Globalisation : Earth as We Knew It

Charles founded Adaptive Leadership in 1993 after retiring from a full civilian career with the US Army.

During his government service he served as Director of the Army's Northeast US Regional Training Center responsible for developing Federal executives in an eleven state region. He was Chairman of the Management Development Department at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, responsible for the design and conduct of in-house supervisor and manager development courses. Afterwards he served as Chief of the Organizational Consulting Office of the US Army Communications - Electronics Command.

During his career with the US Army developing managers and conducting internal organization development (OD) consulting, he introduced innovative programs in quality circles, productivity management, corporate values, participate management, leadership development, and creativity enhancement.

He has been teaching part-time in MBA programs for various universities for over fifteen years.

Charles Albano has recently published a book of business poetry, Skyline Drive: A Poetic Journey Through Business Life, 2001. The book is available electronically or in print through Booksurge.  E-mail Dr Charles Albano


I believe that our global living environment has been and is being severely degraded by the imitation, adoption, and expansion of less than environmentally responsible practices. These practices are expanding very fast now as globalization and deregulation drive them headlong into the mainstream of the world's economies. The Intensive pressures to become or to remain competitive heighten the already extant value imbalance of profit over environment. ( Only leaders can steer us through the treacherous terrain we now find ourselves in. ) I believe this is an urgent and critical priority- not a"nice to do" action item on the world's agenda.

In todays hyper-competitive scramble, cautious and deliberative management thinking is not duly applied in anticipating the environmental consequences of decisions being made. Environmental implications just don't seem to rank high enough to merit anything like the attention they deserve from leaders. I regard this as a pressing VALUES issue.

Consider - Lack of international agreement on air pollution, the surprisingly rapid growth of the greenhouse effect; water pollution, genetic engineering of agricultural and animal produce, an inability to safely store radioactive material and by-products, the impact of weaponry in warfare; aging and vulnerable nuclear energy facilities, chemical dispersion, oil spills, and on and on.

Frankly I have found that, in the past particularly, values such as "nature," "ecology," and "beauty" have never ranked high on surveys of values held by leaders, at least not those conducted here in America. That is more than regrettable because all of us are impacted by the consequences of their decisions on and through the very ecology that sustains us.

So, a proper leadership education must emphasize values, and leader thinking must stress the number one social responsibility priority, namely- sustaining the earth that sustains us. If leaders do not build earth friendly outcomes into all their decisions, we are all doomed.  Hence the reason I wrote the prose below :

THE EARTH AS WE KNEW IT

It was a self-regulating system,
a triumph of nature
and the God of Nature.
It is the first and truest home
we will ever know,
and, in all probability,
an unmatched gem.

In one short lifetime
its wounds
have accumulated
grievously.
Our life-spawning planet
has fallen prey
to the foulest imaginable
practices and philosophies.
all portrayed as rational
and in alignment with
nature and the
expected progression
of Mankind.

So - the storyline reads:
it is in the nature of things
that we endure
a succession of wars,
famines, diseases,
and natural disasters.
The affluent insist
these things are
tolerable impediments
on the road to betterment.
And all are reassured
to take comfort in the fact
that science
will heal us and the planet.

While, under cover of
drunken illusions,
unaccountable actors
run amuck across the face
of the earth
scrambling to satiate
unbounded lusts.
They weave greed
into a fabric of "truth,"
elevating it in status
until it is deemed
worthy of emulation
everywhere,
and at all times.

Any beauty and simplicity
that marked pre-modern cultures
is relegated to a past
lacking redeeming virtues.
And anyone who thinks otherwise
is a hopeless loser.

Now this ethic
is rapidly reinforced
in a competitive rush,
as, disease-like,
it stretches its choking veneer
wholecloth
across the globe
in the pursuit of
"self interest."

Already,
in measurable ways,
nature has tipped its scale
against us,
sooner and more
vigorously than thought possible.

The quality of life,
sought, promised,
and deserved
world over
is sliding past
a foreshortened horizon,
its distorted image
fading
with
the
sun
into
the
sea.

I hear a voice
arising inside
that urges us,
at the very least,
to compose an explanation
to the children
standing behind.


© Charles Albano, 2004.

blog comments powered by Disqus