I was sitting in the Chapel of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst a couple of Sundays ago. It is a place of profound peace. Standing at the lectern was Major-General Patrick Marriott CBE. He was talking about the moral aspect to leadership. He quotes Viscount Alanbrooke and Viscount Slim and the importance of having a strong moral compass.We listened intently.
As we walked out of the Chapel into the square at the back of Old College my mind ran to the death in custody of prisoners during the Iraq War, that was a clear lack of leadership, but also to the lack of moral leadership in business today. Many business leaders seem not to think out the broader consequences of their actions, the lack of attention to detail (UBS) the booze culture (IT Industry), profit before people (Southern Cross).
I am pretty sure that without strong moral leadership, a well defined social aspect to the standards, values and business purpose, a “for profit” commercial enterprise will struggle to retain its place in the market in the next 10 years. It is now more important than at anytime in the past to think more broadly than just profit.