The many meetings and discussions that I had the privilege of participating in this year have brought me in contact with a range of views and opinions on the state of the world and the relevance of collective and individual responsible leadership in current and future affairs.
I used every opportunity to expound on the work and ways of working of the GRLI, as well as our vision of catalysing the development of global responsibility in both leadership and practice. Many of these discussions were held in an environment unfamiliar with the theory and practice of responsible leadership, global responsibility and related concepts, but I am yet to meet someone who does not agree with our goals as a community and initiative, and the relevance of that for which we advocate.
In these dialogues the urgent need for and apparent lack of responsible leadership in organisations and society is felt to be growing by the day. Unfortunately many of the conversations also end with a wistful ‘good luck’ as if to signal that even though responsible leadership is very important, it is unlikely to be the way the world is moving.
I always question that response, because the activities of the GRLI partnership and the many initiatives that it helps incubate, should act as living proof that responsible leadership has taken root and is making a positive difference in the world.
You might argue that my opinion is formed in an echo chamber of like-minded people and organisations, but I would argue that the sources of support and positive feedback are too varied and regular to be only from within the closest circle of GRLI influence.
Many of the initiatives and inspirational people to whom I refer are discussed in this edition of the magazine. One of these is a special tribute by Liliana Petrella and Anders Aspling to our Senior Advisor and Fellow, Philippe de Woot. Philippe passed away recently and remained, to his death, a source of unflagging inspiration for the responsible leadership movement.
This edition also reports on our 2016 AGM, which was held around the theme ‘Common Good, Common Ground’, whilst Chris Laszlo introduces an exciting new perspective on Quantum Leadership and how this project is accelerating globally responsible business. This will be a guiding theme for our 2017 AGM.
Our spotlight section includes a personal reflection from Dan LeClair, executive vice president and chief strategy and innovation officer of AACSB International. Dan’s reflections on his personal journey and its touch points in the world of responsible leadership support my views above. We are making positive progress among our associates, partners, friends and across the world through our action-oriented focus on establishing responsible leadership in both theory and practice.
John North | Managing Director – GRLI