I recently delivered my annual talk on crisis meta-leadership at MIT’s business continuity executive education program. As always, it was a great group representing businesses and government agencies from around the globe. One of the participants, Carlos Requena, also writes for El Economista in Mexico and so I’ll let him share his perspective of the presentation and how it relates to the situation in Mexico via one of his regular columns (translation via Google Translate):
Mexico suffers from serious and huge gaps of legality, health services, quality education, decent jobs, housing, security and even Olympic medals. It is easy to confirm this diagnosis by many national weaknesses, those that own Secretary of Social Development, Jose Antonio Meade, has described as unacceptable. The tricky part is to locate the media and the most honest to overcome wills.
Structural reforms promise, the same as the laws and programs that offer shelter; however, nothing gets better, nothing is solved. Mexico is overrun with corruption, impunity, narcissism, disbelief, distrust and anger. This alarming and distressing situation demands-it requires-and genuine leadership. Something similar to that of ancient Rome’s auctoritas (authority) recognized by the social legitimacy that came from the wisdom and integrity of the person’s worth and undeniable moral force; a totally different capacity potestas (power) supported only in the legal power, strength of the state, the appointment or formal charge.
Today, the moral leaders lose to the formal, although auctoritas leaders are those with the greatest impact and positive influence on communities and countries. Here and now legitimate leaders needed, promoters convenient, clear, crisp and genuine advocating decisions that are good for the people.
Eric McNulty, leadership and resilience catalyst, believes that leadership cultivation is fundamental in a complex and dynamic world. He refers to one that is effective because it is rooted in a mental state that promotes mastery of emotions and self-control.
McNulty, who has done much of his work teaching at Harvard, talks about a leadership that involves at least three mental changes:
• Recognize the complexity and nonlinear character of relations between people.
• Achieve clarity of goals and values to suit the environment and coping with uncertainty consistently, and balance interests of short and long term.
• Take possession of own leadership development, everyone understand their strengths and weaknesses, and identifying where and when they can be the most significant contributions.
Leaderships catalyzing good decisions, favoring an efficient time management and provide helpful information flows cause changes, manage expectations and prevent harmful uncertainties … Those leaderships well, that focus on solutions and results, regardless of the effort required, it is those that Mexico requires especially if the goal is to get out of underdevelopment once and end the constant and harmful corruption crisis, depression and anger in which many generations have lived.
Beyond theory, Mexico has indications of the presence of leadership, mainly in business and non-governmental organizations. Take for example, the new president of the Business Coordinating Council (CCE), Juan Pablo Castanon, who rightfully demands a stop to the cuantiosísimos damage caused by the CNTE. The CDC says that while reconciliation is essential, “there will be a strong, lasting and fair solution if it is accompanied by the violation of law and is tolerated if the rights of third parties are violated.” So the call is clear.