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Posted by on Dec 30, 2016 in business, Economy, Work | 0 comments

Investments for the Kingdom

Investments for the Kingdom

Eventide Funds has confounded the investment world with its success—and it’s biblically based principles. Not long ago, when reporters wrote about Robin John, the cofounder of Eventide Asset Management, a subtle snicker rumbled under the surface. One called him “The Believer”; others pointed out the odd language on his Boston-based mutual fund company’s website: business as an “engine of blessing” and “biblically responsible investing.” Theology as the foundation for picking stocks? Is this guy for real? Today the murmurs seem to have faded, and for good reason. Since its launch in 2008, Eventide’s flagship mutual fund (a pool of money professionally invested in stocks, bonds, and other securities), the Gilead Fund, has given shareholders a 13.70 percent annualized return as of September 30, 2016, compared to 9.03 percent for the Standard & Poor’s 500. To put that into perspective, an investor who put $10,000 into the fund at its launch would be worth $26,050 today. The Gilead Fund has been covered as a top performer by The New York Times,...

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Posted by on Dec 23, 2016 in business, Economy, Work | 0 comments

We All Proselytize

We All Proselytize

  “Kelly, what does proselytize mean?” “Evangelize, but with negative connotations.” I had to ask my wife last Sunday night because the word came up in a discussion with a local Christian entrepreneur. I’ll paraphrase what he said: “In my company, we believe in the power of entrepreneurship to create flourishing communities. And I’m very open about my Christian faith with my employees when it comes up. But I would never engage in proselytization.” When he said it, I mostly agreed. The word just sounds like rude, arm-twisting – or possibly even an illegal activity. Encroaching on other people’s faith makes many of us feel uncomfortable at worst, and often offended. It’s usually a good way to seriously tick off your co-workers. But what does “proselytize” even mean? I looked it up in the dictionary and here’s what I got: “pros·e·lyt·ize ˈpräs(ə)ləˌtīz/verb: convert or attempt to convert (someone) from one religion, belief, or opinion to another.” Well, that’s interesting. This word simply means trying to change somebody’s beliefs or...

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Posted by on Dec 14, 2016 in business, Economy, Work | 0 comments

Nourishing the World: Spending an Evening with Dan Dye, CEO of Ardent Mills

Nourishing the World: Spending an Evening with Dan Dye, CEO of Ardent Mills

  As we walked into the kitchen, our senses came alive: the smell of freshly baked bread, the shine of stainless steel appliances, the smile of Chef Daniel Marciani, and the sight of risotto, chocolate quinoa desserts and caramelized spread. We felt like we had just walked into Babette’s Feast. The food was the unexpected capstone of an evening the 5280 Fellows spent with Dan Dye, CEO of Ardent Mills, the largest flour producer in the country.  Ardent Mills, a new company that was spun off from ConAgra, CHS, and Cargill just over two and a half years ago, has 42 production facilities in the US, over 2,000 employees, and – get this – serves an estimated 100 million per day with their products. Chances are, if you ate any kind of bread product today, you are being nourished by Ardent Mills. As we gathered around the conference room to hear Dan’s story, he candidly shared about life as the leader of a $4-billion-year company: the advent of his...

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Posted by on Nov 29, 2016 in Economy, Work | 3 comments

Business Travel Have You Exhausted? Bring a Kid

Business Travel Have You Exhausted? Bring a Kid

  Traveling for business is tough. For most men I speak to, the time away from family and on the road is usually an emotional, spiritual and often physical black hole. My friend Danny recently came back from a business trip. Bleary-eyed, he shared that the meetings were poorly planned, his flight was delayed – and it took him at least two days to recover from a feeling of exhaustion after getting back to his wife and four kids.  And his family was a mess as a result of his week-long trip. Another friend, Andrew, sent a group of men an email, “I’ve been asked to head up a church group specifically for guys whose jobs have them on the road frequently. Those of you who travel regularly know that it can be challenging to get connected with other men while traveling. We also want to help strengthen men in the face of temptations that often present themselves while away from home. Do any of you have recommendations for a...

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Posted by on Nov 10, 2016 in Economy, Work, World | 0 comments

Care About Refugees? This Greek Yogurt CEO is Hiring Hundreds of Them

Care About Refugees? This Greek Yogurt CEO is Hiring Hundreds of Them

  Hamdi Ulukaya, the CEO of Greek yogurt brand Chobani, is showing the world – including Christians – how to treat refugees. Since 2007, he has hired hundreds of refugees from all over the world, and currently employs over 300 refugees across his company. In a cultural moment when more refugees are drowning in the Mediterranean than ever before, Ulukaya has, in the words of a recent Global Citizen article, an astonishing amount of moral clarity: “He understands that refugees are fleeing tremendous hardship and just want to be given a chance to begin or resume a normal, healthy life. His workers have escaped death. They’ve seen family members get killed or have been forever separated from their families. They’ve endured years of uncertainty and fear. Now, they just want to be normal.” A Kurd from Turkey, Ulukaya knows what’s it like to be oppressed. Despite significant backlash against hiring refugees in the US, he continues to advocate for refugees and give them job opportunities as a way to rebuild...

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Posted by on Nov 7, 2016 in Economy, Nonprofit, Work | 1 comment

The “Culture Hole” in Our Annual Giving

The “Culture Hole” in Our Annual Giving

  So many charities, so many choices. This time of year, year-end fundraising appeals pour into our mailboxes. How are we to decide between the many worthy nonprofit causes that are asking for financial support? If you’re anything like Kelly (my wife) and me, you have to make this choice carefully. We’ve set aside a certain amount each year in our charitable giving budget, and we want our donor dollars to make an impact. For us, there are two giving categories that won’t budge anytime soon: the local church and the poor. We believe we have both a duty and a joyful opportunity to support our local church (Littleton Christian Church) as it proclaims the gospel to our community and nonprofits like HOPE International that are serving the poor and marginalized throughout the world. I believe these two categories should be universal priorities for Christians. But I think many Christians have often overlooked a third category for charitable giving: culture. Actually, I believe the culture category is necessary considering...

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