LeadingSmart

Practical Stuff for Church Leaders

Running a Business With a Christian Ethos

Don Flow is the leader of Flow Companies which operates 33 automobile dealerships through North Carolina and Virginia. He is a businessman who strives to weave a Christian ethos through his business dealings. He talked about this during the 2014 Global Leadership Summit:

  • Love is what should animate Christian leaders.
  • Love motivates us to come alongside others, not just exercise authority over them.
  • The company will not be more truthful or more graceful than I am.
  • Because of our commitment to the customer, we intentionally limit our profit, regardless of how easily it would be to make more money from an uninformed guest. This is driven by our commitment to neighborly love. 
  • We care for our employees...
    • We have an emergency grant fund that any employee can apply for, confidentially. This money does not have to be repaid.
    • We offer a $3,000 scholarship for the kids of all our employees.
  • We serve our communities...
    • Every dealership finds ways to serve its' community.
    • We pay for our employees to volunteer for any nonprofit during work hours.
  • We use the acronym SERVE to illustrate that leadership flows out of who we are, not just what we do.
    • S=Show respect -- every person deserves to be respected because they are made in the image of God...not because they do something to deserve it. There is also inherent significance in every job.
    • E=Earn Trust -- in the heart of trust is truth, and a willingness not to be self-seeking. Everyone wants to know, "Are you for me?"
    • R=Reach for Perfection -- we must reach for excellence, but be a people of grace.
    • V=Value input -- every deserves to have value to the process, differing opinions matter.
    • E=Energize others -- purpose, significance and community energizes others.