Weekly Impact is written for leaders by our Executive Director, Garth Jestley, who has decades of experience in senior leadership roles in the financial services sector. Each week he will share insights on life, leadership and faith.
I devoted myself to search for understanding and to explore by wisdom everything being done under heaven. (Ecclesiastes 1:13(a), NLT)
This is the third in a series of blog posts unpacking the mission of LeaderImpact – “helping marketplace leaders explore the relevance of faith in God in their professional and personal lives.” In this post, I will unpack some aspects of “explore.”
During my lengthy career in the financial services sector, I often financed or invested in companies engaged in natural resource exploration. Typically, exploration plans are based upon the analysis of data suggesting the presence of mineral or hydrocarbon deposits in commercial quantities.
Engaging in any sort of exploration requires an open mind and a willingness to take risk. Positive data suggesting the possibility of success does not, of course, guarantee it, a truth borne out by many a “dry hole” in the oil and gas business. Conversely, there are many oil and gas companies in Canada that have transitioned from explorers to producers because of successful exploration programs.
By analogy, our LeaderImpact groups are exploratory enterprises whose goal is discovery. Participants risk valuable time to discuss and assess issues, ideas and challenges. Group leaders do not claim to have all the answers and there is no such thing as a stupid question. Rather, the leaders facilitate open and honest exploration of relevant study materials with the goal of discovering relevant truth. As relationships grow, participants become more transparent. Since a cardinal rule is that anything disclosed stays in the group, these groups are safe places to share life.
Explore the big, important issues of life in a safe, non-judgmental environment in a LeaderImpact Group.
The mandate of our marketplace groups is unique. Most participants have never had a forum in which to explore the big, important issues of life. Here is a small sampling of the types of questions groups I attend have addressed: “What is the meaning of all the hard work I do if I have no time left for my family?” “How do I deal with business failure/success?” “Why is there so much pain in the world (in my life)?”
For those of us who have become followers of Jesus, exploration led to our discovering that Jesus really is who the Bible says He is. For those who have not yet become followers of Jesus, they can explore the reasons for our hope in a safe, non-judgmental environment.
In the oil and gas business, there is a continuum of exploration risk ranging from expensive, high risk/high impact to less expensive, low risk/moderate impact drilling programs. From the many participants with whom I have spoken, the consensus is that the LeaderImpact exploration program is low risk/high return. If you are not yet attending one of our groups, we encourage you to connect for a “test drive.”
Garth Jestley is a husband, father, grandfather, leader and business executive. Most importantly, he is a follower of Jesus Christ.