Points to Ponder - " What does the Customer Value?

More highlights on Peter Drucker's book The Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask About Your Organization. See posts last week if you missed those "Pondering Points."

To get right down to what your customer values, you just need to know what he/she needs and wants. Yet, the question really has to be answered by the customer. Trying to figure it out yourself is guess-wor.

Drucker  recommended that you go about finding these answers in a systematic quest. He used this approack as a professor and would call a random sample of 50+ students a year who graduated 10 years ealier. He would ask questions such as, "looking back what did we contribute in this school? What is still important to you? What shoud we do better? What should we stop doing?" He would then adjust his teaching based upon this knowledge.

You might begin with your assumptions but then truly find out what the customers want and determine the gap and what you are going to do about it. You must listen to your customer, determine the gap, adjust, deliver and the evaluate by starting the process all over again. Jim Collins, an editor of the new release of this book, would suggest his Hedgehog concept from his book Good-to-Great.

Drucker points out the need to have a written plan that includes a evaluation and correction process.


To that end....

WorkLife Viewpoints: What Happened After the Manger?

Thursday, December 25, 2008

This WorkLife Viewpoint was written by Ed Noble, Teaching Pastor, Journey Community Church, San Diego, CA.

WHAT HAPPENED AFTER THE MANGER?

This time of year we get lots of reflection and comment on the events of the first Christmas and its significance. I think that's great. It helps us think about why Jesus came.

But what happened after the manger? Well, Jesus was baptized at about 30 years of age (taking all the factors into consideration, He was probably close to 33 when He was baptized), but we don't hear much about what happened in between.

There's a reason for that. There is a serious absence of biblical data. That is clearly not the focus of the gospel writers.

But another reason is that they assumed that their original audience knew basically what the life of a Jewish boy would be like.

One of the details that are germane to our thinking about the workplace is this: JESUS HAD A JOB - HE WORKED, AND NOT IN "PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY".

We know that it was standard for a Jewish father to pass on his trade to his son. So have you ever reflected on the fact that of all the precious seconds that Jesus was here in the flesh, Jesus spent more of them in the workplace than teaching and preaching? There are a lot of lessons we can draw from this. May I suggest one?

Obviously, the three short years that Jesus spent actually preaching, teaching, healing, training and equipping, were enough for Him to finish all that God had for Him to do (John 17:4).

So, Jesus was no less significant or "called" than those of us who spend all of our time in these activities. The time He did spend was exactly what God had for Him. So it is with you and me. Some of us are called to spend all our time in "traditional ministry".

The majority of us spend a smaller percentage of time in these activities. That doesn't mean we are any less called, any less significant, any less eternity impacting than those of us who are called to spend a higher percentage of time in "traditional ministry".

The key is to be faithful 100% of the time in what God has asked you to do - to be ready for those moments when God may have something unusual for which he has been preparing you. That could be on your very next workday. So, fellow Christ followers, let's do whatever we do, whether it looks like the first thirty years of Jesus' life or that last three, with 100% faithfulness, ready for the moments He will bring our way for His glory. Bless you as you walk with Jesus at Work.

Resources:

His Church at Work - http://www.hischurchatwork.org/

Hill Country Bible Church's WorkLife mininstry - http://www.hcbc.com/templates/System/details.asp?id=28485&PID=398977

Be Cool, Be Patient, Verify Your Facts, Don't Speculate.

There's a lot of speculation going on right now about what might happen in relation to the consideration of upcoming laws and industry changes which don't take hold until next year but the fear of the news and events that are, in part, not fact, but rumor, though by the time it gets back around to the person that originally said it to begin with he has repeated it so many times and heard it himself so much that he believes it to be true when actually he said it himself as speculation of what would happen if the rumor he heard was in fact true when he was actually just wanting to gossip and put fear into the place of just good old common sense that should prevail on the listener to not speculate but instead be cool, be patient and very the facts once they become really known.

Churchill Personified "Never Give Up"

Visiting with someone yesterday, the subject came up about giving up and remember the following story. I’m not sure if it’s exactly true, but there’s a Churchill story that goes something like this:


Two or three years after WWII, Winston Churchill was invited to Woodrow Wilson’s alma mater to give the graduation commencement speech. Of course the press, students, faculty, and citizens alike were awed with anticipation of the famous man and his upcoming rhetoric. The speculation about what he would say was beyond measure.

As Churchill slowly walked out on to the stage, the crowd got deathly quiet. Except for the final rustling of paper, the only thing you could hear was the reporters’ deep breaths and whispered prayers as they prepared to take their notes.

He slowly took that big cigar from his lips,

laid it on the podium,

walked around to the side,

leaned forward,

and said –

"Never, never, never (long silence) GIVE UP!"

With that, backed up, put the cigar back in his mouth and slowly walked off the stage.

Whether this story is entirely true or not, Churchill's life personified never giving up. He was a master at searching matters out, knowing the cards he held in his hand, and how to play those cards. While he was constantly trying to prove his strengths, he wasn't a "wishful" leader.
 
Churchill was an In-the-Box Leader.