Success is Perseverance

One of the keys to organizational success is stability and continuity at the leadership level.  The organization that changes leadership is often redefining itself and setting “new” direction, but the organization with the low rate of turnover at the top tends to stay on a steady course.

I was reading the paper the other day and discovered an organization that had only 9 changes at the top since 1892, that’s 120 years or over 13 years of leadership for each leader.

Which one do you think it is:  Catholic Church, IBM, General Electric, US Presidency or British Prime Minister?

*The Catholic Church is not correct although they have had only 10 pontiffs since 1892.

*IBM is not correct, even though they have only had 9 chief executive officers, they didn’t start until 1911.

*US Presidency is not correct.  Mr. Obama is number 22 since 1892.

*British Prime Ministry is not correct, they have had 24 men or women since 1892, some of them more than once.

*General Electric is the correct answer.  They have had only 9 CEO’s since it’s founding in 1892.

Anyone can be a leader for a year or two.  But, 13 years average!  That is commitment and perseverance and the organization benefits from it.

Think of Moses, leading the chosen, critical, selfish, unhappy Children of Israel through the wilderness for forty years.  That’s four decades!  Not much for him to brag about.  There were a few miracles and a lot of sand storms and many, may burials.

Goethe said, “In realms of ideas, everything depends on enthusiasm.  In the real world all rests on perseverance.”

Are you a “hang in there” or a “bail out of there” leader?



Dr. Ron Cline helps build the body of Christ around the world. His background as a pastor, educator, counselor, missionary and author gives him credibility and rapport with the many groups and individuals he and his wife, Barbara, minister to in various countries each year. After 7 years of pastoral ministry in Southern California, and ten years as the Dean at Azusa Pacific University, the Clines’ international service began in 1976 as a short-term opportunity when he agreed to pastor the English Fellowship Church in Quito, Ecuador for two years. Those two years stretched into six years. Following that he served as the president of HCJB World Radio, also in Ecuador, for 20 years. HCJB Global, now Reach Beyond, has media, health care, community and/or leadership development ministries in Latin America, Europe, Russia, North Africa/Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia Pacific. Ron and Barb currently serve as Global Ambassadors with Reach Beyond and live in Southern California after living 30 years abroad. They travel from Southern California throughout the world. For the last ten years they have been encouraging, coaching and working with leaders in Indonesia, Cambodia, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Nepal, Mongolia, India, Philippines, Thailand, Hong Kong, Solomon Islands, Western Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Fiji, America Samoa, Australia, New Zealand, Central Asia, USA, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Haiti, Ecuador, Russia, Malawi, Ivory Coast and South Africa.

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