A client mentioned, in passing, that they had been to China recently, and had been hosted by the CEO and executives of the company they visited, the world leader in their field. The delegation was pleasantly surprised, as their own exco was inaccessible to them, in South Africa, land of “ubuntu”.
But then the heroes of the struggle against Apartheid have, in the main, been poor examples of ethics. They were Freedom-fighters, and I guess war does not concern itself with the same morals, systems and structures that are expected of government.
We can all too quickly become obsessed with our own profile, and the respect associated with it. In reality, we are totally dispensable. No-one is irreplaceable, as Bill Gates has proved. Since Gates left his full-time role at Microsoft to focus on his Foundation, MS has advanced dramatically. One needs only to look at the “Kinect” add-on for the X-box to see their innovative genius coming to the fore again. And I’m a Linux adherent!
What makes leaders think it’s okay to treat others as less than themselves, or afford themselves grandeur reserved for kings in past ages? American car manufacturers learned the hard way that one cannot arrive at an insolvency hearing in a company jet and expect leniency!
Who is giving us a reality-check on our attitude, business plan and vision? Who is giving us helpful feedback on our path and progress? We dare not be like Titanic, which ignored more then six messages concerning icebergs in her path, and is infamous in its legacy.
How do we treat the security personnel and the catering team? Is it worthy of emulation? If not, I fear we may have succumbed to temptation, and pride may indeed precede our fall.