The Power of A Mentor
by Dr. Waylon B. Moore
Twelve executives were grouped at the top of AT&T's international
communication empire. Most intriguing, though, is that these very different men
had a common management background.
Robert Greenleaf, an officer for AT&T, found in his research that these
executives were able men, but not exceptional. Each one, however, reported
having one early boss who greatly accelerated his progress as a manager.
But most surprising was the fact that four of the 12, Greenleaf
said, had their early formative experience under one mid-level manager.
He had mentored one-third of AT&T's top management.
Throughout the company, from mid-level careers to upper-level executives, this
one man had trained and spurred on business people in their formative years.
Greenleaf says that he was probably the most influential manager of his
generation significantly influencing the course of AT&T as a whole
by his development of people. He was a master mentor, in the Sponsor category.
Mentoring can be exceedingly powerful, to shape a family, a business, a church,
a nation, and even a whole world.
Let's see how mentoring impacted the world. Go back with me to Bible times.
Forty miles south of Turkey in the Mediterranean is the small island of Cyprus. We're
not sure just when he was saved, but a Cypriot named Joseph started a spiritual
tidal wave so impacting that it flooded the Roman world and changed history.
All Joseph did was mentor two men. One, an older teen who initially quit, but
was trained into greatness. This teenager later wrote the second Gospel. The
other man mentored by Joseph was a hyperthyroid, traveling custom tent-maker. A
man who wrote half the New Testament, planted dozens of churches, and pioneered
evangelism and disciple-making methods that still work after 1,900 years. The
man from Cyprus who influenced these Influencers? Joseph's Greek name was
Barnabas, which means encourager. This encouraging leader exercised
the power of mentoring, marking the lives of Mark and the apostle Paul.
A professor who has analyzed the lives of 600 leaders in historical and
contemporary Christianity was shocked as he summarized his finding. Most
leaders did not finish well! Those who did had mentors and accountability. What
In my travels, talking with church staff and missionaries, I've asked,
Who are the resource people living here who help you keep growing in
Christ? Some say, We're accountable to each other on the
staff. Oh? But in private conversations I've often discovered
that few are truly being mentored.