January 21, 2012 § Leave a comment
Post Co-Written By John Coleman and Bill George.
The recent Occupy Wall Street protests are only the latest of a series of global movements carried out by those who have grown cynical about leadership in business, government, and society.
There is reason for this cynicism. The twenty-first century has been rocked by scandals and failures of leaders in the baby boomer generation. In business, companies like Enron and individuals like Bernard Madoff have broken laws and violated trust. In 2008 financial markets melted down, triggering the Great Recession and costing millions of people their jobs. Governments have failed to demonstrate fiscal responsibility, creating trillions in debt and stifling global growth.
After a decade of problems, it’s not hard to see why people take to the streets or grow distrustful of those who bear responsibility for the troubles we face and who have too often put their self-interest ahead of their institutions.
But while senior leaders have often failed to fulfill their responsibilities, we see many hopeful signs that the Gen X and millennial generations have learned from these failures and are prepared to step up their leadership in these trying times.
According to a recent survey of 500 young MBAs from top business schools: