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Leaders of Tomorrow – RSA Chief Executive Matthew Taylor

As we head into 2013 it is quite clear that not many leaders understand what is happening in the world at the moment or what our next move should be. But there is a very distinct group with certain values that set them apart from the rest of the pack. So we’ve decided to start a Leaders of Tomorrow series to keep track of those special few with unique leadership qualities that we will list a bit further down.

The first leader in the series would have to be RSA Chief Executive Matthew Taylor who actually inspired this post. The new year really got him thinking about RSA’s mission to provide ’21st century enlightenment’, what the next stage of that process is, how to go about strengthening its position as a leader of social/cultural change, how to define the nature its dynamic relationship with RSA fellows, and how it can be ‘the kind of organisation the twenty-first century needs’.

A few years ago people outside the RSA would never have even been aware of all this. A Chief Executive expressing all his personal thoughts in public? That was unheard of. But now that the world has entered a new global stage, we need to look for leaders with precisely these qualities, because the new stage is all about leveling the playing field.

So we’ve put together a list of attributes you can look for to easily recognize leaders of tomorrow:

1) Genuine concern for the plight of humanity.

2) A solid moral compass.

3) Open and transparent leadership style.

4) Focused on contributing to society in a big way.

5) Promoting attributes we currently lack in society such as human empathy.

6) Not afraid to tell it like it is.

7) Not afraid of the challenges ahead.

8) Ability to develop smart concepts and new ways of presenting them.

9) No stranger to social networking.

10) Someone you can trust your life with.

Here are a few examples that demonstrate Matthew Taylor’s unique leadership style:
Article: Twenty first century enlightenment: something to build on?
In pursuing the goals of universalism we need to give more thought to the conditions which give rise to (and diminish) the sentiment which lies behind fellow-feeling: empathy.
2010-06-13 – Guardian.co.uk: Hail the 21st-century Enlightenment. Ideas don’t come much bigger
We need to live very differently, argues a bold new text. And that calls for nothing less than a revolution of the mind… Empathy can save us, believes Taylor; it is vital to negotiations on how we share out natural resources, and vital to ensure harmonious co-existence on a crowded planet. But he acknowledges: “There are reasons to ask whether the process of widening human empathy has stalled, and just at the time we need to accelerate it.”
Animation: Old 18th Century Enlightenment and Developing a New 21st Century Enlightenment that is Built on Empathy
(Taken from The Center for Building A Culture of Empathy)

To sum this up we just want to share our comment to your Mission and Myth post:

21st century enlightenment is a great mission – and the direction must come from the top of the pyramid – which is you.

The focus needs to be on using all available channels to educate society about the transition the world is going through at the moment. Understanding the forces operating on our world. There is nothing mythical about it, all the scientists have reached the same conclusions, they simply do not know what to do with the new findings. They haven’t managed to put all the pieces together yet and see where all this is headed, and what exactly needs to be done.

Once you have the direction the next step would be to partner with the BBC or some other organization that can get the information out to the widest possible audience – in the UK and around the world.

I can’t think of any organization more ideally positioned to take on this mission than the RSA.

The crisis is the collapse of our past egoistic nature and the birth of an altruistic nature. It is a historical process, which means it could potentially be long and painful because it is taking place above us. There were a number of changes like this throughout our history but this is the first time we can consciously participate in our rebirth and facilitate the flow of the birth process. The alternative is, that just like in the past, we will have revolutions and wars taking place simultaneously worldwide. We are already seeing the beginning of this today.

The crisis is happening in all areas of our life because it is a crisis of our nature; this is what we need to change. Whether consciously or unconsciously, nature will have its way and force us to accept new changes through suffering.

There is a better way to go through this transition and that is in full awareness of the process and its purpose. The goal this time is for us to develop on the inside, for us to reach a level of potential that we cannot access in our current egoistic state.

The result will be a level of abundance and tranquility the world has never experienced.