Advice for Working in a Secular Company

by Richard Todd, CEO, Co-Founder & Principal, Innovest Portfolio Solutions

The secular world pushes Christians into quietly practicing their faith only within the walls of their homes and the churches where they worship. More companies are telling their employees that their crosses and crucifixes must come off their walls and that the topic of religion should not be broached. While, for some, the answer may be to find another employer or start their own business, for others that is not tenable. For all Christians, we must be a beacon of light in this evolving secular world, being “in” the world, not “of” the world by letting others see that we are different – not by preaching, but through our actions and behavior.

Following are five helpful tips for Christians that are subject to secularism in the workplace.

  • Prayer

“Our Lord wants you to be holy in the place where you are, in the job you have chosen for whatever reason.” – St. Josemaria Escriva

Develop a routine of praying for your employer and colleagues, that they become open to religious freedom and to the love of Jesus Christ. Keep prayer cards and devotional readings in your desk or personal space or use one of the outstanding religious apps that are available today. Start a break with a prayer and pray before each meal while at work, whether at your desk or in a breakroom. Don’t be ashamed of the Sign of the Cross. Finally, pray for yourself, that you have the courage to be a light in the workplace. Ask St. Joseph for intercession.

  • Almsgiving

Truly I say to you, as you did it to the least of my brethren, you did it to me. (Matthew 25:40)

One of the most rewarding things that we do at my firm, Innovest, is monthly volunteering to offer dignity and support to those that are suffering. We have packed boxes of medical supplies to be shipped to poor communities for Project Cure, fed the homeless at the Denver Rescue Mission, and simply offered conversation to those on the street with Christ in the City. You can do that in your workplace – coordinate weekend outings with colleagues to do something similar. It will open their hearts, and your outings will grow by word of mouth. Don’t be surprised if your employer becomes involved and offers financial assistance or a free paid day to support your effort. They’ll recognize the positive impact on company culture.

  • Positive Attitude

Positive thinking is holy thinking.” – Chris Stefanick

Nothing can be more taxing on a company than a negative attitude. Negative thinkers are hard on company culture and becomes a time commitment for managers. It causes resentment. Conversely, optimists can cope with the stress that will inevitably occur in any job. People are drawn to positive thinkers, and through strong leadership and joyful outlook, so much more can be accomplished. At Innovest, our year-end bonuses for our employees are largely dominated by one’s commitment to a positive attitude.

  • Hard Work

Hard work always yields its profit, idle talk brings only want. (Proverbs 14:23)

God created us for work and expects us to do our best. Working hard brings a great sense of dignity and accomplishment. The common denominator of the most successful people in business is not their education, business plan, or inherent genius; they’ll tell you that its “hard work!”

Of course, there will always be challenges in the workplace. Ask the Lord for strength and ask Jesus to lead you. Some of our greatest accomplishments are borne from difficult times. This is why He gives them to us.

  • Serve

“The worker’s first duty is to serve the work.” – Dorothy Sayers

Be completely dedicated to your customers and your teammates. If you are constantly serving your customer, great personal satisfaction will come from it, and there is no way to serve the customer without serving your colleagues in the same fashion. At Innovest, “dedication to the client” is a core value of our firm. We stress that being dedicated to the client means that we must “pull each other up” – those around and beneath. Help your colleagues by teaching, mentoring, leading, and being a great example for them. Our efforts are to turn a “job” into a “vocation,” and we emphasize that the best way to get promoted is to have someone beneath you that you have mentored and trained to ably take over your responsibilities.


It can be difficult for Christians in the workplace. Msgr. James Shea, president of the University of Mary, explains in his book From Christendom to Apostolic Mission about our struggle in an increasingly secular world. By standing out, with virtue and character, the bushel basket can be lifted, and the light can be bright. Msgr. Shea says, “It is therefore important for those who are members of Christ’s body, who share in His divine life and so called by Him to be the light of the world (Matthew 5) to take thought for the times in which they live and to devise pastoral and evangelistic strategies suited to those times.” The workplace, even in a highly secular firm, can be a terrific place for evangelization!

Richard Todd is the CEO and Co-Founder of Innovest Portfolio Solutions. He has more than 35 years of experience in investment consulting and currently provides consulting services to institutions and families. He has been a frequent author on fiduciary and investment related matters and has served as a trustee on a number of boards serving religious organizations.

More on Innovest can be found at Rich can be reached at or 720-586-6353.

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