Friday, 21 September 2012
I have been thinking a fair bit about businesses and public-sector bodies, their internal manoeuvres, their personnel moves and so on.
In any big organisation, when attractive promotions or transfers are in the offing, the more ambitious ones think ahead and make their moves early. Bringing your name to the attention of the corporate talent-spotter or some other influential senior person; giving a good impression; announcing or even just suggesting some initiative which is greeted with enthusiasm by the "punters" and the media: all of these things are likely to be noticed in the right quarters.
Are the ambitious people the best candidates? Perhaps, but only if their recent high-profile ideas are of a pattern with their long-term overall performance. It is as well to be clear-headed and not to be swept along by the latest news.
There will be other members of the organisation, whose quality is of a steady, consistent kind, without sudden flashes of publicity. They have a demonstrable track record of good management; of getting on with what they are supposed to be doing; and they do it well. They inspire; they train and develop and care for their people. Most of all, they are focused on the core objectives of the organisation. For a commercial business, these fundamental objectives would be to win customers, and to retain them.
If, just for the sake of example, I were writing about the Church in this context, those steady, consistent ones would have demonstrated a constant purpose that is also the core purpose of the Church: the aim of saving and sanctifying individual souls, and as many of them as possible; of leading them to heaven.
In making his judgments, the wise talent-spotter will assess each of them by their fruits, which do not grow in a day.