The chaos that currently threatens to engulf all of us, but especially Europe, is a direct result of poor leadership and personal/parochial interests getting in the way making decisions for the common good and are aimed squarely at improving the sustainability of our planet.
Greece has been blamed for most of this - and especially their leadership headed by Prime Minister Papandreou. Certainly there is much truth in these accusations and many of the accusations are fairly aimed. But this issue masks a bigger malaise.
It is not only the Greeks that have over spent and over-extended their economy. If one looks deeper into the European market (and that of America) many of the same symptoms can be seen. This is not a new problem that suddenly popped up out of nowhere. It has been years, maybe even decades, in the building. The charge for wealth and the drive to support consumption-driven economies are not new phenomena.
Do get me wrong. I am very far from being a socialist. But we need to deeply consider whether the ‘boom’ of the last two decades has served us, all 7 billion of us, well? I would argue that it has been a very selective servant.
Our political leadership around the world has made short-term decisions in the interests of their own personal political lives and at the expense of building a truly sustainable and properly integrated global economy.
As this is being written the Greek Parliament is in emergency session. Papandreou is unlikely to survive. The Europeans are holding their collective breath, and so should we, for the fall-out from wrong decisions being made now will have far-reaching and long-lasting effects.
Concurrently the G20 is meeting in Cannes. Our President is there. The decisions that are made by this august group, that represents the 20 most influential economies in the world, will have far-reaching and long-lasting effects. We can only hope that the type of firm and clear decisions, and the messaging that flows from them, will be as clear and firm as those issued by Germany and France to the Greeks.
It is this kind of leadership that the world has been lacking. Perhaps it is only at a time of crisis that leaders, and especially political leaders, fully understand their responsibilities. Right now we need decisions made on the basis of what will be best and most sustainable in the long term, and what will be best for the most people. This is the essence of great leadership.
Lack of cohesion between headquarters and the operating companies.
Solution: Focused, collective strategy-building with a long term outlook after thorough diagnosis.
Collective plan; agreement on performance standards; agreement on new modes and quality of information-sharing; higher levels of trust and collaboration; a commitment to create a benchmark finance team.