Posts Tagged ‘don’t run a corporate welfare state’

Day 72: How to Lead by THE BOOK: Don’t Run a Corporate Welfare State!

Saturday, September 18th, 2010

Last night Rhonda and I enjoyed dinner at Pastor Shawn Thornton’s house along with four other couples from Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village, California. The pastor shared his vision for the church and enlisted financial support for its benevolence fund. This fund helps church members going through difficult financial times and provides food, shelter, assistance for utility payments and medical needs and the like. Because of the difficult economy, the benevolence fund has paid out more in assistance the last two years than in the ten years prior! We look forward to supporting this fund and helping members and neighbors in need.

Benevolence funds are necessary and helpful in society, but many businesses have corrupted the concept of helping those with genuine needs, and instead funnel resources into those who fail to perform. In their minds they’re being compassionate, but in reality they are enabling lethargy, laziness, and the inability to execute. In business, you cannot afford to weaken the strong in order to strengthen the weak. Rather, a leader has an obligation to weed out weak performers, and give more substantial support to those who get the job done. While I’ll go into greater detail on this matter in, How to Lead by THE BOOK following are five general thoughts and rules concerning this matter:

1. It is easier to get an already-good performer to become great with training and support than it is to elevate a miserable performer up to mediocrity because the already-good performer has a foundation of talent, discipline, and attitude on which to build.

2. When you ignore your top performers in an attempt to rescue the weak ones–many of whom shouldn’t even be on your payroll in the first place–you weaken the strong in order to strengthen the weak. This creates a corporate welfare state that diminishes your culture and results in mediocrity.

3. The Story of the Talents in Matthew 25 makes very clear that the people who don’t use the opportunities they’ve been given should have them taken away and redistributed to those who get results. This practice is essential in order to become a good steward of your corporate resources.

4. The Story of the Talents also demonstrates that not everyone on your team should be given equal opportunities or compensation. Rather, they should be given what they’ve earned based on past performance. Remember this rule: There is nothing more unequal than the equal treatments of unequals.

5. While everyone on the team must be held to the same high standards of integrity, teamwork, customer care, and work ethic, rewards and responsibilities must be allocated in accordance with what someone has earned and not based on what they need.