“. . . first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:5
Our house these past several weeks has been a beehive of spring clean-up fix-up activities; repainting the outside trim, re-staining the backyard fence, pruning the big beautiful oak trees in the yard, trimming shrubs, fertilizing the grass, planting flowers, and washing windows. Amazing what a difference it has all made.
More amazing, though, is how many deeper issues have been brought to light in the undertaking of these projects. There was rotted wood that needed to be replaced prior to being painted. Same with the fence before being re-stained. Dead limbs in the trees that we had no idea were there. Weeds and undesirable vines growing in the flower beds and beneath the shrubbery that needed to be pulled before new plantings could occur. And a cracked glass that would have gone unnoticed had we not washed the windows – just to name a few. You might say we had to remove some planks from our house (literally in some cases) before we could see clearly to proceed with the more obvious cosmetic work.
It has been an expensive undertaking for sure, but not nearly as costly as it could have been later if left untended, not to mention the benefit of what great condition our house is now in. The same rationale applies in having regular health checkups with a doctor, does it not? And in my work with executives I have noticed similar results, that those who have the courage and humility to invest in periodic self-examination and clean-up fix-up activities tend to be the most effective leaders. Though sometimes time consuming, painful and expensive, if left untended could be even more costly later on, not to mention the benefits of becoming a stronger leader, leading a healthier organization.
“. . . first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” It’s a powerful leadership principle if there ever was one. Amazing what a difference it can make.