July 27; The Fire In The Furnace Burns Better When There’s Snow On The Roof
MANAGEMENT BY THE BOOK:
365 Daily Bible Verse &
One-Minute Management Lessons For The Busy Faithful

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Chapter Seven: Power; 27 July

Count all the men from

thirty to fifty years of age

who come to serve in the work at the Tent of Meeting.

Numbers 4:3

The Fire In The Furnace Burns Better When There’s Snow On The Roof

Age-less

Your Business Professor has reached the status of “a senior gentleman of a certain age” which is diplomatic code for “old guy.”

So I had to do what no young person would need to do. I had to run around more…

…no, not on my wife. But on a track.

Marathon_RichmondA decades ago, I started to run marathons; 26.2 miles. As one wag noted “A long way to run? —Goodness, that’s a long way to drive…” But as miles accumulated on life’s odometer, Your Business Professor, like other senior [there’s that word again] managers, had to demonstrate that my energy matched my experience, such as it is.

If I was to influence clients I had to rack up the miles, and not just on an airplane.

This is still another conundrum for a manager to manage. She has to be old enough to have experience and still young enough To Get Things Done. As CEO Jack Welch reminds us in “The 4-E’s of GE leadership,” the manager must have,

the personal Energy to welcome and deal with the speed of change…the ability to create an atmosphere that Energizes others…the Edge to make difficult decisions …and the ability to consistently Execute.

This is the ‘energy in the executive’ that Alexander Hamilton outlined in the Federalists papers Number 70. Hamilton, who can be seen on the US ten dollar bill, wrote that energy or activity in the presidency is “the leading character in the definition of good government.”

French philosopher Montesquieu (1689-1755), who is known for the ‘separation of powers,’ called this “vigor” in the executive.

Younger people and the manager’s younger self really don’t need the marathon-mileage demonstration to show Energy.

***

It takes decades to season a CEO. Years of trial and error are needed to refine the practice, the craft of management, which is only improved by, well, practice. Marathons are measured by the mile and are a proxy for energy. So what is the measure of wisdom and judgment?

***

Numbers 4:3 provides some direction. Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who come to serve in the work at the Tent of Meeting.

Jack Weinberg would lead the lunacy of the Free Speech hippy Movement in 1964 at UC Berkeley. He said, “Don’t trust anyone over 30.”

The Bible would have, of course, a different perspective: “Don’t trust anyone under 30” to manage anything important. Joseph was thirty when appointed as deputy to the Pharaoh. David was anointed King at thirty. Even The Christ went public at that same number of years.

This is simple pattern recognition.

Jesus began his ministry at the age of 30 earning the right to be called, “Rabbi” or teacher. He managed a group of 12 direct reports and his leadership changed the world.

The United States Constitution is the basis for all of our country’s laws. The founding document follows Scripture and sets the minimum age for the CEO of the USA at 35 (a mere pup) [sigh].

Full Disclosure: Charmaine ran those marathons with me. And she doesn’t need to since her leadership experience increases, but her age seems not to.

###

Accountability and the age 30, Page 10, Fresh Illustrations for Preaching and Teaching, Rowell, Co-published by Christianity Today, Inc., and Baker Books, 1997, Grand Rapids, MI.

 

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