“Leadership has a harder job to do than just choose sides. It must bring sides together” Jesse Jackson.
David Cameron has an opportunity to show true leadership in changing the face of British politics and bringing different parties together for the greater good of the nation. His speech just now, I feel, offered real hope for a new and very necessary way of working. It will be interesting to see if he can make it happen.
It made me think of parallels in business, as we had just come from an in-house workshop for a client; where we were resolving conflict between two managers. So much of what Cameron said in his speech was applicable. How often in business do people get caught up in inter-departmental disputes, rather than focusing on the greater need of the company? This drains vitally needed energy, which is especially dangerous in times of economic crisis.
There is a need to find common ground, to be prepared to compromise and have the courage to admit when you are wrong. It is also important to recognise and praise what is right. As one manager admitted this morning, this is daunting! No one is saying it is easy, whether in settling personal or party disputes, but it is not impossible. The important thing is to focus on the benefits and goals it will bring, rather than the obstacles.
Neither Nick Clegg nor David Cameron have experience in office, but they do have the chance to demonstrate exceptional leadership skills, which will be good for their reputations and Britain. It would also act as an invaluable role model for managers throughout industry.