How might leaders apply these principles today?
The similarity between today’s organizational problems and the problems during the first century may surprise people. But the difficulty leading an organization through the current turbulent times surprises few. Fortunately, the Apostle Peter provides us an example of creativity and innovation. From Peter’s example, this paper infers three principles to apply to your organization. Whether your organization is a religious organization, a school, a non-profit organization, or a for profit organization, these principles will apply.
- Whether the people in your organization are members, employees, volunteers, or leaders, when they experience organizational turbulence or rapid change, you the leaders need to help them begin with what they are familiar, then reconfigure or recontextualize that experience or knowledge into the current or emerging situation. Turbulence and change scares people, so they need to go back to the familiar. You can lead them forward from that point.
- For your organization to flourish in turbulent times, it needs people who identify themselves with the values and identity of the organization. There is always a tendency for people to become self-defensive or self-protective and thereby lose their concern for the organization. Your organizational family must be proud and honored to be part of the team. If your organization possesses values and a purpose worth sacrificing for, your members will be proud of their family and honored to be part of it.
- For your organization to flourish in turbulent times your people must see themselves fully as part of a fictive family. You need to provide more than just a paycheck or saying “thank you” a few times. You need to be a servant-leader; you need to build a family within your organization where people care about the organization and about one another.
Peter knew that life is tough and that people need to belong to a family where they can find identity and sense of purpose – a family committed to one another as a fictive family. As an organizational leader, you need to build a feeling of family. As a family, you need the people you lead to serve the purposes of the organization and they need you to serve them.