being stretched at work

Today’s post is a piece I wrote for http://www.christianwomenatwork.com, which was posted yesterday. These are essential the steps I take when faced with an unexpected situation, such as the recent passing of my co-worker. May He bless you as you seek Him first, especially on the hardest of days filled with the unexpected.

There are many days when you walk in to work, and something isn’t going according to plan.

A key employee may be sick or away on vacation, a holiday may have dropped the amount of foot traffic into your place of business, the internet crashed, a tax hike came into effect, or any one of a thousand other possibilities pops up for you to need to immediately deal with.

As a Christian business woman, whether you are staff, the owner or an entrepreneur, how you face the unexpected puts His face on display at work.

Bringing the Unexpected to God in Prayer:

God, You know my heart, and this business better than anyone else. Would You guide me as to the best way to handle this situation? Help me to clearly hear Your voice, to remain calm when tension fills the air, and to trust that You will walk me through to the other side with the grace I need to offer others and the confidence which comes from knowing You are always in my corner. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

There are ten tried and true steps you can take to respond to these kinds of changes in a godly way. I would encourage you to print this list off, and put them into practice when you next face an unexpected situation.

  1. Before anything else, pray. Ask for His wisdom and guidance. Ask Him to make clear the next step you are to take, especially when it isn’t clear to you or its the first time “this” has happened. (Philippians 4:6-7)
  2. Listen. Wait until you have heard what you believe He is letting you know is the next step. (Proverbs 3:6)
  3. Delegate when appropriate. The next step may be to call or speak to one of your staff or service providers to address the issue. (Exodus 18: 17-23)
  4. Control your emotions. Don’t allow others to see how flustered you may actually be on the inside when you are the boss. If you need a few minutes to control your emotions, do so in private. (Philippians 4:13)
  5. Carefully choose your words. Respond with kindness, authority, direction and respect. People who are stressed out around us tend to grow calmer with a positive response in an unexpected situation. (Proverbs 18:21)
  6. Monitor the situation.  Follow up with your staff, service provider, client as appropriate to ensure the situation is being properly addressed and managed. (Colossians 3:23)
  7. Thank those who stepped up to help. A thank you card, a coffee or tea, or a genuine thank you and compliment to someone who helped you fix this unexpected situation is always recommended.  (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
  8. Thank God for His assistance and guidance. Gratitude is an often overlooked character trait which His children are encouraged to develop and put into practice. (Psalm 95:1-3)
  9. Take note. If this unexpected situation is one that might pop up again in the future, leave yourself a record of how you handled it, so your future self can use it as reference. (Psalm 77:11)
  10. Remember to always expect the unexpected. Life has many ups and downs, as do businesses. However, those who look to the Lord need not fear or fret, for we know He is with us and able to help us through anything! (Colossians 4:2)

Blessings as we walk into a new week at work, confident He goes with us.

Karla


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