People often ask Julie what it is like being a preacher’s wife.
But for five days last week, the tables were turned & the roles were reversed, and I filled the role of Vice-President’s husband.
Julie is a VP of Sales for BSN Medical, a German-based company specializing in bandages, casts, and splints. Last week about 50 employees and their guests traveled to a seaside resort for five days of what they call a “sales incentive” trip.
So here are some takeaways from my time in the shadows, supporting the one in the spotlight:
1. People skills still matter more than anything else. Those selected for the trip all have persuasive skills when it comes to selling and leadership skills when it comes to managing. Regardless of how high tech our culture becomes, people skills will still be the most important of them all.
2. Terminology matters. So what we were supposed to call all those folks who, like me, came with the BSN overachievers? Not all were married partners, so spouses was out. Not all were even romantically connected, so significant other wouldn’t work. Company leadership settled on favorite people. And told us repeatedly that if it wasn’t for us “favorite people,” the BSN employees couldn’t have the success they do. I’ll take it.
3. How did I ever travel away from church before email? I know I took vacations and trips back in the 1990s when I pastored in Monroe but before there was email. How did I do it and how did the world continue to rotate on its axis? Just fine, apparently. Which I would do well to remember during my times of email anxiety away from the office.
4. I am thankful when NOT called upon to pray. A couple of times, just as a large meal was beginning, I prepared for the worst: “And now, we’d like to ask Rev. Talbot Davis, Julie’s husband, to ask a blessing over our meal.” Those awkward moments are among my least favorite in ministry. Fortunately, BSN leadership was sensitive enough both to me and to those who may not pray at all not to ask me to fill that role.
5. Any time the schedule or activities didn’t suit me exactly right, I remembered: oh yeah, this is a free trip to a seaside resort, all made possible because I married well. That put an end to complaining before it ever began.