Is Everyone Above Average?

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
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David Rupert here from Red Letter Believers with a reality check.

Radio comic Garrison Keiller has told the joke hundreds of times about the fictional town of Lake Wobegon, “where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.” We might laugh about it, but deep down, in our own fictional towns, we think it’s true. Our children never deserve a C, our driving is better than every other driver, and we are simply smarter than everyone else out there.

The workplace is an intriguing study of self evaluation, especially at performance review time. How many of us would rate ourselves in the lower echelon? We think we're at least as good, if not better than every everyone else. In a Business Week survey, some interesting results came out about workplace esteem. When they asked managers “Are you one of the top 10 percent of performers in your company,” 90 percent of them said, “yes.” Do the math and something doesn't add up. Drilling down, the survey shows that 91 percent of men answered “yes,” as did 89 percent of women. Those over the age of 55 were the most confident, with 93 percent answering yes. Middle managers scored the “lowest” with a paltry 84 percent. It seems that managers have quite the elevated opinion of themselves. And I’m sure a poll of rank-and-file workers would show similar elevated results.

To be candid, we all work in Lake Wobegon. This kind of attitude is certainly not confined to the workplace. Honestly, most of us think we are pretty special in school, in our neighborhood and in our social circles. Romans 12.3 says this. “...Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you." Do we need a reality check?

Post by David Rupert, a High Calling blogger who also blogs at Red Letter Believers.

Reaching Hands' photo by Erica Hale, These Three Remain, Used with permission.