‘Christians should warn governments about the effects of debt and greed’ Spanish group Evangelicals in Economy and Business organises conference for business leaders. Meeting regularly with fellow believers is “vitally important.”
“The Bible has much to say about dealing with people and money, innovation and creativity, decision-making and leadership”, believes Peter Briscoe, a former executive of a high-tech company. He will be one of the speakers of a May 2017 conference organised by the Spanish group Evangelicals in Economy and Business (Evangélicos en Economía y Empresa, Tres-e). Evangelicals in Economy and Business. They bring together people whose desire is to live the professional life according to “biblical values” and see their workplace as their “mission field”.
“Getting to know other Christian professionals who go through similar situations gives a new perspective and helps to discern ways to address certain challenges”, explains Zulima Sánchez, member of the Tres-e committee. A wide variety of professionals – such as people working in engineering, human resources, finances or self-employed workers – are active members of the group. After 6 years of local training, national conferences and production of materials, the group is now organising its first Conference for Executives and Business Leaders (12-14 May, Barcelona).
“The perspectives and needs of executives and business leaders are frquently very specific”, says Sánchez. “Certain topics are addressed from another angle”. Such a conference is important because “we do realise that executives and business leaders have positions that are very visible in the business field, and their testimony has a great impact both inside and outside of their organisation”.
Evangelical Focus asked Peter Briscoe, one of the guest speakers at the Barcelona conference, about the relationship between the Bible and leadership in business.
Question. Why is it important for business people to spend time with other Christians to think about what the Bible says about their job?
Answer. It is vitally important for leaders in business to meet together with fellow believers for mutual encouragement, guidance, support, and to find God’s direction for their organization… A business leader is faced with multiple decisions almost every day. Many decisions will be taken together with staff or managers, but there are many types of decisions for which it is not practical or possible to discuss with others in the same company. Outside help and guidance can be of great help. When I was leading a high-tech company in the field of human spaceflight, we called together a team of business owners to advise me on major decisions. I had lots of tough decisions to make! The people I met with were not high paid consultants but Christians leading their own business who wanted to meet to discuss dilemma’s and tough problems in a confidential manner with each other. We searched the scriptures to see if the Bible could shed any light on these problems and prayed together for Gods revelation and guidance. There were eight of us meeting monthly for a half day of talks, prayer and study on practical business problems. Between the eight of us, we had almost 200 years of practical business experience. We supported each other with our time and experience because we wanted to grow as disciples of Jesus and to glorify God with our businesses. There was not one problem which was brought to the table, which someone had not previously encountered! That person was able to give a testimony on how the problem was solved, or which mistakes they had made. This help, advice and support was worth so much to me as a business leader, and even saved me lots of money by avoiding some mistakes and pitfalls. The Bible has so much to say about dealing with people and money, innovation and creativity, decision-making and leadership. It is a wonderful, dynamic resource for building a business which will shine as a light and testimony to God in a sometimes dark and tough marketplace. We need not go it alone in business as God has also given us fellow Christians to help us!