day 209: Owning Up

Work is full of underachievers. What I mean by that is that no matter what workplace there is a percentage (I have guesstimated it to be as high as 10%) of the employee population who consistently underachieve and strive to test the lower limits of performance. The lower limits is the least they can do and still not be fired. A brother of a friend of mine does this. He is an hourly employee in a non-union manufacturing facility and each year he misses the maximum amount of days allowed to him under their sick day program and he finds a way to be out of work on disability as much as he can each year. This drives his brother and other members of his family crazy as they don’t understand why he feels like he should always push the lower limits of acceptable performance. I see it and think he is lucky to still have a job. No matter where I have worked there have been individuals and groups who are like this. And, if not dealt with they will before long influence others and create their behavior as that being acceptable by everyone. Managing someone like this is also difficult because no matter what you try, they will attempt to find a work-around and do whatever they have to do to not have to own up to their own performance. While I am not an advocate of immediate removal of anyone from the workplace, these types of individuals cannot be ignored if you are trying to build a culture and workplace of productivity and high contribution levels. What is for sure is that we,as those who are trying to live and work for a purpose and be an example of Christ, are to never be close to being ones who are testing the lower limits. We must own up to the responsibilities and gifts that God has given us. We see this in Romans 12:6; “God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well.” As we discover those gifts and talents we are to take them seriously, develop and better ourselves at those talents and gifts, and use them to our greatest potential and capability. To do anything less would be to not try and do “well”. Today, as you think about what it is that you do well at work, take this lesson seriously. Look at how hard and diligently you are working to perform at your highest level. If you are not, or you are holding back, or you are waiting for some reason, or even if you are afraid to step forward and use your talents, think back on the verse above and know that God has given you these things not to do them half-heartily or just okay. He expects the job to be well done and he expects each of us to own up to our best performance.

Reference: Romans 12:6 (New Living Testament)

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