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Leadership Lessons from Raising Kids


Proverbs 22:6(KJV) says “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

I normally hear this from Christians raising up their kids. The scripture specifically mentions the way we should raise our kids.It says “train” and not just “teach.” More often, we simply teach our children how to live but not train them. Training requires skill. When you are a trainor (as I still am), you must have the appropriate skills to be effective because while teaching the concepts, you are also showing them how to do it. This is what differentiates teaching from training. Our children might be hearing our teaching but not seeing it being done. Then we are not training them. The proper way is to teach AND do. And training requires repetition.Which means you have to make it as a part of your system as if it were a habit. Talk about training our kids how to pray, respect elderly, go to church, etc. Now this is what the scripture means by “training up a child.”

But what does this have to do with leadership? In organizations, we sometimes hear management being frustrated at their employees’/subordinates’ performance. Top executives have become too engrossed with day-to-day operations. All they ever do is send memos (emails included) and deliver speeches during anniversaries, expecting the subordinates to be fired up and be enthusiastic. What’s worse is that management expects a lot from their employees but their staff don’t even know what and how to do what they are supposed to do to meet those expectations. It’s like throwing a child in a pool and expect him to be an Olympic gold medalist. It doesn’t make sense. What they have forgotten is that they need to “train up” their subordinates. Which means teaching and doing as well. And this takes time, not to mention effort. That is why mentoring and coaching plays a vital role in the success of an organization.

If we are managing an organization, let’s consider how the scripture defines raising up kids. After all, don’t we treat our organizations as such?

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