7Today’s post is from Dave Katz, an executive with Coca-Cola Consolidated in Charlotte, NC. Since going through one of Regi’s Radical Mentoring groups, Dave has paid it forward and led or co-led 7 RM groups. You can listen to him on the Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast talking about what it means to accelerate culture within your organization . . .
In my job, I have the opportunity to do a fair amount of public speaking. I’m not terribly comfortable at it, but over the years, I’ve learned to prepare enough and trust God enough to be ok with these opportunities.
Sometimes these talks are taped, adding a layer of stress to an already stressful occasion. I recently spoke at one of those events. For any of you who may also get this pleasure, you know the drill. There’s the awkward moment where the videographer has you basically undress in the back of the room to snake a wire through your shirt. Then the debate about where the ‘unit’ should go . . . coat pocket? back pocket? front pocket? Then positioning the microphone just so. And finally, the lesson on how to turn the thing on and off.
This week, the unit looked different, so I made a casual comment to our videographer about the technology change, and he excitedly told me that this device didn’t turn on or off. Instead, it recorded everything in its own little brain, and then later they would sync it up with the video footage and cut out everything before and after.
As I left the back room to join in the break time conversation, a whole new awareness struck me. Literally every word I said would be recorded and possibly listened to. The comment about someone else’s presentation I might have made . . . bite your tongue, Dave. The comment about the food or someone in the audience . . . bite your tongue, Dave.
One of my favorite things about Radical Mentoring is memorizing Scripture . . . especially our focus on the context of a verse. One of the verses I always use is Ephesians 4:29, which says, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” How much unwholesome talk just naturally comes out of our mouths? Stuff that just comes out without even thinking?
This speaking gig presented me with an awesome reminder . . . that a God who knows how many hairs are on my head undoubtedly knows everything I say and to whom I say it. Is what I am saying helpful? Do I know the other person’s needs? Is what I am saying benefitting them?
And having a visual is really going to help me. Imagining I have that cool little microphone recorder in my pocket will help me remember what I’ve been instructed to say and not to say.
What about you? Does any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth?