1 And now it came to pass that Ammon and king Limhi began to consult with the people how they should deliver themselves out of bondage; and even they did cause that all the people should gather themselves together; and this they did that they might have the voice of the people concerning the matter.
2 And it came to pass that they could find no way to deliver themselves out of bondage, except it were to take their women and children, and their flocks, and their herds, and their tents, and depart into the wilderness; for the Lamanites being so numerous, it was impossible for the people of Limhi to contend with them, thinking to deliver themselves out of bondage by the sword.
When King Limhi faced a significant challenge—how to deliver his people from bondage—his first step was “to consult with the people.” Involving his people in the decision-making process was smart for at least three reasons:
- You can generate more ideas when you have more people working on a problem.
- You are more likely to avoid pitfalls and errors of judgment when more people have an opportunity to review the ideas and raise objections.
- People are far more likely to participate meaningfully in carrying out a plan if they have a role in creating the plan in the first place.
I love this description of how ward councils should operate:
During the meeting, the bishop explains each matter being considered, but he does not normally decide how to resolve the matter until he has heard the discussion. He encourages discussion without dominating it. He asks questions and may ask particular council members for their suggestions. He listens carefully before making a decision. These discussions should foster a spirit of inspiration (Handbook 2, section 4.6.1).
Today, as I make decisions, I will seek input from other people, particularly from those who will be affected by those decisions. I will listen to their ideas and to their cautions before committing myself to a course of action.
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