Leadership Legacies

Can we Create Lasting Legacies #12 #cong21


A leader is a dealer in hope Napoleon.
Made me question some of quality a leader needs to stay relevant.

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Key Takeaways:

  1. A leader is a dealer in hope.
  2. Valued customers and will stay loyal.
  3. Someday, whistleblowers will be rewarded for their public service.
  4. Leaders in all parts of society need to be accountable.

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Leadership Legacies

By Geraldine O’Brien

“A leader is a dealer in hope”

The most optimistic from all my searches about leadership returns this quote from Napoleon Bonapart.
I was surprised to note it still felt apt in the current world. I am lucky to be optimistic by nature. I try to make the best out of a bad situation.
Having hope helps you deal with life in uncomfortable times.

Valued customers stay loyal
Knowing I am currently at a low ebb in my views about inappropriate leadership around the world and both seeing and reading about others who are equally disheartened I have come full circle on an insight I had a few years ago.

How could I develop trust in a business?

The realisation is that customers put their ”trust” in those with an unquestioned understanding that their needs and expectations will be met.

Some of the ways like the B Corp movement (1) and the Edelman Trust Barometer (1a) since 2013 usually align with what I see happening around.

As a student I worked at John Lewis in London and it was my first experience of being a stakeholder. It made me work harder as it gave me a reason to be part of something bigger. It inspired me that If ever I had my own business it would be truthful and inclusive and yes I would become a B Corp.

To build this trust the company should show transparency in their dealings and in order for customers to trust a company it’s up to leaders in business to find ways of helping them to stay loyal.

Elected politicians have become mired in underhand dealings. They too could adopt transparent measures to help show they are open and trustworthy.

Leaders in all parts of society need to be accountable
Courageous whistleblowers and journalists working together have exposed world stories that might not otherwise reach public awareness. The Facebook Files is a collaboration from Jeff Horwitz of The Wall Street Journal and Frances Haugen in which she highlights inconsistencies she dealt with while working at Facebook and reveals how powerful companies find it difficult to maintain the original ethos of the company vision.

“There were conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook,” she said during the interview. “And Facebook over and over again chose to optimise for its own interests like making more money.”(2)
Mark Zuckerberg wants to create something visionary, but perhaps the pressures of having to be The Facebook does not sit well with being a for profit company constantly having to add more countries to its network. It is hard to live up to a big vision. Facebook is not the only company to adapt its original vision faced with scaling a public company and satisfying shareholders.

Other anonymous whistleblowers gave the world the Panama Papers, the Princess Papers and the Pandora Papers all revealing the offshore and other unethical practices of many of the biggest Leaders in Politics and Business around the world.

Leaders in all parts of society need to be accountable and begin to show citizens and customers that trust matters. Perhaps that will go some way to giving citizens hope for a better future. I was excited and pleased to hear the news that journalists Maria Ressa of the Philippines and Dmitry Muratov of Russia had won the Nobel Peace Prize (3)

Someday whistleblowers will be rewarded for their public service.

In this age of disinformation and lack of transparency it is breathtaking how close countries are to losing or have already lost hard fought democratic rights.

Leaders of governments and businesses are being asked to step up to the plate to solve big societal problems, the most urgent is climate change.

Being signatures of the 17 UN sustainable goals (4.) help to give business, politicians and citizens a north star to work towards a fairer society for all.

These are some of my seeds of hope I see on the horizon and some emerging leaders who are happy to show their true selves.

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2. https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-facebook-files-11631713039

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