Business books that provide insight, guidance, and instructions on “how-to” be successful are a popular corner of almost every bookstore. People wanting to know the six steps to great leadership, others seeking to grasp the path to success, while there are those that are looking techniques in winning. There is a belief that success can be achieved through hard work and following the path that other people on the same journey have taken.
Looking across today’s shelves and there are many books that look really good. The irony is that I do not find many that focus on wisdom; they just are not there! It appears that wisdom is defined today as factual knowledge. If you have gathered a wide quantity of statistical facts, processes, and frameworks in your mind the world consider this as smart. I am simplifying, however there is a overall perception that wisdom will come with the combination of “smarts” and experience. Frankly I am not so sure.
If this were the case why would we have so many business leaders who have been caught cheating with their companies financials? They are obviously well paid, they lacked for little, and they were in control. Wisdom was not the key, greed took over. If one looks at the number of political figures who are involved in questionable dealings that end up in inappropriate money exchanging hands and relationship trusts being broken, one quickly concludes that wisdom didn’t play a role here either. The usual culprits are lust for success, power, and of course money again.
There is a very simple formula for wisdom. “Practice God’s law—get a reputation for wisdom; hang out with a loose crowd—embarrass your family.” (Proverbs 28.7) Some are confused by the word law – it simply means to do everything in love. Wake up in love, eat in love, walk in love, act in love, give in love, work in love, and disagree or even fight in love. Still confused? Substitute the words mercy, acceptance, compassion, forgiveness, unconditional, and grace in its place. This is life’s success formula.