Leading A Business That Glorifies God

September 16, 2014


KarisGroupVolunteerDay Engaged Employees at the Karis Group on Volunteer Day
Making Health Care Work for Everyone through Godly Counsel, Prayer, & Fellowship of Like-minded Peers

Bringing faith and spirituality into the workplace comes naturally for Mike Martin, CEO of the Karis Group, an Austin-based firm that provides patient advocacy and medical bill mediation services.

MikeMartinARt“As you enter our Austin office, directly hanging on the lobby wall is an inspiring painting of Jesus healing the sick. We are very intentional about glorifying God in everything we do and how we interact with our clients, employees, and vendors. This is just who we are,” explains Mike who is also a member of The C12 Group, America’s leading peer advisory roundtable for Christian CEOs and business owners.

The Karis Group was founded by Dr. Tony Dale, who through his own personal experience of the inconsistencies and staggering costs within the medical system was determined to help people find better access to quality and affordable care, To address that need, The Karis Group was created over fifteen years ago. “We are patient advocates. We help people navigate the maze of the health care system. We come alongside our clients to help them win,” said Mike.

MikeMartinFar beyond executive coaching, The C12 Group gives Mike one day each month to be refreshed, strategic, and encouraged by other area business leaders. “Since joining C12 over two years ago, I am so excited about the many positive happenings within the company. We recently conducted a strategic planning retreat facilitated by Robert Vogel, our C12 Group Area Chair. Management and key players came together for a time to focus on our long-term vision and goals through 2015 and develop a tactical plan to make it happen. We now have direction, marching orders and tangible ideas. The best part, these plans will be executed through a Biblical world-view. Being in business is certainly about profits, efficiency and providing excellent service. However, we are operating this business from a faith perspective. We are leading a business that honors and glorifies God, “ explains Mike.

Integrating Faith In, At, and Through the Business

The C12 Group has shown hundreds of business leaders across the country how to build a great business for a greater purpose and Mike is proof of this mission. Many business owners separate their Sunday from their Monday, but Mike believes C12 has given him the tools and inspiration to bridge these two days.

“C12 has been a marvelous growth experience personally and professionally. One of the greatest gains from C12 is it allowed me to open my eyes that my faith journey is not separate from my work life. My calling is to run this company. My faith is what matters to me. It defines me and who I am in the marketplace. My faith guides me in my leadership role and ability to make decisions that impact our staff and our clients. The Lord gave us this company. We want to help people who are facing tough times and be a light on a hill for them. We are unashamedly Christ followers, making a real difference for people,” said Mike.

One of the many aspects of C12 membership is the Core Business Presentation. It gives an opportunity for member business leaders to present their business in a structured, focused forum for the purpose of receiving feedback from their peer board. There is tremendous value in thinking methodically about the business and presenting ideas, challenges and opportunities to a group of like-minded Christian professionals who care.

Mike explains, “During my Core Business Presentation, among my eleven other C12 members, I was open to the fact that our company struggled with solid marketing support and I needed guidance and advice behind our two biggest products – Kare360 and The Health Co-Op. My peer members provided me with contacts and ideas. We were able to hire a virtual chief marketing officer and enlisted help in a local social media consultant. From there, we were able to develop a solid marketing plan, clarify our message and better promote our products. It has been very successful,” said Mike.

What It Means to Glorify God with Your Business

Acting as an Ambassador for Christ, Mike sees the Karis Group as a platform for ministry. Every Friday morning the company holds a breakfast Bible study. The company has rally time with the team, giving the employees a chance to pray for each other and their families. Additionally, the company has created a committee that sets aside a percentage of profits each month to support missionaries and ministry programs. If an employee wants to go on a mission trip, Karis Group will actually help fund the trip and give the time off needed.

“There are many powerful examples of how being a Christian-run business inspires our employees. We had a Hindu man on our team that converted to Christianity. When we discussed baptism, he asked me to baptize him, and I did – in front of our entire team. This was his profession of faith that he wanted to share with his co-workers,” said Mike.

C12 takes a holistic approach and helps business people achieve a healthy balance in their marriage, family life, personal health, and well-being. Mike said, “C12 has impacted my marriage. I am learning ways to be a better husband and father. I am proactive in creating deeper relationship with my family and being the husband and father the Lord wants me to be. The resources I have gained help me really shape and clarify how the Lord wants me to lead my life. I have developed solid friendships with my fellow members that I can call on for advice and receive genuine support. C12 has been one of my greatest resources enabling us to have a growing, profitable business, engaged employees, an excited management team, people becoming Christ followers, and improved family relationships.”


About the C12 Group

The C12 Group is America's leading executive roundtable for Christian CEOs and owners building great businesses for a greater purpose. C12 Members gather monthly for a unique, proven peer forum to engage in worthwhile continual learning, brainstorming, intentional accountability, and to share proven best practices, combined with eternal perspective. Members also receive monthly counsel through one-on-one sessions, an annual business review, and an online library of high-impact leadership tools. Founded in 1992 by Buck Jacobs, dedicated Christian author and CEO, C12's mission is to change the world by bringing forth the Kingdom of God in the marketplace through the companies and lives of those He calls to run businesses for Him.

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