xiii) Five Minds

Not realizing the importance of the 5 minds to handle the future (disciplined, synthesizing, creating, respectful and ethical), ie

"...a disciplined person should embody the ways of thinking and acting that distinguish a chosen discipline(s) and no just spew forth a lot of heterogeneous knowledge about the subject. A synthesizer should put ideas together in a way that is cogent and replicable, and not merely offer a convenient or cute package. A creating mind should be original and appropriate - sheer novelty or eccentricity or instant celebrity does not suffice. A respectful mind should transcend the intolerance, displaying active interest in and affection for those who look different, including those of low status. An ethical mind must comport itself in ways that support the broader profession and the wider society - even, or especially, when those actions go against one's narrow self-interest..."

Howard Gardner, 2006a

- There is an increasing interest in ethical questions that were previously ignored. More people want to engage, ie work and live, with things that are meaningful. At the same time, there is increasing evidence that many major institutions have betrayed their purpose and encouraged unthinkable customs and practices, like conflict of interests. When senior management of these organisations are questioned about these activities, most answer with "everyone does it like that" and/or "it's always been done that way"

In 2016 Australian government regulators were saying to Boards, especially in the financial industry, to think about their culture, ie by answering questions about what the organisation stands for, its your purpose, values, principles, etc. Organisations also need to check that is there alignment between what the organisation says it stands for and what it is, ie  does it "walk the talk" (do its deeds back up the its words?) eg
- how much of what organisations says about itself is true?
- why are there gaps between what it says and what it does?
- what can be done to close the gaps? (Joanne Gray, 2016)

This involves 2 steps
i) to check the consistency of an organisation's purpose, values, principles, etc  - this involves talking to key stakeholders like customers, staff, investors, regulators, suppliers, etc.
NB There is a risk in mis-perception (see cognitive biases) or hypocrisy by the organisation in how it sees itself
ii) conduct an independent forensic examination of systems, policies, strategies, day-to-day practices like product design, remuneration systems, recruitment procedures, promotion systems, induction processes, financial accounting methods, what is reportable or non-reportable, etc.. Another way to look at this is what would a disinterested person who encountered their systems, policies and structure reasonably infer from this experience?


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