書4章9-12節;馬太福音7章12節

THE IMPORTANCE OF KNOWING YOUR FLOCK
By Rick Boxx

A survey by a professional network for executives discovered that many CEOs apparently do not know their people nearly as well as they think they do. For instance, almost 10 percent of executives that were surveyed responded that work-and-life balance was important to them, but very few of these CEOs believed it mattered much to their subordinates.

However, many of the subordinates also were questioned, and the research revealed their interest in work-life balance actually was more than twice the level the CEOs expected.

Based on the disparity of the survey”s findings, it appears these leaders have some work to do in gaining a better understanding of the needs and wants of the people that work for them.

In the Bible”s New Testament, Jesus commented on the importance of leaders having a strong, growing relationship with their followers. Drawing a comparison to the world of agriculture, Jesus stated in John 10:14, "I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me."

From personal observation, Jesus understood how wayward and helpless sheep can be without the vigilant care of their shepherds. Jesus knew His flock well, and knew that they needed to know Him also. Applying that principle to the workplace, it seems equally important for us to devote the time and energy necessary to know the men and women under our supervision – and for them to get to know us better.

I have known of numerous instances in which CEOs and top executives would set aside a few minutes each day and stop by the workplaces of various employees, getting to know them, inquiring about their families, and seeking to determine how they doing, both personally and professionally.

Another passage from the Bible, in the Old Testament, provides another analogy to caring for sheep. These verses give another good reason for being diligent to gain a good understanding of the people working for us in our organizations:

Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds; for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations. When the hay is removed and new growth appears
and the grass from the hills is gathered in, the lambs will provide you with clothing, and the goats with the price of a field. You will have plenty of goats” milk to feed your family and to nourish your female servants” (Proverbs 27:23-27).

Knowing the “condition of your flocks” – the people you are responsible for shepherding – will help to ensure they are as productive as possible, that they perform their respective jobs well, and that they will remain content in your employ.

So if you are in a management role, you would be very wise to take the time you need to know and understand your people. Ask questions, listen, and offer them the opportunity get to know you as well. When faced with many pressing deadlines and details, this might seem inconvenient or bothersome, but the dividends gained from your personal investment of time and concern could be substantial.

Copyright 2012, Integrity Resource Center, Inc. Adapted with permission from "Integrity Moments with Rick Boxx," a commentary on issues of integrity in the workplace from a Christian perspective. To learn more about Integrity Resource Center or to sign up for Rick”s daily Integrity Moments, visit www.integrityresource.org. His book, How to Prosper in Business Without Sacrificing Integrity, gives a biblical approach for doing business with integrity.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
If you are an executive or manager, how well do you think you know the people that work for you? How well do you think they know you? What steps could you begin to implement, even today, for gaining a better understanding of the people who report to you in your organization? Do you agree that it is even necessary and important to do this? Why or why not? Why do you think the Bible uses comparisons or analogies to sheep and shepherds for describing the relationships between leaders and their followers, whether in the workplace or other settings? In what ways would you – and your organization – benefit from executives, managers and employees having greater knowledge and understanding of one another?NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about this subject, consider the following passages: Proverbs 18:15, 19:20, 20:5, 24:5-6, 27:17, 28:2; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; Matthew 7:12

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