Monday, May 21, 2012

What kinds of leaders do we want to be?

Nothing inspired me as much as this.  I've had similar thoughts scattered for the longest time but never managed to string them together into such beautifully orchestrated symphony of grandeur, like The MBA Oath.  I used to share these ideals (scattered as they were) to others and many thought it was ideal but sounded extremely far-fetched.  And then I came cross the MBA Oath, a broad coalition of MBA students, graduates and advisors, representing over 250 schools from around the world whose mission is to facilitate a widespread movement of MBAs aiming to lead in the interests of the greater good and who have committed to living out the principles articulated in the oath (as follows below), and I was blown.  The idea wasn't far-fetched!  We were just separated thousands of miles apart!

Anyway, watch this video.  Open your mind and ask yourself those same questions.  And then take the oath below and stick to it :) We need new purpose not profit-focused leaders.  Welcome to World 3.0.

The MBA Oath

As a manager, my purpose is to serve the greater good by bringing people and resources together to create value that no single individual can build alone. Therefore I will seek a course that enhances the value my enterprise can create for society over the long term. I recognize my decisions can have far-reaching consequences that affect the well-being of individuals inside and outside my enterprise, today and in the future. As I reconcile the interests of different constituencies, I will face difficult choices.
Therefore, I promise:
I will act with utmost integrity and pursue my work in an ethical manner. My personal behavior will be an example of integrity, consistent with the values I publicly espouse.
I will safeguard the interests of my shareholders, co-workers, customers, and the society in which we operate. I will endeavor to protect the interests of those who may not have power, but whose well-being is contingent on my decisions.
I will manage my enterprise in good faith, guarding against decisions and behavior that advance my own narrow ambitions but harm the enterprise and the people it serves. The pursuit of self-interest is the vital engine of a capitalist economy, but unbridled greed can be just as harmful. I will oppose corruption, unfair discrimination, and exploitation.
I will understand and uphold, both in letter and in spirit, the laws and contracts governing my own conduct and that of my enterprise. If I find laws that are unjust, antiquated, or unhelpful I will not brazenly break, ignore or avoid them; I will seek civil and acceptable means of reforming them.
I will take responsibility for my actions, and I will represent the performance and risks of my enterprise accurately and honestly. My aim will not be to distort the truth, but to transparently explain it and help people understand how decisions that affect them are made.
I will develop both myself and other managers under my supervision so that the profession continues to grow and contribute to the well-being of society. I will consult colleagues and others who can help inform my judgment and will continually invest in staying abreast of the evolving knowledge in the field, always remaining open to innovation. I will mentor and look after the education of the next generation of leaders.
I will strive to create sustainable economic, social, and environmental prosperity worldwide. Sustainable prosperity is created when the enterprise produces an output in the long run that is greater than the opportunity cost of all the inputs it consumes.
I will be accountable to my peers and they will be accountable to me for living by this oath. I recognize that my stature and privileges as a professional stem from the respect and trust that the profession as a whole enjoys, and I accept my responsibility for embodying, protecting, and developing the standards of the management profession, so as to enhance that trust and respect.
This oath I make freely, and upon my honor.

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