Are you a born writer? Were you put on earth to be a painter, a scientist, an apostle of peace? In the end the question can only be answered by action.

Do it or don’t do it.

It may help to think of it this way. If you were meant to cure cancer or write a symphony or crack cold fusion and you don’t do it, you not only hurt yourself, even destroy yourself. You hurt your children. You hurt me. You hurt the planet.

You shame the angels who watch over you and you spite the Almighty, who created you and only you with your unique gifts, for the sole purpose of nudging the human race one millimeter farther along its path back to God.

Creative work is not a selfish act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor. It’s a gift to the world and every being in it. Don’t cheat us of your contribution. Give us what you’ve got.
— Steven Pressfield

I have an initial conversation with nearly every new hire.  I pull them into a conference room and give them a few additional instructions.  This is long after…

  • The phone interview
  • The application being filled out
  • Background checks made
  • The initial face-to-face interview
  • The group interview
  • The cultural screening
  • Etc.

This is the conversation that happens after several days or weeks on the job.  It is an informal one-on-one and it goes pretty much the same way every time.  I tell them to:

  • Submit to the authority over your role & responsibility, on their terms (meet people where they are)
  • Work hard to learn the way we do things and become proficient at the task (earn the right to be heard)
  • Give us what you got… thoughts, ideas, ways to consider for improvement (speak the truth)
  • Finally, let me know personally if that is not well received.

Most companies are not creating widgets in a mechanized process or chain of production.  But we probably have a certain way of doing things and systems that the folks in charge are proficient and very comfortable working within.  Current employees likely don’t spend a lot of time thinking too much outside of that way of doing things.  They are rewarded when they perform the task as prescribed and reprimanded when they don’t.

The best set of eyes are often the newest set of eyes (I think I stole that from Andy Stanley).  Someone new has seen other things and ways of doing things that the others likely haven’t.  Traditional thinking would say that they know less than our seasoned employees, but in the areas of new thought, ideas, and creativity, they probably know more.  The tension is that a newbie presuming to know more, is not well received.

The reality is that we are all unique creations.  We have all walked different paths to arrive at precisely the same place.  We carry toolboxes full of varied practice, knowledge, and the experiential currency gained from redemptive turns in our troubled journey.

I love the quote from Pressfield above.  He reminds us that the antidote to the beautiful collision of the world’s great need and our Father’s great solution, is us… our bringing the gift we have uniquely been created to offer.

  • Are you getting the most out of your new hires?
  • Are you creating a culture where people are encouraged to offer what they have been uniquely created to bring?
  • Are you, by way of precedent, bringing  all you have been uniquely created to offer?