This post is part of our 2017 Lead Change Group Guest Blogger Series. Today we are pleased to introduce you to Craig Marek.
In today’s terms, King Solomon would be the wealthiest man alive; his control and influence would have a global reach, his wisdom unmatched. Solomon, one of the greatest leaders in history was bored…even discouraged. “Nothing new under the sun” he lamented. He was witnessing selfishness, pessimism and emptiness in others and himself. How tragic is it for the king of leaders to sense a hollow vacuum? Through much searching and submission he determined that as a leader, he (and we) set misguided objectives and deadlines, make shallow commitments and excuses, speak too quickly and overextend ourselves. This feels so similar to the endless hours (years) of trying to find the ultimate leadership style or system – we still “chase after the wind.” We sit in conferences and workshops trying to adapt to unrealistic and non-contextual approaches that leave us practicing demanding, controlling authority that may or may not enhance our career…”all is vanity” the author cries. The vacuum still exists.
A life changing dose of humility for the most powerful man in the world was the only option (humility enough to invest in those who are in submission to him). Solomon decided to start with submitting himself to God’s authority and becoming a true servant so he could add value to others and deploy their talents. He had the wisdom but needed to apply it to his authority, the authority he needed to provide for their needs, not demand fulfillment of his own.
What a change! Truly Disruptive! Not to throw in disorder but to rupture the existing style. Solomon disrupted an unchallenged authority process (his own) to accept his calling to serve those he manages, leads, teaches and even taxes. The risk-taking seems less threatening than the responsibility a leader takes on by demanding respect and performance. We have been told we can be superstar leaders through inflation of self and a superior sense of control and authority. This often means manipulation and intimidation of those we have charge of. The simple alternative is to start listening and trusting, taking care of those who truly do the work that matters. True humility, but yet so disruptive. The wisest leader was willing to take a risk. Investing in all those he was responsible for created a level of influence that changed the world.
The leadership world today continues to “chase after the wind” and still “nothing is new under the sun.” Years ago the first Disruptive Influencer changed it all by submitting to his God. His emptiness was filled and the groundwork was set for those who followed to become modern Disruptors.
Craig Marek has worked in Emergency Services for 35 years. He has been falling into roles of leadership for the entire time, and is still trying to figure out what to do about it. For the last 25 years he has been leading and managing one of the largest (in geographic catchment) EMS/Fire communications centres in North America. Industry change has been intense, opportunities for influence great and rewards many. No reward as blessed as living with a loving family amongst the many Nonwestern Ontario lakes.