Consider your faith as you set work goals for 2011

| Tom Bengtson | December 16, 2010 | 0 Comments

Managers everywhere set goals for the coming year.

Everyone who is serious about their job should do the same for themselves.

What are your goals for 2011?

Don’t limit your answer to revenue, customer volume and other standard performance indicators.

Consider what your work has done for your relationship with God. How might you improve that relationship through your work in the coming year?

Consider these three approaches.

Solve a problem.

Most people go into self-defense mode when someone asks about a problem at work. If a colleague asks “Did you leave the break room a mess?” don’t just say “no” and walk away.

Answer in a manner that solves the problem, like: “Let me help you clean it up!”

Usually, when someone asks who did something, they want help fixing the problem more than they care about identifying the perpetrator.

Think about God solving the big­gest problem that ever came along — original sin. God makes a perfect world and we humans mess it up. He didn’t have to help us. It wasn’t his problem, it was ours, but God solved it by sending his only son to save us.

Do the work

Do the work no one else wants to do. No matter where you work, there are unrewarding tasks that everyone avoids: taking out the trash, changing the toner in the copier, answering the phone, calling on past-due accounts, filling out forms, or cleaning up the storage room. Take on one or more such chores voluntarily; don’t wait to be asked. Do it because it needs to be done.

A willingness to take on the jobs others avoid is simply a workplace way to animate Christ’s instruction that “whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant,” (Matthew 20:26).

There are all kinds of opportunities to serve colleagues and customers in most jobs; consider the opportunities and turn them into relationship builders.

Be humble.

Self-promotion is a big part of some company cultures. I know one company where people put their names on everything, even other peoples’ ideas!

But an organization where everyone is thinking about their own prosperity will never be as successful as a group of people working toward a common goal. That’s why the All-Star team is never as good as a World Series champion. It takes humility to engage around an organizational goal rather than a personal goal.

True humility is understanding your place in the presence of God. In no way is humility a sign of weakness or shyness.

Humble people are sufficiently confident that they do not feel threatened by those around them; in fact, they gladly help those around them without worrying about their own prospects for ad­vance­ment.

Christ, who perfectly understood his relationship with God, was the perfect example of humility, doing everything for us without concern for himself.

So go ahead and make those performance goals with respect to sales and other traditional measures; but don’t ignore your faith.

Set goals at work that will help you develop your relationship with God, as well as your colleagues.

Tom Bengtson, who runs a publishing company, can be contacted through his website at

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Category: Faith and the Workplace