JULY 19, 2009
(STAR) BUSINESS MATTERS (BEYOND THE BOTTOM LINE) By Francis J. Kong - Let me bring you a story straight from the good book The Bible. And I want you to really study the words that are said in the story. This concerns David who is considered the greatest king of Israel. It was not the grandeur of the Armani suit and Gucci shoes wearing Solomon who was recognized by The Author of the Bible as the greatest king but this lowly shepherd boy David who is.

So I would highly recommend that you pull out that book from your book shelf, blow off the thick dust that covers it, open it and just so you would not accuse me of making up this story, look at the Old Testament in 2Samuel Chapter 23 from verses 13 to 17. Now if you have a hard time finding out where that portion is, just look up the Table of Content. I can assure you, that chapter is located in between the Book of Genesis and the maps.

Now here is the story:

“During harvest time, three of the thirty chief men came down to David at the cave of Adullam, while a band of Philistines was encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. At that time David was in the stronghold, and the Philistine garrison was at Bethlehem. David longed for water and said, “Oh, that someone would get me a drink of water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem!” So the three mighty men broke through the Philistine lines, drew water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem and carried it back to David. But he refused to drink it; instead, he poured it out before the LORD. “Far be it from me, O LORD, to do this!” he said. “Is it not the blood of men who went at the risk of their lives?” And David would not drink it. Such were the exploits of the three mighty men.”

Now you know why David as a leader was a great leader. He was thirsty. Yet he would not take a single drop of water brought to him by his own men who risked their lives getting it. And then I watched the news. And then there was this huge company who is a recipient of the government bail out system in America insisting that a hefty bonus should be paid their executives because they “deserve it?”

Maybe we’ve lost it. Haven’t we?

Somehow society has lost many of the qualities that made life noble. Qualities like sacrifice, passion, dignity and living life as a good example for people to follow. “Oh but these people are passionate people” they reason. “They deserve their bonuses.” So let me add up one more virtue that is missing. “Shame?” While the same company removes jobs and deprives families of their steady income, their executives now feel that they are entitled to “their bonuses because they deserve it?” Where is the shame? Where is the sacrifice?

Max De Pree, in his book entitled: “Leadership Is an Art” says: “The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.” But it seems like we don’t see a lot of servants in the work place these days. What we see are a lot of little spoilt brats bossing people along the way.

Greed is never good. Greed can get you what you want but it robs you of what you already have. If the business organization is doing well, then by all means everyone should have a share in the profit. But if it is running on empty and you have some bozos claiming that giving out fat bonuses to certain privileged people is necessary then you would know that somehow they have lost it.

A bank executive I highly respect told me one thing I will never forget, “Francis, the one most important quality I would like to see in our people is having a sense of sacrifice so that everyone in the company wins.”

And oh how right he is.

Do not work for the bonus. Let it come and surprise you but understand that the best reward for a man’s labor is not what he gets for it but what he becomes by it.

(Francis Kong will be the lead trainer for the Dr. John Maxwell’s “Developing the Leader Within You” leadership program this July 28-29 at the EDSA Shangri-La Hotel. For further inquiries contact Inspire Leadership Consultancy Inc. 632-6872614 or 09178511115)

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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