What Price Will You Pay For Excellence?


Excellence comes with a steep price tag. Winston Churchill was willing to pay the price.

At the invitation of President Harry Truman, Winston Churchill delivered a speech at Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri on March 5, 1946. Churchill's famous "iron curtain" speech would warn America and the world of the "Soviet political and military encroachments."

Churchill was 70 when he received the invitation. He was out of office, but still very much "the world's foremost political figure." He knew this. He also knew the world would be watching, and Churchill intended to make the most of this opportunity. In his book, Churchill: The Prophetic Statesman, James Humes provides us with this interesting historical anecdote:

During the five-day cruise, Churchill had worked on his Westminster College address, using notes he had made in London. His grandson has told me that Churchill would spend an hour for every minute in an address. On this address, Churchill would triple that time.

Churchill's actions are are a reminder of the importance of leadership communication and the price for delivering excellence.

His efforts have me asking myself two questions:

  1. What leadership task is looming?

  2. What price do I need to pay to deliver excellence?

God calls those who lead to do so with zeal (Romans 12:8). Zealous efforts honor God, deliver excellence, and serve his people well.

Christian leaders know this -- and they pay the price.


Note: The quotes and historical anecdote come from Winston Churchill: The Prophetic Statesman, by James Humes. 2012. Washington, DC: Regnery History. Pages 176-177.