Our planet is far from being ok. And there’s still a lot of inequality and poverty to fight. What kind of leaders do we need to build a better future? What role can more conscious leaders play? And what is conscious leadership?
The Need To Reinvent Our World
“We believe that business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity. Free enterprise capitalism is the most powerful system for social cooperation and human progress ever conceived. It is one of the most compelling ideas we humans have ever had. But we can aspire to even more.” Conscious Capitalism Movement.
As you’ve probably noticed, our world isn’t really doing ok. Many (most?) governments aren’t really creating value and they’re often failing even at “just regulating the economic markets and protecting societies” – making it harder to believe they’ll take the extra mile. Not an easy task for sure, with the exponential developments of technology (and the long time it takes to create regulations to keep pace with it) and the need to work on policies to prevent and adapt to climate change. Still, it’s hard for many citizens not to expect more of their governments, responsible for managing the taxes we all pay hoping they do a good job and improve our living standards.
With few governments taking the lead, expectations are that it’s increasingly up to businesses to help improve society by developing CSR strategies. In fact, a Trends Report study pointed out consumers are asking themselves what (big) companies are doing for the world apart from the products or services they sell. Consumers are, therefore, wondering if companies are positively contributing and creating value to the broader community they serve. They hope businesses work based on a triple bottom line where people and the planet, also matter, and not just profit. Perhaps they’re unaware, but people expect conscious businesses with conscious leaders to take the lead.
Conscious leadership is the intentional process in which leaders take the elements of both long-term and short-term leadership effectiveness into account in the execution of leadership, according to Niekerk and Niekerk. At the same time, according to