John Beckett

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Workplaces, Leadership, John, Respect, Organizational Culture, Love, Employee Satisfaction, Accountability


Samantha thought the advice of her grad school professor was a little unusual—words given her as she was about to launch her career: “Don’t get too close to your co-workers,” he said. “You never know when you’re going to have to fire someone, and you don’t want to fire your close friends.” Soon Samantha was moving up the ranks at Agile, a large pharmaceutical firm, and had several associates reporting to her. Reading a book on leadership, she was drawn to the story of Vince Lombardi, the legendary football coach of Wisconsin’s Green Bay Packers in the late ’50s. She was surprised to discover that Lombardi coached his team to love: “We don’t like one another, we love each other,” he said at an awards banquet in 1961. “If you play together as a team, you’ve got to care for one another, you’ve got to love each other, then you know you’ve got a team.” Prompted by Lombardi’s example, Samantha had to make a decision. Would she keep co-workers at a safe distance, or begin to extend care and compassion—love—the kind she knew was deep in her heart toward others?


Contributed to Digital Commons @ SPU with permission from the Theology of Work Project.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License