Leadership Principles from Jacob 5

We can learn at least four leadership principles from the Allegory of the Olive Tree:

Principle #1:  Be patient.  
Make a plan, communicate it clearly, and then give it some time before evaluating whether it is working or not.  Don’t micromanage, and don’t constantly check to see if the plan is working, or worse, constantly revise the plan before you know whether it’s working or not. (See v. 6, 15, 29.)

5 And it came to pass that he pruned it, and digged about it, and nourished it according to his word.
6 And it came to pass that after many days it began to put forth somewhat a little, young and tender branches; but behold, the main top thereof began to perish.

Principle #2: Counsel with your team.  
Carefully consider the feedback you are getting from members of your team.  Ask them questions.  Listen to their answers.  Reserve judgement on a question until you have had the opportunity to consider their opinions. (See v. 26-28, 47-51.)
49 And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Let us go to and hew down the trees of the vineyard and cast them into the fire, that they shall not cumber the ground of my vineyard, for I have done all. What could I have done more for my vineyard?
50 But, behold, the servant said unto the Lord of the vineyard: Spare it a little longer.
51 And the Lord said: Yea, I will spare it a little longer, for it grieveth me that I should lose the trees of my vineyard.

Principle #3: Be willing to adapt.  
When you have given a plan some time to succeed and it isn’t working (even if it was working previously), be willing to change course and try something new.  Evaluate what went wrong, craft a new plan which is likely to succeed based on what you now know, and begin to execute the new plan.  (See v. 7-9, 52-54.)

54 And, behold, the roots of the natural branches of the tree which I planted whithersoever I would are yet alive; wherefore, that I may preserve them also for mine own purpose, I will take of the branches of this tree, and I will graft them in unto them. Yea, I will graft in unto them the branches of their mother tree, that I may preserve the roots also unto mine own self, that when they shall be sufficiently strong perhaps they may bring forth good fruit unto me, and I may yet have glory in the fruit of my vineyard.

(Jacob 5:54)

Principle #4: Work alongside those you lead.  
Spend time with them and do the work with them, so that you can experience what they are doing for yourself.  That will help you make more well-informed decisions, and it will help them trust your decisions more.

72 And it came to pass that the servants did go and labor with their mights; and the Lord of the vineyard labored also with them; and they did obey the commandments of the Lord of the vineyard in all things.

3 thoughts on “Leadership Principles from Jacob 5

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  1. Good thoughts. The Lord is definitely playing the long game. He is very patient, even to the point of leaving the bad in place until he can get the good to grow strong enough to hold on its own. Thanks for this post.


    1. Thanks for the comments. I agree that perspective is key to these leadership principles, and that the Lord of the vineyard was able to be patient specifically because he was able to visualize a happy future outcome.


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