I wanted to feature a blog that has really inspired me that I think you should read: the Faith and Work Blog, run by David Miller. Miller is the director of the Princeton University Faith and Work Initiative and the blog seeks to explore the connection between these two things that play a huge role in many people’s lives: faith and work. This post is one that I think you should check out. Miller relates his experience teaching a business ethics course at Princeton. The title of the post is a line he uses to make sure that the most important lessons that he wants to get across do not go unnoticed by his students. His latest post gives some recent examples of servant leadership. It’s really great stuff. Head on over there to check it out and let us know what you think!
God’s will is of course also critical to your business. But how do we discern properly? There is not one single question to that – everyone has their way of doing that, and it might change over time. At least that’s my experience. One of the best guides in this matter that I know is Father Timothy M. Gallagher, O.M.V. In his latest book, The Discernment of Spirits he describes the process of discernment in the most understandable and simplest ways I’ve ever read. He’s using real life examples to show how this works (one of the cases is based on an interview with me and his insight and explanations are superbly helpful. The book is actually the last of a series – I recommend each one of them – and even more so, if you have a chance to every attend an event or a retreat with Fr. Tim, definitely go for it.
A great interview in the Financial Times with my former work-colleague and friend Eric Kacou. In the Interview, Eric explains his enterprise solutions approach to eradicating poverty and discusses the benefits of having gone through the Wharton MBA. The reason for his interview, however is a book he just released: Entrepreneurial Solutions for Prosperity in BoP Markets: Strategies for Business and Economic Transformation. In his book, Eric laments that many BoP firms are locked in a “survival trap” that keeps them small, inefficient, and unprofitable. Eric identifies breakthrough business models, operational techniques, and leadership approaches that can help BoP businesses grow rapidly, successfully, and profitably. Drawing from his immense on-the-ground experience in Africa’s most challenging business environments, Kacou shows how companies can overcome the Survival Trap mindset that breeds dependence, mistrust, and failure. Next, he takes readers inside the Rwandan metamorphosis: the economic miracle that CNN’s Fareed Zakaria calls Africa’s biggest success story. Eric shows how to address the needs of all core stakeholders. He concludes with integrated recommendations for local entrepreneurs, global businesses, governments, and international organizations: guidance that can truly launch a “virtuous cycle” of prosperity creation. For all entrepreneurs, policymakers, NGO professionals, and leaders who want to… Read more
This is the last in a series of installments that together constitute the text for an address delivered by Bishop Javier Echevarría, Prelate of Opus Dei to inaugurate the 15th International Symposium on Ethics, Business and Society on May 16, 2008 on the campus of IESE in Barcelona. The address is titled “Christian Humanism in Business and Management.” The full text can also be found here. Christian Humanism in the Business Leader Christian Humanism goes beyond this structural dimension in management. It must, above all, make an impact on people. I am referring now to those who create and manage companies. Their task requires education, experience, technical skills and — last but not least — the exercise of virtue. The Christian faith teaches everyone the path to these good operational habits and their exercise. In all honesty, it can be said to teach especially those who hold managerial positions. The virtues enrich them not only as persons but also as managers. In this context the exercise of these human virtues (which in Christians are all guided by charity) takes on great importance. I will limit myself to a brief consideration of the need to love and serve others. Caring for… Read more
This is the third in a series of installments that together constitute the text for an address delivered by Bishop Javier Echevarría, Prelate of Opus Dei to inaugurate the 15th International Symposium on Ethics, Business and Society on May 16, 2008 on the campus of IESE in Barcelona. The address is titled “Christian Humanism in Business and Management.” The full text can also be found here. Christian Humanism in Business Let us now consider humanism in business administration. As in any human activity of governance, in this field there is a certain underlying vision of the person, of the company itself and of its mission in society. By offering an elevated concept of human beings, Christian Humanism, beyond being a good fit with business administration, lends a truly humanizing perspective that is intent on serving others and broadening horizons. This perspective includes specific principles and moral norms, but ultimately the main point of reference is the works and teachings of Jesus Christ. He stands before us as our living, permanent example, as the essential norm of moral conduct. This is reflected very concretely in the commandment to love our neighbors, for which Jesus himself serves as example and measure (cf.… Read more
This is the first in a series of installments that together constitute the text for an address delivered by Bishop Javier Echevarría, Prelate of Opus Dei to inaugurate the 15th International Symposium on Ethics, Business and Society on May 16, 2008 on the campus of IESE in Barcelona. The address is titled “Christian Humanism in Business and Management.” The full text can also be found here. I provide this lecture here because I believe this is a thoroughly inspiring text that is well worth reading. Christian humanism is a topic of great interest to me and after reading this, hopefully to you as well. Christian Humanism in Business and Management I am delighted to be at IESE once again for the celebration of the school’s 50th anniversary. I personally witnessed Saint Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer’s interest and perseverance in fostering its first steps and development. I give thanks to God for its achievements thus far and ask him to continue to bless IESE as it carries out the mission entrusted to it by Saint Josemaría. I have been requested to address the topic of Christian Humanism in this International Symposium on Ethics, Business and Society, which focuses on the quest… Read more