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Albert Einstein : « everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. »
How to train 21st century leaders ? Is it still possible to "industrially manufacture" them or shall we apply completely different principles ?
Conference given the 1st of April in Dubrovnick at the WAAS conference on Leadership
Conservative times needed special mindset that are still necessary but not sufficient in transition times.
Current way of teaching is closer to an industrial production lines, manufacturing standardized brains, than to a haute couture institution revealing the potential of students.
The 21st century requires both leaders and followers to have a different mindset mostly because globalization of trade and internet made our age versatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous. The decades after World War 2 were much more linear and sequential: economies where fueled by the necessity of rebuilding Europe and then by debt financed growth.
The previous education system inherited from the industrial age was focused on individual performance, rather than team-working; masses of information to be memorized rather than fully understood and embodied (knowledge vs wisdom)… Conservative times needed special mindset that are still necessary but not sufficient in transition times.
Alternative schooling systems proved successful in the 20st century and still today, lot of education designer develop methods that are students based rather than system based.
There is 20% Highly Sensitive People are already “plug and play” for the new world.
The good news is that there is 20% Highly Sensitive People who are already “plug and play” for the new world: they balance rational decision making with intuition, arts and science, … The bad news is that in very rigid, process oriented structure such as traditional education or industrial environment they suffer a lot and are often considered as black sheep with an authority issue.
The innovation acceptance curve show us that for the average 68% of people to accept something new, 16% of early adopters are needed. So by “only” identifying those HSP and by recognizing their difference and what the values they can promote, the paradigm shift could be already there, visible and accessible to all.
In the second part of the presentation we develop the idea that no “recipe” or “one-size-fits-all” method will ever develop the qualities and virtues we need for education.
Nevertheless we propose 4 guiding principles to reorient the way we educate people in general and leaders in particular.
1 : embrace each unique potential.
Einstein’s sentence is clear enough.: « everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. ». Though transdisciplinary is key, we believe it is mostly useful when a solid base is already there, recognized and developed.
2: school of life
Enthusiasm, passion and happiness are key success factors mostly because they are the fuel that allows going through failures. This teaching of the experience shall become the basis on which theory and books help to understand patterns of repetition. In management 3.0 this ability is a key success factor.
What is the basic hygiene of the mind ?
3. Mastery over the mind
What is the basic hygiene of the body ? Simple question, but today 90% of a leaders’ job is to take appropriate decisions. So what is the basic hygiene of the mind ? Morality, mastery of the mind and regular cleansing are traditional ways to take care of one’s mind. Special meditation techniques have been purposefully designed for that.
4. Develop our ability to love
With organic rather than pyramid based organizations, the leader’s role evolve into empowering people, giving them space to try and to demonstrate their own decision making abilities. So the ability to care, to really listen and to love is one of the essential and “show stopper” qualities if not present in our leader’s education system.