If you don’t scour through the bargain books at your local bookstore, you really should! In doing so a few days ago, I came across The Generosity Factor by leadership/business guru, Ken Blanchard and Chick-Fil-A founder, S. Truett Cathy. The book is almost 10 years old, but the principles are so timeless and wise.
The book is written as a parable about a young, hot-shot broker who despite success is searching for significance. He visits a sage executive who conducts business by a much different motto—generosity. The executive teaches the broker some rock-solid, Biblical principles that are true for business and life. In the end, the broker realizes that the 5 principles make an acronym that spells, “HEART.” He teaches the broker that a changed heart is the key to life. It’s not about how it changes, but about Who changes it. As the broker puts the principles into practice, it not only changes his life but the lives of those around him.
The five principles are:
- He (God) Owns It All—we are merely stewards of God’s gifts
- Every Day Is an Opportunity—everyone has a chance to do something to bless others
- Action is Required—“It’s one thing to think about ways to help others, it’s quite another to act.”
- Remember Your Blessings—Take inventory of the gifts God has given
- Thank Him–Be thankful for what God has given and for opportunities to give to others
These principles form the generosity factor—a changed heart that decides to give of what has been given to him. The principles and examples of the book are taken from the life of S. Truett Cathy. He has do amazing work to serve others through Chick-Fil-A. It’s amazing to see how he has given of his Time, Talent, Treasure, and Touch.
I highly recommend picking up this book—especially if you are a business owner or manager of people. These principles will undoubtedly help you to be a stronger leader. I’ll end this review with a few quotes from the book:
“Generosity isn’t about doing the minimum—simply doing the expected. Every day I look for opportunities to do something extra. I make it a part of my routine. Kind of a habit, you might say.”
“Generosity is an attitude. It must be cultivated daily.”
“I’m just the steward of anything that’s been given to me. I’m a caretaker. Because much has been given to me, much is required of me. That’s my responsibility, and I accept it with gratitude…The natural by-product of gratitude is generosity.”
“The success-motivated person tends to measure his or her life in terms of money, power, status, achievement, and recognition. The significant person places emphasis on a more spiritual view of life—generosity, empowerment of others, service, building up others, and helping them develop solid relationships.”
“You will know you have truly attained significance by the sincerity of your generosity, the joy you find in service, and by the selfless nature of your relationships. You will know by the depth of your changed heart”