Rachel Wirth describes herself as “not particularly ambitious”. And yet, amazing work opportunities seem to fall into her lap.
“For quite some time I struggled with why I seem to be blessed at work with lots of opportunities and promotions that I didn’t actively go seeking,” Wirth – a manager for a large telecommunications company – tells Eternity.
“There’s not a lot of support from a Christian perspective for people in big corporates, particularly at a senior level.” – Rachel Wirth
“Last year during COVID, I had a bit more time to assess my work life. And it was then that I accepted that there must be a reason for this.”
As a Christian, Wirth came to the conclusion that God placed her in a senior position in her company for a purpose. However, she didn’t know how to figure out this exact purpose or how to best use her God-given opportunities.
“There’s not a lot of support from a Christian perspective for people in big corporates, particularly at a senior level, that can help you apply a faith lens to how you show up at work and for the team you lead,” says Wirth, who heads a team appointed to change the way people work across her organisation.
When a new program opened for emerging Christian leaders in “secular” workplaces, Wirth signed up.
The “Marketplace” program by “redemptive change” organisation Seed is aimed at Christians aged 25-35 who are looking to “shape culture” in and through their work.
“We recognise that working in a secular context, while seeking to align your life and choices with God’s story and the way of Jesus, can be challenging,” says program coordinator and founder of Seed, John Beckett.
He notes that while there are programs supporting emerging leaders in Christian organisations and ministries, there is a lack of support for those working outside churches.
“I’m looking forward to hearing from more seasoned professionals about how they apply their faith in different work contexts.” – Rachel Wirth
The Marketplace program runs over 18 months, with four intensive sessions, monthly group coaching and one-to-one coaching from more than 20 mentors. The coaches include senior executives, board members and entrepreneurs from a range of industries, in both “secular” and Christian organisations.
“It’s a great group of coaches and I’m looking forward to hearing from more seasoned professionals about how they apply their faith in different work contexts,” says Wirth.
The program has three streams of teaching: personal and spiritual formation as a leader; how to bring about “redemptive change” in their work; and practical skills for leadership, such as people management, conflict and strategy.
According to Wirth, “It’s an amazing opportunity to spend time thinking about your own leadership style in the context of your beliefs, among a community of people who apply faith to their work in the same way.”
Seed’s Marketplace program begins in March 2021. Applications close on February 19. For more information, click here.