Leadership, Management

Missing the Mark



Mitad del Mundo

In 1736 French explorers set out on an expedition ordered by the King to prove or disprove the prevailing theory of the day, that the earth was not perfectly round but oval in shape, with the circumference at the equator being smaller than if measured through the earth’s poles. Two teams were dispatched, one to the north pole, the other to the north of Quito Ecuador. Triangulation was done in the Andes along the tops of Ecuador’s many volcanos, measurements were made, and the exact middle of the earth was marked. Today we call it the equator, and those French explorers marked the very spot at San Antonio de Pinchincha approximately half the distance between Quito and Ecuador’s northern border with Colombia. Much effort went into these measurements and the marking of the earth’s center was heralded as the greatest human accomplishment of its day.

In 1978 a huge monument was constructed at the very spot where these explorers had marked. Several Interpretive Centers and Museums surround the great granite monument and it is today one of the major tourist attractions for those visiting Quito. Thousands come each year to straddle the line, one foot in the Northern Hemisphere, the other in the Southern. The tragedy, unbeknownst to these thousands of tourists…

The monument is in the wrong spot!

All that work, thousands of visitors who never actually accomplished their goal of straddling the equator, the cost of constructing the monument, all for naught! Problematic mapping datum and current GPS technologies have shown that the actual equator is 240 meters to the north. Thousand of tourists, coming from Quito have failed in their endeavor because of faulty information.

As leaders, we must remember to acquire all available data before making a decision. To check and double check the facts. We must intimately know our current reality and embark upon our quest with adequate tools and resources to accomplish the task with excellence. If we fail to commit to these foundational actions we also run the risk of…

Building the Monument while Missing the Mark.


So what now? How does Ecuador solve the problem? They don’t! They propagate the lie. Thousands still come. They pay for this adventure and are not even aware they have been deceived. You see, the monument is too costly to relocate or to move. It makes for nice pictures!

Ask yourself…

How vested are you in a lie?

Is it time to do the right thing?

What happens when they find out the truth?

We must be leaders of integrity.


Leader Version

Church Planter Version

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,