“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.  In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us.”

Paul to the church in Ephesus

One of the beautiful things around the adoption process is the idea of the “gotcha” day.  Rather than just celebrating when a person came into the world, they celebrate their being chosen on the day they joined their new families.  It is one of the concepts that adoptive parents employ to offset the whispered assault of “abandoned” or “rejected”.  They replace that history with the beautiful reality that they were specially selected by their new loving parents.

Horst Shulze (you’ll be hearing me referencing him a lot in the next few months) was the architect behind the celebrated world class service of the Ritz-Carlton hotel chain.  Many of those concepts can be found in the book, “The New Gold Standard: 5 Leadership Principles for Creating a Legendary Customer Experience Courtesy of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company”,  he freshened some of them in a recent series of podcasts.

The things that were resonating the most with me this morning was the hiring and on-boarding philosophy that Horst employed.  Three things in particular:

  • Culture cannot be outsourced.  In fact, the highest ranking person in the organization should teach, inspire, and get commitments to that culture as a necessary first step (this meant that CEO Horst trained dishwashers and maids around the world).
  • You were not hired, you were chosen.”  You were specially selected among many applicants for the way you would uniquely meet their objectives.
  • Everyone should have a vision.  Once overarching purpose, core values, and best practices are shared, every group of employees comes us with a personal vision statement.  For example, every group of dishwashers had their vision statement for what they wanted to achieve each year and in the future.

He would also tell them that if he doesn’t show up for work tomorrow, that nothing would be changed and very few people would even notice.  If one of them were to fail to show up or not do their job well, however, it would be immediately felt and be seriously disruptive.  

Even though he is the CEO, every one of them is equally valuable to him.

He raised the nobility of doing the most rudimentary things to the level of most important.  He put the incredible opportunity to change lives on their shoulders and got them all to buy into that ideal.

Whether it is the adopting of a child, the hiring and on-boarding of even the lowest common denominator employee, or rescuing mankind from their role as orphans, the best practices are the same:  choose them, celebrate them, and welcome them into the family.

  • As a Christian, do you feel the weight of having been chosen?  (death to life, orphan to sonship)
  • What is the right next thing you could do to make progress in this area?
  • Do you make those you love and lead, feel chosen, celebrated, and welcomed in as part of the family?