Towards A New Leadership Paradigm

Whenever I think about the challenges of the World, and what the solutions might be, I sometimes get frustrated, or at least dismayed.

I see the validity of parts of the claims of so many of the “reasonable” parties in the discussion, but give up in trying to reconcile the disparate positions.

The answer is not “which one is right?”

The answer is us.

The answer is going beyond out-dated dichotomies and ideologies and being people leaders who create consensus and workable solutions.

We must be a new sort of leader, not of title or position, but of ethics and service to humanity.

We need to create a critical mass of individuals who see that we are confronted with issues 1) that demand solutions  and 2) that we cannot get wrong – the stakes are too high.*

Economic Inequality. Water Scarcity. Environmental Degradation.

These are issues we cannot afford to “get wrong.”

These are issues that require international consensus and cooperation. They also require local action and leadership. Neither is sufficient, both are necessary.

I dream of a World with more and more people embracing the concept of leadership from within. An ethos of developing one’s self and making a difference locally – first developing personal capacity and clarity and then within one’s family structure and then branching out to work and community. A belief that leadership isn’t a title or position but a mindset, a practice, a way of communicating.

Then, once capacity and clarity has been solidified and leadership becomes a mindset, practice and way of communicating, one can think bigger and more broadly.

This is our best hope in meeting the Great Challenges of the 21st Century.

*  *  *

* For example: I’ve heard that about 2% of scientists dispute the dire forecasts associated with climate change and wonder: if 2 out every 100 jet flights crashed would anyone fly? I doubt it. The question is not are those 2% of scientists right, but can we afford to risk them being wrong? It will be small comfort, in 40 or 50 years, to point to clear evidence of accelerating climate change and certain irreversible damage to say to those doubters “Told you so!”

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