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Global, inclusive thinkers will shape the future - so how do we shape them?
The economic livelihood of the planet is in turmoil: debt crisis, market instability, double-dip fears. In every government and political institution, across international conglomerates and NGOs, even among the sacred spheres of monetary and fiscal policy - what is absolutely crystal clear is that the old rules have changed. The past is no longer a good predictor of the future.
What‘s needed right now are entrepreneurial leaders who can take creative action in the face of an unknown future to bring real economic and social value to all they do. It is a daunting task for business schools, but we must train and inspire these entrepreneurial leaders to create opportunities, to bravely encounter and learn from obstacles and to incorporate this learning into what they do next. This process ─ of acting, learning, repeating ─ is what managing in uncertain times is all about.
The world needs new entrepreneurial leaders because they cultivate hope and are masters at developing opportunities and creating jobs. And jobs equal peace and prosperity. Entrepreneurship today is all about giving people the tools to make it happen.
Yet, new entrepreneurial leaders will only thrive in an environment that is global and inclusive. We cannot be U.S. centered anymore. Look at any U.S. company and you will see that the majority of sales and most profits are generated from a foreign affiliate: Exxon Mobil, GE, any big company you can think of - where are they hiring? In China, in Brazil, in India.
We tell our MBAs that we want them to be able to go anywhere in the world and succeed. Building a student population that is intentionally diverse is a vital strategy in shaping entrepreneurial leaders. An entrepreneurial leader that is the embodiment of a global, inclusive community will have the best chance of making a real difference in the world.
Stepping Out Of The Comfort Zone