Douglas McGregor published a book in 1960, now a classic, titled The Human Side of Enterprise. In it he identified two different beliefs we all have about human behavior to some degree:
X – The belief that people dislike work and must be forced to perform
Y – The belief that people enjoy learning and achieving significant things
We all have varying degrees of the two beliefs. We handle people according to our beliefs about them. Y management releases staff’s high level motivators. X management freezes staff’s initiative.
You might ask why the two beliefs and actions make such a difference. X-Style managers are autocrats. They want things their way and they alone know the best way to do things. What drives the X is a high need for power and authority. If their goals are blocked they get angry and take it out on staff. If you worked for an X boss would you do only what you must to keep your job, or get really engaged and apply your best skills with high energy?
The Y-Style manager uses teamwork and collaboration. Staff get to share their ideas and participate in decisions. When changes are implemented the boss has their buy-in. They don’t push back, they push ahead. Higher productivity turns into higher profit. The X-Style manager just wonders: How did you do that? The real answer is, With help from Jesus. What? Yes, that’s right! Jesus taught his disciples in Mark 10:43: “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you. Whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant. Southwest Airlines, Starbuck’s Coffee, Chik-Fil-A and many premier companies have adopted a Servant Leadership strategy and don’t have a problem hiring good employees. W. Edwards Deming, called ‘The Father of Quality Evolution’ put it this way:
“The most valuable ‘currency’ of any organization is the initiative and creativity of its members. Every leader has the solemn moral responsibility to develop these to the maximum in all his people. This is the leader’s highest priority.”
Jesus is recruiting good managers. Autocrats don’t cut it. Would you make His short list?
Membership Director KofC Council 12240 at St. Bonaventure Church