Posted by: Dr Churchill | December 2, 2013

Business Rising

Business Rising.

Or better put;

The Business of leadership Rising…

I’ve been a worthy Leader as long as I can remember…
I’ve always been at the forefront by leading, by believing, by fighting, and by building on one simple premise: The First Among Equals leads. And the positions change according to need and energy to serve.

Serve the many and the few. Serve All – Love All, and engage in the Business of Innovation and Change. Because Innovation married to Change leads to Adaptability.

And for that we need leaders who lead as First among Equals. And they mean it…
Because our world has many Equals and many Firsts.  Is short we all are serving in both roles most of the time.
And because every One is an Equal and can also be a ‘First amongst Equals’ and that means the real leader have to always be ready to step in the breach. To step outside of their own comfort zone, when they perceive the need and are wanted and to act as the ONE — when the time comes and the circumstances demand.

I know because I have led all kinds of human constructs imaginable.

I’ve led institutions, Organizations, Corporations, Tribes, Families, captained racing sailboats in competitions, and guided long distance treks through the most inhospitable terrains and harsh unforgiving environments. I’ve led Policy groups, Public Leadership groups, and I’ve led Diplomatic and some not so diplomatic negotiations. I’ve led leaders and followers, and led all kinds of Groups of people, folks, and individuals, by simply believing that we are all onto One Common Mission. A single organism always evolving, always changing, and always adapting, in order to survive as a whole…

I represent this rare breed of leaders that needs no name, no title, and no shingle above the door. A timeless style of servant leader. A Leader that represents an evolutionary process. A leader who leads again and again because his commitment is time bound and project bound, and the leader who makes it abundantly clear that he will step down the moment the job is done. An evolved organic creation of the global brain. A leader always morphing, always adapting to that maxim of Evolution: ‘It is not the strongest member of the species, nor the smartest, nor the most beautiful, nor the wealthiest, nor the richest in resources, not even the best endowed with great DNA, nor anything else — but the one most willing to be flexible and ready for change. That is the One that is going to survive.

And as the Grave Challenges to our sustained survival increase daily through our Ecosystem collapse practices — we need this Evolutionary Leadership to get us through the rapids of Change. Change invited and uninvited. Change Welcome and change unwelcome. Real change and the PR greenwash type of change. Change that takes your breath away due to the rapidity of it and paint drying change. Change for leaders and change for followers. Climate Change and Social Change. Economic change and World resources change. Wealth and poverty change. Change in all it’s many forms… is what Leaders address, manage, and command.

We need Real Evolutionary Leadership to sustain ourselves and to lead through the process of this inevitable Change. Change with a capital C. Change that creates a new generation of leaders capable to lead us out of the desert of our own creation. Change that demands a new class of people leaders, and a new class of followers. The new ones who are not beholden to the old system of belief and are not enslaved to the mentality of exploitation our business and state apparatus have been literally making a killing of.

Because much like the Israelites of yore had to come out of slavery and then follow a meandering course through the desert for 40 years to get to a place of deliverance — so had their leaders. And Moses was smart enough to recognize that without a new class of leaders and followers alike — there was no hope of building a State of FREE human beings. Humans led and blessed with a spirit of abundance and Liberty in the promised land. Moses knew full well that himself and all others accustomed to Slavery should not see the land of milk & honey — lest they bespoil it through their mental burden and anguish. That mental burden being the ‘Slave mentality’ that was caused from generations of slavery. A burden they all carried inside of them and a burden that informed all their thoughts and actions…

This is what Moses tried to stave off by literally blowing off all the entreaties of the old generations of the recently freed slaves for deliverance from the desert.

He managed to keep the slave habit at bay for 40 years. And when his generation of folks had perished, departed, or left the field open for the new leaders — the young ones had already arrived in the promised land. The Land of Abundance, the land of milk and honey — is nothing but a mental attitude. A mental construct that we need to adopt also to supplant our fear of want. A necessary Brain Software improvement to CHANGE our attitude towards the planet, the economy, the society and above all else to change ourselves.

Yet Moses was by all accounts a curmudgeon. A man given to spend all his time alone, visualizing, and meditating. Communing with his particular brand of God and Country. In short being a leader. He was a democratically elected leader and this is what He accomplished — survival. The very SURVIVAL of the tiny tribe of Israelites lost in the desert wilds… and led them to the point of where they could see the land of Abundance. A Vision to behold. And he instructed them to see it and live in it as Free Men.

Visualization and Visioning is really important in leadership…

And leading through personal example and upfront is what the Real leadership of the Masters is all about. That is why Moses didn’t allow himself to reach the promised land. He didn’t want to bring a slave trained leader in the New & Free State of Israel. he didn’t want to be the one polluting the land. So when the task he had chosen for himself finished — He stepped aside.

And this brings us nicely to the Metaphor to today’s leadership realities where all the leaders have to know that there is a great opportunity to address the growing discontent between want and need in all of our economic society and Body politic. Yet one needs to know when it’s time to step aside. Step aside early on right after you see the Vision and instill that vision in the organization. Step aside to succeed because the men who lead a company or a country through the tribulations of the desert and into the Promised land, should not be the ones leading the people building a new state of equilibrium.

Similarly today we cannot allow the ones who led us into troubles to lead us out of them.

First amongst equals and always revolving like the swarm of the Geese traveling great distances and always shuffling the leadership position in the triangle formation, for optimal energy, speed, and leadership.

First amongst Equals — the very first principle of Democratic leadership. And by the way the most effective leadership out there…

This is a good principle to built your house upon.
And because of my strong belief in that One simple principle, we have been running an educational project on Leadership at the Environmental University for years. And of course through this blog and previous incarnations of this method of Thought Sharing — I’ve been educating Leaders through my electronic Bulletin Boards, and Subscription Only Newsletters for CEOs and Public leaders alike, for more than 20 years now, and still haven’t gotten tired of being on the Bleeding Edge.

Wonder Why?
Because it serves the People, the institutions, and the World’s civilization, as we’ve fashioned it, and as we need to reshape it — rather well.

Yet now it seems we need to change and open up our Kimono to the General Public — hoping to affect the Vox Populi.
Now the time has come to publish the book: ‘The Art of Leadership’ book.

Of Course, I’ve written the book many times over. In segments and chapters. And it’s all here in bits and pieces and recurring themes for those of you who cherish this blog. And it’s even titled thus because I’ve always called it ‘The Art of Leadership’ because that’s what I practice it daily.
Book = Be the Moses for your people… and lead them to the promised land. Visionary leadership and Delivery is what counts.
Title = ‘The Art of Leadership’
Subtitle = ‘First amongst Equals’

And much like the Old Book it is a great read if I may be allowed to toot my own horn for a change…

And I have run the Leadership Master Class upon this Principle too, for quite some time now.
Yet the marketing of it never seemed to interest me.

However since many Great leaders, Academic colleagues, friends and Cool Folk; have asked me to publish or perish — I’ve decided to go for the former.

And to get motivated to allocate the greatest resource I’ve got, to it – Time, I hope to make it a collaborative process with this new friend of mine. A cool man named Adam G. who has the world by the ear in getting people to live their Best and who brings out the potential in everyone.

To that end we started a dialogue and an email exchange that leads to a Wiki and the completed collaborative book on leadership. All this after spending some serious time together to visualize, write, and synthesize, over the ‘change of the year’ season.

It’s not easy to fashion a good book, edit, and ready it for publishing. It’s hard enough to do it alone and yet probably much harder to do this jointly. Mainly because we come from diverse disciplines and backgrounds — yet we converge to the best. And as most of you already know — I like to go against the orthodox view of writing being a lonely art; because I like to bring together many collaborative voices when I aspire for massive CHANGE. And make no mistake this book is about change. CHANGE on the largest scale imaginable. Change that fits the world’s needs and wants. Change that makes me want to think and talk and write alongside someone else; honourably believing that together in our hearty potluck, we bring a feast to the table.

Surely the task at hand is daunting, awesome, and the benefits for the leaders plentiful, — but the honour rests within each one of us, because this is a hard and winsome push, and it needs to be a solid Dickensian story in order to be effective.

This project has some serious legs, arms, a heart and a thinking head — so we decided to plow ahead…

As we started off, Adam got me to read this Atlantic article attached bellow from Chrystia Freeland, who seems to be hanging around some of the better corporate leaders out there and has a unique perspective on their thought processes and the challenges ahead of the looming change.

Please Read On:

” Is Capitalism in Trouble?
By Chrystia Freeland — The Atlantic — Nov 20 2013, 9:08 PM ET

CEOs are growing nervous. Can they help save our system from its worst excesses?

On a Wednesday in mid-September, some 30 entrepreneurs from around the world put on boots and blue jeans and spent four hours digging out Namaste Solar, a solar-power company in Boulder, Colorado, from under three feet of mud.

The international cleanup crew was in town for the annual conference of B Lab, a global organization of for-profit businesses (known as B Corps) that choose to legally bind themselves to meeting social and environmental objectives. Namaste Solar is one of the world’s 830 certified B Corps, and after flooding of near-Biblical proportions, some assembled peers decided to lend a hand.

“As we were leaving, we got on the bus pulling away, and we saw six or seven Namaste employees having a team hug,” Andrew Kassoy, a co-founder of B Lab and one of the diggers, told me. “People said, ‘That’s what this community is about—it is about businesses taking collective action to serve society.’ ”

We are well into the age of Oprah, so there is nothing too remarkable about corporate group hugs, particularly if your company has namaste in its name. Nor is there anything too special about groups of businesspeople building team spirit through volunteer work and assertions of the social value their labors provide.

But the B Corp community is genuinely ambitious. And it is part of a wider international movement of CEOs, investors, and business-school professors who hope to transform the way business is done, creating a more “sustainable” system of capitalism. Parts of the movement are familiar. Environmentally friendly business practices have long been mainstream, particularly when they create a brand advantage, as with organic foods. Humane treatment of the developing-world workers who sew our clothes or build our iPads isn’t quite as popular a brand promise, but it is hardly novel.

What is newer is the worry about the Western middle class and the fear that capitalism as it currently operates isn’t delivering for that broad swath of society. In summing up the Colorado retreat, the B Lab team emphasized this idea, touting the “higher-quality jobs” that B Corps provide relative even to other socially minded businesses that have subjected themselves to a review of their social impact: employees are 45 percent more likely to be paid bonuses than people at those firms, and 55 percent more likely to have at least some of their health-care costs paid. B Corps are also 18 percent more likely to choose suppliers from low-income communities.

“We are going through a shift,” said Marcello Palazzi, one of the leaders of the B Corp movement in Europe. “Society as a whole is realizing the capitalist system itself is quite dysfunctional. We have created an economy and corporations that in many ways have become unethical. One response is to go out on the streets, like Occupy Wall Street. Another is the B Corp movement.”

In Western capitalism circa 2013, fear that the market economy has become dysfunctional is not limited to a few entrepreneurs in Boulder. It is being publicly expressed, with increasing frequency, by some of the people who occupy the commanding heights of the global economy.

Dominic Barton, the global managing director at McKinsey, is one critic: “Capitalism, even 150 years ago, was more inclusive; there was more of a sense of social responsibility,” he told me. Today, trust in business is declining. “The system doesn’t seem to be as fair or as inclusive. It doesn’t seem to be helping broader society.”

Barton’s concern is shared by David Blood, a former head of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, who co-founded the investment firm Generation Investment Management with former Vice President Al Gore a decade ago. “Some people say income inequality doesn’t matter. I disagree,” Blood said. “We are creating a situation in which only the elite of the elite can be successful—and that is not sustainable.”

Both men worry that if capitalism doesn’t deliver for the middle class, then the middle class will eventually opt for something else. Business needs what Barton calls “a license to operate,” and without a new approach, he fears, it risks losing that license.

“We have so many people who are suffering,” says Kurt Landgraf, the former president and CEO of DuPont Merck, and now the CEO of ETS, the nonprofit educational-testing company, where he is championing an ambitious new project to study and try to reverse declines in economic opportunity. (I consulted on the project.) “If we don’t do something to change the trajectory” of the economy, these people will eventually become “advocates for more-extreme change,” and “we as a country will experience significant social upheaval.” Landgraf told me that most of the corporate executives and board members he knows are beginning to share this concern.

Chief executives have been among the biggest financial beneficiaries of “unsustainable” capitalism. But according to Roger Martin, the head of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto (where I am a fellow), and a strategy consultant to CEOs, including Procter & Gamble’s A. G. Lafley, their lavish pay doesn’t fully compensate for being part of a dysfunctional system. Too many CEOs, Martin said, “focus on the short-term, pump up stock prices, make a bundle, and leave the company before it all comes crashing down. That is not an ethical life, that is a miserable life.” And its lack of inherent rewards, he told me, is itself one reason why many CEOs don’t stay long in their positions.

For those CEOs who aren’t quite so troubled by leading an unethical life, the sustainable capitalists have another argument—that their approach is a better way to make money over the long term. At least some evidence exists that companies that look beyond quarterly earnings, and that make exceptional efforts to treat workers as “stakeholders,” weather crises better and see higher long-term profits.

“People ask, ‘What is the cost of being sustainable to your portfolio?,’ ” Blood said. “Actually, we think that by being sustainable, it gives us a better chance of delivering returns to our clients.” Intellectual champions of this view now include Barton; Harvard Business School’s Michael Porter, the father of the theory of national competitive advantage; and Mohamed El-Erian, the CEO of PIMCO, a $2 trillion global investment-management company.

Barton precisely dates the moment Western capitalism started to go off the rails: it was 1970, when Milton Friedman first advocated maximizing shareholder value as the paramount duty of the chief executive. That notion—which reduced issues like employee well-being to “externalities” that shouldn’t concern a company’s manager—helped catalyze a divorce of business from society. As Friedman said, the job of business was business, and that was it.

What made it possible to sell this version of capitalism to society was the promise that if business were allowed to simply get on with the job, all of us would be better off. Businesses were, as Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign had it, “job creators”; burdening them with additional responsibilities would be self-defeating.

It is easy to forget that this black-and-white view of the role of companies replaced a very different philosophy. In the 1950s and ’60s, America’s business leaders widely believed they were responsible to the community as a whole, not just shareholders. They led their companies in a time when their workers’ wages increased faster than their own salaries. And they collectively advocated policies—like higher taxes—that went against their immediate class interests.

That era, of course, had roots in a messier period that recalls our own. Business in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was red in tooth and claw, and inequality surged. One consequence was tremendous innovation. Two others were periodic financial crises and violent social upheaval—including the rise of communism. By the end of the Second World War, smart capitalists throughout the West realized they had to serve society as a whole, or be devoured by it. The communist specter no longer haunts Europe, of course, but the leaders of the sustainable-capitalism movement believe we are approaching a similar tipping point in the relationship between business and society.

It is unclear to what extent “sustainable business” can solve the big problems its leaders have set out to address. Treating workers decently and paying them better would help ease the middle-class squeeze and, within limits, might ultimately improve the bottom line. But those limits, presumably, would be reached fairly quickly: Most businesses are constrained by the way their competitors operate. The decisions of individual CEOs won’t stop what’s new about capitalism in the 21st century—the job-hollowing impact of technological change and globalization.

The sustainable capitalists don’t claim to have all the answers to these challenges. But one measure of their concern is the newfound openness some of them have toward a greater role for the state. They want the government to help them—and their rivals—do the right thing, like raise wages or repatriate taxable profits. “If the rules were changed,” everyone would have to behave differently, Kurt Landgraf told me. “If they believe that those changes are in the interests of society, I don’t think American CEOs and boards would go into a massive revolt.”

Of course, global markets and global competition constrain even national action today, in a way they didn’t in the 1950s. Solutions to the problems of the middle class are neither obvious nor easy. But if corporate culture is genuinely beginning to shift, that would doubtless open new opportunities, and make room for new ideas—as well as some old ones. What one increasingly hears in Western boardrooms and corner offices is a twist on Saint Augustine: Lord, make me good, but make my competitors and my investors good, too. ”



So yes — Business is changing.

Business is Rising.

And it only happens because the Business of leadership is Rising.

New leaders are ‘arriving’ all the time. Leaders with an enlightened mindset and the tools of Visioning, synthesizing, and building, at their disposal. Fresh leaders we educate through our Master Class and who like to lead people on solid sustainable ground.

We need the young ones. Otherwise the leaders who got us this far and unfortunately led us into the mess we are increasingly finding ourselves into, cannot be trusted to solve this mess.

Our new Thought leaders come in all shapes and sizes. We train them to lead like lions and be catlike in their adaptation to change. They are great because they always find their own ways to manage change. I like to say that, ‘There are many ways to catch mice — the best one is the one that works.’

So the Companies will change and the institutions and Business will rise to the challenge… but only with proper leadership. We don’t always need new institutions but we sorely need NEW LEADERS.

And surely Change is coming as is seen by the Wall Street Occupy Movement, the B-corps, and the whole of the Third Sector, along with all the new Leaders who are great examples of leading our existing institutions.

We need not throw the baby out with the bath water, but we surely need to throw out the old blind leaders and replace them with Visionary leadership. Because we need to preserve Business as the domain of Innovation, Change, and Adaptability, amongst our Institutions, — yet we fail to see that the evolutionary nature of the Business world is without a doubt the best insurance we have for survival .

So Why do we stifle Innovation, Change, and Adaptability, in our Businesses?

I only have this to say:

Let it RISE Up.

The rest was already said by Darwin…

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