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The Wise, the Foolish, and the Evil

Every Thursday at lunch a number of SpringHill staff view one session of the 2011 Willow Creek Leadership Summit videos. This past Thursday we listened to Dr. Henry Cloud teach on the three different types of people in the world – the wise, the foolish and the evil, and the strategies leaders need to use for dealing with each. His talk comes directly from one of the chapters in his most recent and insightful book – “Necessary Endings“.

After finishing the video we had a short debrief about what we learned, what new thoughts we each had and what challenged us. Ironically, the one challenge we all shared was that, as we watched, we all asked ourselves “which person have I been or am I now?” For each of us, it was a challenging moment of personal evaluation that cut right to the heart of many issues and relationships in our lives.

So in the spirit of seeking the light, below are the characteristics of each type of person. Take a moment and do your own self-reflection and ask “what kind of person have I been or am I now?”

Wise Person: When the light (truth) comes to them, they adjust themselves to the light, so who they are a person matches reality. In other words they seek and receive feedback and change themselves as a result.

Foolish Person: When the light (truth) comes their way, they try to adjust the light (deflect the truth) instead of changing themselves. When receiving feedback they deflect, blame and do not take responsibility for their own actions and performance.

Evil Person: When the light shines on them they want to destroy both the light and those that shine it. They have destruction in the hearts and want to retaliate against truth and those who share it.

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