corporate citizenship

Co-creation through engaging

Co-creation through engaging

Welsh proverb: “She/he who would be a leader must be a bridge.”  What I call engagement leaders are, indeed, “bridges” connecting divergent types of people for the advantage of each and all.  They know that deeply engaging internal and external stakeholders in the co-creation of business changes and new initiatives is vital for any strategic action plan to be properly executed. Nelson Mandela is an archetypal engagement leader.  After 27 brutal years in prison, he emerged as a fervent advocate of engaging with the very people and institutions that oppressed him.  When released, he spent the next four years in negotiation with the stalwarts of apartheid.  As President, he continued to ensure that all faces and voices were represented in... more

Leadership: sprint, marathon & relay race

A colleague once said to me, “I stand on your shoulders.”  I replied, “We all are part of a chain of progress that stretches far behind us and will continue long after us.”  This is how I view leadership in general and women’s leadership in particular. Research by McKinsey, Harvard, Columbia, and myriad other consultancies, think tanks and universities show that organizations with diverse leadership are 35% more likely to have better financial returns.  So, advancing women’s leadership is a vital business imperative.  And, I hope men will share with all your male colleagues why “women in leadership” is not just a women’s issue. What's valid for women’s leadership applies to all of us, if we can break out of long-held but... more

Leadership, Strategy & Heart -future banks

By beCause Associate Jennifer Sertl – Sibos is an annual event that connects over 8,000 people from 212 countries from the entire financial ecosystem. Having gone for three years myself, this year marked a visceral tipping point between the traditional compliance oriented banking community and the innovative emergence of blockchain technology. Globalization and open data have made an undeniable imprint that will continue to force new mindsets across the industry. There are several experts in this space and I invite you to take a deep dive into blockchain technology and the implications with Don Tapscott. Beyond how this technology enables global business functionality, I want to highlight another technology- namely, leadership. There were three people in particular who stood out with a... more

The best of times, the worst of times

In his 1859 classic, A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens compared life in Paris and London before and during the French Revolution when he wrote “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”  And if you look at the history of humankind at any time – particularly when we’ve made tectonic global transitions: the Agrarian Age, the Industrial Revolution, and now the Digital Revolution – you also see the best and worst simultaneously. There always have been opposing forces: “dark” (e.g.: nationalism, tribalism, fear and hatred of “the other”) vs. “light” (e.g.: empathy, bridge-building, inclusiveness and striving for freedom and human dignity of all human beings). It’s no different now: we live in a time of... more

New rules of strategic relational engagement

Successful businesses have moved from transactional to relational, which acknowledges interdependence among a diversity of parties as essential for sustainable success.  Dramatic new technologies, evolving business models, environmental impact, economic instability, political upheaval, and broad-scale migration resulting from regional conflicts, now demand improved engagement between business leaders and their myriad stakeholders. A broad spectrum of stakeholders has a direct impact on your core business. That’s why I call my framework “Strategic Relational Engagement” (SRE) because incorporating meaningful relationships into your business can transform stakeholder fear and/or animosity into understanding, productivity and strategic impact.  In a shareholder environment in which annual growth is expected (achievable or not), all-out strategic relational engagement of stakeholders is the only path to satisfaction of shareholders... more

Social entrepreneurs engines for SDGs

by beCause Global Associate David Wilcox, founder ReachScale and Dr. Amit Kapoor, Honorary Chair Institute for Competitiveness India - The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), deadlined for completion in 2015, have given way to the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), launched in September at the UN General Assembly and an array of other events including the SDG Business Forum, the Social Good Summit and the Clinton Global Initiative. In evaluating over 100 presentations at these events, I was struck by: Few presentations gave any indication of serious learning from the wins — and losses — during 20 years of MDG work. A delineation of the models that work (i.e. more sustainable and scalable) is missing. In the absence of learning frameworks, presenters reiterate the same problems, now expanded to... more

Why do we have fewer Good Leaders?

by beCause Global Associate Ravi Chaudhry, CEO CeNext Consulting, author of Quest for Exceptional Leadership: Mirage to Reality , former Chair / CEO of four Tata Group companies - People all over the world wonder why there are so few good leaders who command trust and deliver results. Has the quality of leadership declined or have we become more demanding? Most likely, a bit of both. Those taking on the mantle of leadership in society and business today need to acknowledge that we are moving on to a new phase of human enterprise, driven by increased demand for social consciousness and the need to function in sync with society and environment. Several potent forces are accelerating this process, stemming from the rise of ‘knowledge-based... more

Relational skills: the secret sauce

by beCause Global Associate Andrea Learned, Founder LearnedOn — The definition of business leadership has changed, a lot, since the 1950s. The fact that there are many more women in leadership positions these days is rightly getting plenty of coverage now. But, beyond celebrating that women are bringing “it” to the table, what “it” is has yet to be been given its full due. What I’m talking about are relational skills and traits. Things like practicing empathy and understanding communications nuances are the secret sauce for business leadership success. But, while these have long been typed as “women’s ways” or “soft” skills, women are not the only ones who can tap or learn to better use them. So, why does the traditional business... more

Likes & tweets can mean real action...

I am honored to have Tech-Geekista Nikki Longo write the following guest post on power of social media: "In an eye-opening experiment conducted earlier this year, Facebook encouraged its users to become organ donors. The response was nothing short of a miracle, as organ donor registration increased by 3,012 donors on the first day of the campaign. That uptick accounted for a 2000% increase in daily donor registrations. Today, charitable organizations often use crowdsourcing via social networks like Kickstarter to fund their initiatives. Crowdsourcing in its most basic sense is receiving services, ideas, financial donations, or content by seeking contributions from a large group of people. In recent years, social media has helped nonprofit organizations find that delicate balance of asking... more

Congruence, change & continuity

I am thrilled to live at a time of such rapid and profound changes.  It’s like tectonic plates are shifting and we can scarcely envision how this metamorphosis will unfold even while we try to shape it for positive outcomes.  I tingled listening to Richard Seymour who designs for the future and Anton Musgrave who guides people to prepare for it. And yet, plus ça change: Jennifer Sertl, thought leader on corporate consciousness and author of Strategy, Leadership and the Soul, reminded me the more things change the more they remain the same. After I extolled her impressive work, she said I “stand on your shoulders.”  I told her that we were part of a chain that stretched far behind... more