Another world is possible: but it depends on us

Another world is possible: but it depends on us

You just have to look out the window of the world, to be aware that we live in a time full of conflicts, tensions and loss of values.

The great economist, and also a professor of ethics, Adam Smith, three centuries ago, already said that society was made up mainly of selfish beings and that this could never be changed. The first part of the statement may be true, but the second part is not at all and there are countless examples of this.

The results of cooperation

The Darwinian current has also taught us that only the strongest survive and those who best adapt to the circumstances, but history has taught us that if human beings have survived and be at the top of the chain of species, it is not because he was the strongest, but because he was able to collaborate with other members of “his tribe”. Cooperation works better than competitiveness without limits.

We are a society capable of performing the greatest acts of generosity and altruism and in turn, the most brutal acts of selfishness and evil. We are capable of giving our life for a fellow man and at the same time taking it from him. Armed conflicts are growing without end and, on the other hand, NGOs and foundations do not stop emerging in which millions of people collaborate in a totally disinterested way.

And we find a curious paradox: we feel citizens of the world, we care about people who are not part of "our tribe" or our family and at the same time, we walk towards the individualization of being. What a contradiction!

Linking philosophy with the ethical conduct of companies, the timely reflection that deserves to be made is that, we act badly, despite the fact that we know, by common sense and by natural law, what should and should not be done. What is good and what is not. Ethics and morals are practically coincident in the most universally respected philosophies, regardless of their origin and their different colors, and they intend to lead us on the right path.

The economic crisis we are experiencing is nothing more than a symptom of a much more subtle and complex process. It would be a crisis of conscience and values. We are slaves to our own miseries and to the "unnecessary" needs that we have created for ourselves.

Psychology creates the economy

When we talk about psychological crisis, it is absolutely true, since psychology creates the economy.

The prestigious Harvard economics professor, John Kenneth Galbraith in his magnificent work "The economics of innocent fraud", already warned eight years ago that "to measure social progress almost exclusively by the increase in GDP, that is, by the volume of of the production, it is a fraud, and not exactly small ”. It is necessary to expand the indicators of economic development and wealth, with others that speak of the quality of life, the physical and psychological well-being of people and, why not, happiness.

We believe that a healthy economy is one that grows continuously and we all know that this is impossible. When we speak of crisis, we are simply speaking of "collapse of the speculative economy."

In the business field, they have been gaining importance, but still much more in the theoretical than in the practical field, aspects that go beyond the mere generation of wealth and that focus on the "morality" of the different actions that are carried out. finished.

The economy is not independent of the social reality that surrounds it, and it is much more than money. Currently in the world there is enough money to end hunger all over the planet, and the question is: and why is it not done?

Why don't we act?

If we asked all the people on our planet, if they would agree to end hunger, we would hardly find a single person who said no, and then why is it not done?

To speak of crisis, for billions of people who live in immense misery, is paradoxical and hurtful. What for our society is a crisis, for them it would be the best of all worlds.

There are some “universal values ​​and principles” that, although they may be lived and expressed in different ways in different cultures, are commonly accepted by all.

We cannot be permanently trusting in the actions of our rulers and apparently leaders, since we only have to see what situation their decisions have led us to. It is the moment in which each person makes those decisions that he believes are fair, ethical and responsible. It is necessary to put in the first row, the individual social conscience.

We must be concerned with the impact of our actions on humanity and nature. We must regain common sense and dignity. We cannot destroy that which has given us life. There is no alternative and we have an obligation to leave a better planet than the one we found.

To solve the world's problems, we first have to solve our problems.

To solve the world's problems, we first have to resolve our own contradictions. What we follow is exemplary, not what we say, but how we behave. Our sons and daughters will act depending on how they have seen us behave. We must commit to ourselves.

Generosity and Gratitude

This situation will not be changed by the same leaders and values ​​that have generated it. Changing this situation will begin with the change of each one of us, by the coherence between our words and actions. The importance of two of the most powerful and transformative behaviors: generosity and gratitude.

They have managed to inoculate us with fear as a control mechanism. Fear generates distrust in others, we see them as possible rivals, and worst of all, it generates distrust in ourselves. The paradigm of fear and pain must be replaced by a more playful and creative look. A certain dose of tension is positive, it keeps us alert, instead, terror paralyzes us, blocking all initiatives and creativity. It is the announced death.

Let us not confuse our objectives with the results and let us not value "having" over "being".
In my professional experience, I have seen young, healthy, beautiful and successful people, with a shocking depressive and self-destructive attitude, where they had all the pleasure in the world at their disposal, and were perfectly miserable. On the contrary, I have met people who face serious and great pains and vicissitudes, but their attitude and disposition is that of a happy person and committed to life.

The contrast is paradoxical and leads us to a reflection: much of humanity has lost the path of happiness, confusing it with pleasure, money or power. And we are not saying that pleasure, money or power itself is negative or bad, but definitely, as conceived today, they do not lead to happiness. As the current culture, by uprooting man from nature and not stimulating him to develop his inner world, has emptied him from the inside, making him a stranger to himself, his peers and the immutable laws of mother nature.

Author: Marcos Urarte



One of the things I try to convey when I work with management teams is that organizations must constantly question what they are doing. I put a lot of emphasis on questioning and I don't say change for the sake of change.

To survive, you have to innovate.

When we talk about innovation, there are a number of beliefs that I believe, although not wrong, are too biased. We tend to believe that innovation means doing different things, that it only occurs in technology and product and that only large companies can innovate; of course doing different things is innovation and of course innovating in technology and product is innovation. But you realize that in the end, in the vast majority of cases, innovation is not doing different things, but doing the same thing in a different way, and that the most radical innovations occur in business models, which is within the reach of any company and often does not cost money.

In today's markets, there are a number of unstoppable trends that every organization must manage, including "insatiable competition".

Markets are a relentless war. Our competitors will try to take market share from us and we will try to take it from them.

And in this reflection appears the dilemma Productivity vs Competitiveness.

Productivity vs. Competitiveness.

The main objective of a company is competitiveness. Productivity is a very important factor, but it is not enough. Productivity is the internal look of the company, but the fundamental thing, where we play our destiny will be in the external look, that is to say when the market compares us with our competitors and decides who to buy. Unfortunately, many organizations are only focused on productivity and cost reduction and end up being "anorexic" organizations, unable to compete.

Competitiveness is much more than operational efficiency (good product, right price, efficient distribution). Competitiveness is the result of the sum of two variables: "operational efficiency" and "perceived differentiation", the image conveyed, i.e. perceived positioning.

Of course, "that perception" must be confirmed with products or services that meet, or much better, exceed expectations.

There are a number of factors involved in competitiveness in all organizations. We could say that "the recipe" is unique, but what changes radically is the specific weight, the weighting of each of them. Every company must define the balance it wishes to achieve, because without this definition, it will be extremely difficult to align all decisions with the desired objectives.

It is necessary to start from the idea that if normality is understood as stability, it does not exist and will not exist.

Companies tend to pay much more for the decisions they do not make than for any erroneous decision. When a company makes a decision, even if that decision can be considered wrong, it always contains a learning experience, yes, always. When I don't make a decision, apart from the fact that there is no learning, someone else ends up making it for me. Who? My customers and my competitors. The market is sure to continue making decisions, so it is better for me to make my decisions than for someone else to make them for me. In the end, either you invent your future or someone else will invent it for you.

In this environment that has now become so fashionable and that we call VUCA, a concept that came from the military world and that has now been reconverted to the business world, in which the initials correspond to (Volatily, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity), it is very difficult to have all the information to be able to make decisions. If we wait until we have all the information, it will be too late. We have to find a balance between speed in decision making and of course getting it right, what I have called "uncertain knowledge, right decisions". But it's not easy, because in the world of business and strategy, unlike in other worlds, you don't play alone. You can make your strategic decisions, but every time you do, the market responds and acts, there is always action-reaction, and this forces us to be permanently on the move.

There are limits, but they are never the first visualization we have of them and impossible is only an opinion.