Jesus: Not a Great CEO

We’ve been having some great discussions this week on confluence of business and religion. Something we haven’t touched on is how some business types have suggested that Jesus was a sort of model CEO.

I’m sorry Christian business people, but Jesus was a terrible CEO. He languished in a field that was clearly not his passion (carpentry) till he was thirty and then, when he finally started his own operation, it only ran three years. This would seem to indicate someone who spent most of his life not being very purpose-driven. During the time he was operating his business, he frequently told people to keep his miracles secret and he assaulted several men in front of a religious building – you don’t need to be a marketing whiz to understand that neither of these things were helpful for branding a messiah properly. He might have had time to correct for his image problems except that he was out of a job after only three years – the law decided to shut him down, it turns out that he was another corporate criminal!

That’s right, it didn’t take long for Jesus to run afoul of the law – though the signs were there when he flouted the labour codes of the day by working on the sabbath, but soon enough he was sent up the river for being offensive to religious leaders and apparently threatening the government of the day. Understandably, both the religious leaders and the secular government were fed up with his shenanigans. A good CEO might be able to work up some sympathy I suppose, heck even Conrad Black had some pretty important people intercede on his behalf, but when Pilate inquired about what to do with Jesus, the people – as if to remove any doubt about his lack of marketing savvy – said that he should be killed!

What about the team that Jesus had selected? Was he at least good with human resources? Nope, it seems that they were useless. They never appeared to *get* his instructions and weren’t really able to succeed in the business’ core competencies when the boss wasn’t around. When he was brought up on charges they were still useless, well mostly useless, one of them was proactive and ratted him out and another had the really smart idea to attack one of the arresting officers. After Jesus was out of the picture his associates were all too eager to take over the business (such as it was) that he had built, it seems like it was pretty convenient for them to stay silent while the trial was going on.

All in all, a great case study of what not to do if you’re a CEO.