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Encourage Ingenuity: Leadership Strategy and Developing Countries Executives

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“What is thought to be the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, it is instead a budgetary recession in front of which all the fiscal measures adopted and still to be carried out by EU Governments they will turn out to be completely inefficient by, this way, just worsening the current scenario”. This, as Richard Kho explained to El Pais, just a couple of days ago, the Chief Economist of the Japanese Investment Bank, Nomura pinpoints how, as happened in Japan over 20 years ago, while private demand is being too weak and business initiative is showing to be unable to foster economic growth due to the lack of credit, only public sector could be able to boost a real positive change in contries’ economy.

But what about the private sector? Most recent theories in Management Studies underline though, how the answer to the questions this difficult times are bringing up, it lies on an efficient connection between private and public sector. A scenario in which it should be responsibility of the private one, as more agile and rapidly adaptable, to show governments how to lead Nations towards this New Normal. And here it comes again the importance of Leadership Strategy.

The password to access safely and successfully to this new era of management strategy, it has been revealed in “Globality, competing with everyone, from everywhere, for everything”, a Boston Consulting Group (BCG) work of research on 100 companies worldwide, published already two years ago, the ten years survey is still considered a cornerstone in this area of practice.

Three verbs: recognizing, rejecting, reprogramming. Recognizing our limits to then rejecting them, in order to be able to reprogram our minds and face a reality which will affect everyone and everything, and that it will be visible from everywhere. The study underlines how countries, companies and leaders of the developing nations are already far beyond the lessons of globalization, and how they shaped on its rules a completely different chessboard, where each move represents a new challenge to the developed world.

We are talking about the need to develop as fast as possible, a new business model for Companies, based on a new mind-set, new values, a new attitude and approach to reality, all this to make the private sector be able to fully address threats and opportunities.

It is constantly under everyone’s eyes how governments of the developing countries are deeply aware of which central role innovation plays in their own modernization agendas, therefore they are fostering innovation and stimulate out of the box thinking within their countries. The developed ones follow this modernization flow, but with no comparison in terms of size of investment in innovation that nations such as India, China, Brazil, Mexico, Russia and the Eastern Europe’s countries are putting on the table.

By reading the survey results, what immediately caught my attention were two of the seven steps BCG experts state as the most fundamental ones for a company to take, in order to carry out what they call, “a complete global transformation”:

_Encourage Ingenuity, because companies will need to stay open to new creative approaches, and by using the ingenuity they see in the developing economies, it will be possible to look for all kinds of opportunities, and to constantly search for ideas out of the box.

_Lead the transformation from the front, refers to the need of a strong, highly visible, and above all visibly highly committed companies leadership, able to stand up as role model, for a shift in commission boards as well as in workers mindset.

In the end, the conclusion of the study, underlines the main difference between the developing countries companies leaders, and the developed countries’ ones.

It may be that the leadership of the Western World companies seems to have forgotten, what’s the desire to improve one’s position in the world mean? Is this the price to pay for having sat on golden chairs for so long? It could be that developed countries executives had left behind the basic rule of all games: having fun and feel happy while playing.

The study shows clearly, how developing countries leaders feel that through each of their business choice they are doing something great for the future, not only for themselves, but also for the Industry itself as well as for their own countries as brand. How while looking at “Globality”, they see an ocean of opportunities for their own Nations, in order to finally be able to succeed.

While reading the results of this survey, I have started asking myself, would European leaders admit to not have lost either an inch of their own motivation and will of building something which can endure? The strive of turning their childhood’s dreams into reality? Why and since when, many leaders of the Western World have become so scared of failing? It is not a failure the real focus of a learning process? So what’s wrong in admitting everyone has the need to keep on learning?

In the end, I am just expressing my humble opinion of course, but I really think that our best way out from this budgetary recession, together with all the measures that both public and private sector will choose to apply, it will consist above all in “making enough room” for initiative, innovation, creativity and merit.

The best lesson Western countries’ executives should be willing to learn from their peers in developing Nations, it is to think that they will be working for the good of their countries as well as for their future.

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