With so much attention currently focused on the political arena (most obviously, of course, in the USA with the inauguration of President Trump) it’s easy to become carried away in one’s assessments of the extent to which “politics” drives actual change. Of course, there’s no doubting the scale of the significance of the Trump election, or the Brexit vote, or similar “watershed moments” – but the nature of that significance is somewhat less clear, especially when it comes to the impacts on specific aspects of our lives. It’s somewhat comforting (or perhaps not, depending on one’s affiliation) to think that the person nominally in charge of a country is indeed that – it plays to our natural human desire for order, comprehensibility, justice – but in a world as interconnected and complex as this one, is it not a serious error to overstate the ability of a President Trump, a Prime Minister May and others in similar positions around the world truly to steer a course, rather than simply to keep their ships of state upright in the storm?
Look at the sourcing and outsourcing space specifically. In a number of particular areas President Trump could well have a huge impact: a crackdown on immigration and the offshoring of work, changes to NAFTA, the reversal of the ACA and other policies would affect very substantially certain tranches of the space and those working within them. Likewise, in the UK the way Theresa May is approaching the exit from the EU and the Single Market has deep significance for businesses working in and with the United Kingdom for data protection, for accounting and a host of other areas.
The world is in a soccer (or should I say "futbol") frenzy right now. Every day the best teams in the world are competing for their country in hard-fought matches where the team advancing might be determined in the final few seconds of a game. In the U.S vs. Portugal game, the U.S. was the only team in their group Sunday that could have advanced to the knockout round with a win. Instead, their fate is still up in the air, with a number of possible outcomes. This got me thinking about the lessons we could learn from the World Cup.
Leadership is key. It is easy to credit a coach or team captain with leadership, but if there is one thing I've learned in the past few years, it is that anyone can be a leader—it is not defined by your title. This is evident in any soccer game in the world at any given time. Just listen to players talking to one another on a field. Often it's the goalie or center back defender shouting instructions. They may have a lay of the land that someone in a striking position can't see. I think of the Procurement group the same way—it is often the only department that has regular communication with virtually every other business unit, allowing it insight at a high-level that is difficult for any other department to replicate.
Editor's Note: We saw a longer version of this blog a few months ago and were inspired by the support that Beeline provides to the global community. We asked if we could share it with the SIG community to inspire other companies to do more and/or to share what they do. Please read below...be inspired...and share your own wonderful work with us!
What Inspires You? I have been thinking about this question for several months now, no doubt due to the "Be Inspired" theme from the 2013 Beeline Conference. After hearing from such amazing speakers like Derreck Kayonga (the Global Soap Project) and Robert X. Fogarty (the Dear World project), I felt overwhelmingly inspired. See photo where SIG's own Dawn Evans participated in the Deear World project.
Their projects have affected countless lives around the world, which really got me thinking about Beeline's philanthropy. Every day at Beeline, my colleagues make a choice to place an importance on giving back to the community. One thing is certain: I am inspired by the generosity of others.
Typhoon Relief After thousands lost their lives (and countless remain homeless) from the typhoon that struck the Philippines in November 2013, Beeline immediately set up a fund to support relocation and rebuilding efforts. The Beeline office located in Manila spent a Saturday packing supplies for the victims of this typhoon and made the decision to cut certain budgeted items. Feeling inspired to help, several Filipino colleagues in the Beeline Jacksonville office immediately set up a Typhoon Donation Luncheon and made traditional Filipino food. Between both offices' efforts, Beeline raised $9,564.47 to support this effort.