Shepherding in the Context of COVID19

The Shepherd CEO

A story is told of a man who was out grazing sheep and while tending to them, discovered that one was missing.

The story tells us that he left the 99 and went to look for the 1 because it was important.

In the next 6 weeks, we will be going through a favourite poem written by a shepherd boy but which today, is a gem for leaders battling to keep their business, family and community entities afloat in the 21st century pandemic.

In these times, it is easy to let go of the one and be thankful for the remaining 99. However, when as, a leader, a shepherd CEO, you sit down to count the impact of COVID19, do you want to be the one whose business entity lost something that could have been saved and maintained?

Here is the poem that can help maneuver this season for a leader who is in it, to win it.

PSALMS 23

The Lord, the Shepherd of His People

A Psalm of David.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.

He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.

New King James Version

Today’s musings are on the first paragraph:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

In it’s most original form and structure, the word “Lord” gives reference to one who has authority over another. In addition to that authority, that person provides for and protects those under his charge.

A shepherd’s job is likely to be the most thankless exhaustive work under the sky. One of the principal duties at all seasons of the year is for the shepherd to plan food and water (basics) for his flock.

Are you a shepherd CEO whose staff and business stakeholders can aptly say, “With him/ her at the helm, I lack for nothing”?

Provision for your flock

That means you:

  • Pay salaries on time and in full as agreed with your staff
  • Manage your Cash flow so that you can meet all your financial obligations to staff, suppliers etc.
  • Have a plan for sustaining your business as a revenue source as long as they associated with your company
  • Remit the statutory payments without fail to the relevant authorities
  • Make strategic decisions with considerations given to your staff

Your staff

It’s accurate to say that staff will never be satisfied with their wages, but, it is important that they are paid when and if they work. “A laborer is worthy of his wages.”

Of all the reasons your team member should be in lack, let it not be that their pay is delayed or that you have withheld it because you had other obligations to meet or because you needed to sort out your needs first.

In the context of COVID, finances are strained from home to office and everywhere in between. Of the most beneficial training sessions one can hold for their team members, Basic Personal Finance ranks highly.

I’m certain you are asking of what benefit it will be to empower your staff with such a training. Well, let me give you a few:

* reduced, if not totally eliminated, requests for salary advance which messes up your cash flow

* reduced liability in view of increased staff loans

* better productivity with lesser stress levels

If you are willing to go this route, talk to your bank or have your HR team organise a zero-cost training for your staff on this matter.

Good leadership is characterised by planning with foresight and learning with hindsight. Equip your staff to manage the resources you compensate them with and they will lack for nothing.

Next week we talk about Creating Meadows & Brooks in a Pandemic.

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