Spoke recently to the incoming MBA class at The Goizueta School Of Business at Emory University. The panel included several senior executives from large corporations. I was the only consultant or external practitioner on the panel. After the session, one of the visiting participants came up to me and made the following comment. She said, “you have a remarkable ability to summarize and simplify the complex issues being discussed. You make it so plain.”
I received the comment with a thank you. The fact is that I get that comment from people quite often. So I have come to accept that as one of my gifts. In fact, I find myself often, reviewing voluminous text and summarizing it in my head or in my journal as a short pithy summary phrase or sentence.
The message of the Bible (on the spiritual living).
The core message of the Bible is this: love (love God, love others, love yourself). Everything else in the Bible is intended to illustrate how you do that.
The essence of leadership.
Leadership is the act of effectively selling a vision or a compelling future to yourself, to other individuals, or to groups. Everything else that is written about leadership (over 16,000 books and counting) are merely attempts to describe how you do that.
The core message of the diversity movement is a call to recognize and acknowledge the differences and similarities that are a fact of life in any group of humans. Everything else (diversity management, inclusion, multiculturalism, pluralism, talent management, human capital management, etc.) are attempts to describe how to do that.
I recognize that these definitions may be too simplistic for some and may not resonate with others. In later posts, I plan to expand on these simple truths and invite your comments, with this proviso. Only if you disagree profoundly and conceptually, should you offer alternative language (too often we play wordsmith games that distract us from core meaning).