• Tuesday, March 05, 2024
businessday logo


Jesus Christ: The author, finisher of contingency theory & practice

Jesus Christ: The author, finisher of contingency theory & practice

My last intervention was about a month ago, when I X-rayed the post-election pockets of protest and warned the arrogant political dealers to take note of what happened and is still happening in France, Tunisia, Egypt Sir Lanka, Hongkong and Senegal as well as the EndSARS and recent Cash-riots, and avoid the risks of taking the people for granted.

Since then, I have been MIA (Missing in Action) because I was on leave, returned to my roots (Igbo-Ukwu) and got entangled with the activities usually associated with ground zero: funerals, weddings, meetings, and social visitations of all sorts.

I was particularly engrossed with the funeral of Honourable Joe Omeokachie Ogbonnia( 103years ) and the centenary Birthday celebrations of Ide JNC Ezeife, a teacher of teachers, community leader, pillar of the church and the last man standing in the Idu Cabinet. In effect my missing in action is my fault and for this I am a penitent.

One problem with this commentary business, beyond breaking your head on which issues are worth commenting on, is that once you miss an hour, it becomes very difficult to determine where and how to start because a lot of waters must have passed through that mysterious bridge. Since I closed shop, a lot of ‘news-worthy news’ attempted to pass me bye.

This includes the revelation by the great LAI that INEC deliberately shut the BVAS, the DSS hoopla about interim government, almost one year after Afe Babolala had suggested it opendentially (19/4/22) and treason allegation against Obi, and the deconstruction of fascism by Wole Soyinka.

There were also an unfortunate turn of events as APC that orchestrated and benefited from the coordinated intimidation, violence and butchery in Lagos started complaining of Wike’s chicanery in Rivers State; Police statement, supported by PMB, that it was a peaceful poll and their advice to ‘us’ to prosecute Oluomo if we found him guilty, and at the same time, seeing Oluomo’s xenophobic outburst as a joke but that of one of these Eze-Ndigbos as treasonable. There was also our faster and steeper descent into Courtuocracy as 1044 cases are pending before the tribunals!

We also had the opening of Ebonyi State N36bn airport, a state that has 56% poverty rate; the stoppage of the Census after NPC had mobilised 98%, the stoppage of the fuel subsidy withdrawal (by a President that described subsidy as a scam) after $800m was already borrowed for palliatives, 10% of which would go into consultancy; the alleged bouncing of Joe Igbokwe from Bourdilon and exclusion of ALL Okoro’s from BATs 29th May Committee; the embarrassing rescue effort from Sudan for which $1.2m was expended, increasing incidences of kidnapping and banditry, several last minute ‘severance deals’, (including NDDC’s $15bn rail line deal); 40% increment in salaries which excluded lecturers and doctors, the macabre dance at Adamawa where Binani proved that what a man could do, a woman could do better, the inflation rate of +22%, and PMB’s plea for forgiveness from Nigerians after he had declared that he was the best President in town.

The chief BATist disappeared immediately after the (s)elections, was shown with a 2019 picture breaking the fast with PMB in 2023 and was jubilantly welcomed by the A3W(Association of White Witches& Wizards), who or which announced that he won the elections in the spiritual realm and subsequently deployed a special squad of 300 for his protection. There is also what Pat Utomi referred to as nihilistic rage in Sudan, (Utomi: When democracies fumble and tumble) unfortunately sponsored by our friendly foreign investors, who love us more than we love ourselves.

Some of these items may still show-face along the way but I just listed them here ‘in case of incasity’! However, I am still in the Easter mood and I still remember Christ and His resurrection, but today, from a different dimension. Two decades ago, I ran a five-part series on the ‘Biblical Foundations of Management’ (BusinessDay,13/8/03, 20/8/03, 27/8/03. 2/9/03 and 9/9/03).

I started the series with the story of Moses, the FIRST Manager, and his father-in-law, Jethro, the first management consultant, on the basis of what transpired in Exodus, 18: 13-24. Moses was single-handedly managing the affairs of the newly independent Israeli community of 600,000 men. He was thus on duty 24/7.

Jethro visited and felt (and rightly so) that it was a very suicidal task for one man and therefore advised him to divide the people into groups and sub-groups and appoint capable and properly educated leaders who would manage their problems and refer only difficult cases to him.

An analysis of this consultancy package shows that it was indeed Jethro who “invented” the currently popular management principles/practices of departmentation (alphanumeric), delegation, empowerment, and management by exception. ( see also Ik Muo( 2019): Management Principles, Practices, Processes; Enugu, Potter Press, p26).

This was an outcome of a comprehensive study of the Bible with a managerial eye, after I had seen several management principles and practices contained therein. Since then, I have continued to read the BOOK with two eyes: the spiritual and the managerial, and I have come to realise that Jesus Christ, whose death and resurrection we celebrate this season is the author and finisher of Contingency Theory and practice.

The contingency theory believes that there is no best way of doing anything since it depends on the circumstances. It applies to various aspects of management because there is the contingency theory of leadership, contingency theory of organisational structure and contingency theory of general management.

Thus, managerial practices depend on the circumstances(environment) because given situations influence managerial behaviours. Thus, as far as management is concerned, there is no best way to manage; rather it depends…. Managing thus differs among organizations depending on circumstances but differs for the same organization over time since circumstances change with time.

The origin of this theory can be traced to the Ohio and Michigan studies. The environmental factors usually mentioned in relation to contingency theories include technology, customers, government regulations, employees and unions, the general public and the demand-and-supply scenario.

I reached this verifiable conclusion by the way He handled the same situations, differently in different circumstances and we start by his miraculous healing methods. Some he spoke to, some he touched, some he applied mixed mud, some he instructed to tell no one, some used to teach lessons and some he cured by remote control.

In the Old Testament, Tobit was healed with the gall of a fish (Tobit,11:7-8). However, when Jesus came on board, he smeared the man’s eyes with a combination of mud and saliva (John, 9:6-7). At the pool of Bethesda, He commanded the man to get up and walk there and then (John,5) but in another case, he took the man away from the crowd, put his finger in his ears, touched his tongue with spittle and issued a commanded(Mark, 7:32-34). For the Canaanite woman, He didn’t even see the sick child; He just said, let your desire be granted (Mt15:21-28) just as he did for the servant of the Centurion (Luke,7:1-10) But for the 10 lepers, He directed them from afar, to go and show themselves to the authorities, and not to tell anyone (Luke,17:12-19). If these do not evidence the application of contingency theory, then tell me what does!

Read also: The role of communication in conflict management

Another exhibition of his mastery of the Contingency Theory and practice was his cat and mouse games with the Pharisees, Sadducees, scribes and lawyers, who out of fear, pride, ego and the usual change-resistance, ‘counter-mooted’ everything that Jesus did and took several ingenious steps to trap him.

On one occasion, he gave them a parable (Luke,5:36-38); at other time, he withdrew from them ( Mathew, 12:15), while occasionally, he deployed diplomacy and logic (as in the allusion to Caeser, Mt, 22,15-22); Mark, 11:27-31). He also tongue-lashed them as when he called them a wicked and adulterous generation (Mt 12.39), brood of vipers (Mt 12:34) and chastised them for not repenting despite His various deeds (Mt,11: 20-24).

At times he was even rude as when he referred to Herod as that Fox (Luke 13:32). On one occasion, he got angry and violent, that he flogged the mallams engaged in currency exchange and sundry commerce in the temple yet he subsequently was passive as a sheep led to the slaughter (Acts, 8:32) and silent before his executioners (Matthew, 26:62-63).

And at other times, he refers them to history( Luke,6:3-5; Mark.2: 23-28) In one instance, he cursed a fig tree (Mark,11:12-25) but in another instance, he had mercy on mere weeds (Matthwe,13: 24-30). When he sent the disciples away in batches, he instructed them not to go with staff, bag, bread, money or extra shirt( Luke,9:3). But later, he directed them to take the purse, sack and other necessities of life (Luke, 22,:35).

In Mathew 26:52, he told his disciples that they that live by the sword shall die by the sword but earlier in 22:36, he had told them to get their swords, even if it meant selling their cloaks to acquire what was the WOMD (weapon of mass destruction) then!

Since this is not a spiritual or religious discourse, let me spare my readers on why and how he approached the same issues differently on different occasions. However, it is indubitable that he shows an enviable expertise in the application of Contingency Theory and Practice. Anybody who disagrees with this assertion should go to court!