Caring Pops Up in the Harvard Business Review

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I’m following last night’s post about the criticality of basing our most fundamental rules on caring with a recap of a post that showed up almost at the same time. Maybe synchronicity is starting to work, and wouldn’t that be a great omen. I follow the Harvard Business Review blog of Umair Haque quite faithfully. I appreciate his iconoclastic stance on almost anything having to do with the economy and mainstream business strategy. But this one really got me excited.

He’s blaming the current financial crisis on the absence of care from just about everything.

What really caused the crisis was the fact that we didn’t care. Bankers didn’t care about the loans they issued. Boards didn’t care about bankers. Shareholders didn’t care about boards. Markets didn’t care about shareholders. Communities didn’t care about markets. Society didn’t care about communities. No one cared much about society.

The fundamental question, then, is this: why not? My answer’s simple — and probably even simplistic. But it will serve well enough to make a point. We didn’t care because we were chasing stuff. The real crisis is a crisis of nihilism: the belief that apart from stuff, nothing else matters economically. In the name of stuff, we sacrificed what mattered: people, community, comity, trust, education, skill, quality, happiness — and tomorrow itself.

You have got to read it all. All you have to do is substitute the word “unsustainability” for “the crisis” in the blog’s headline “The Real Roots of the Crisis” and you would have the main argument of my book. Then he goes to claim, as I do, that the only solution can come at the level of culture.

That means, of course, that tomorrow’s organizations must do more than just sell stuff. They must not be economically full but culturally empty. They must culturally reboot the communities and societies which they’re part of, helping them thrive and prosper in human terms.

I would like to think he has just read my book.

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1 Comments

Tiago Cruz said:

Maybe he did. Or like history tells us, sometimes the same vision just emerge in different places and sometimes at different times, without ever being related. But they didn't have so much internet or blogs in that time. I am sure this share of information will take us in the right path. At least, for some. And as emergent, the change on behavior will follow individual trends.