Thursday, June 17, 2010

June 14, 2010

Message From the Chair Emeritus—Richard Johanson
Has it occurred to you that one of the greatest frustrations we face as we try to transform this place from Good to Great is being among those who cannot disagree without being disagreeable? Many of the just concluded election campaigns are a case in point. For those of you who are members of the FBC or interested in becoming one, I encourage you to attend our membership meeting this Wednesday morning in the Alice Peters Auditorium at the CSUF Craig School of Business. Be sure to park in the space marked by UBC flags. I predict you will depart inspired by all that is happening. Transformation surrounds us. Be there and get a first-hand report. If you have not already, please let Deb know you are coming at

The Future of Leadership—John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems
As every sector and organization has struggled to adapt to rapid, multi-dimensional change, the pressure on leaders is intense. The training most received is dated and the culture where they once thrived is gone. Now what? In a recent column in Newsweek, John Chambers, the CEO of Cisco Systems offered his thoughts. His insights clearly apply to our work as we partner with others to build a great community.

From top down to collaboration:
When asked how he has changed since he assumed the CEO spot in 1995, Chambers explained that when he started he thought his job was about vision, strategy, team building and communication. Within 5 years he understood the critical role of culture and his responsibility to drive and reinforce a great one. He spoke to the dramatic shift underway…. “from command and control to collaboration and teamwork. It sounds easy to do, but it’s hard, because you are trained the old way in business and law school. Today, 80 to 90% of the job is how we work together toward common goals, which requires a different skill set.”

From siloes to multi-disciplinary teams:“..there’s a fundamental change that may be really important to the future of business in this country and the world…we are moving to collaborative teams and training leaders to think across siloes. We’re going to train a generalist group of leaders who know how to learn and operate in collaboration teamwork. I think that is the future of leadership.”

Implications For Our Community and Region
Since the planning began for the Collaborative Regional Initiative in 1999, an increasing number of people have become committed to operating in accordance with a set of ten community values. Many have become literate in three areas of work—economic, infrastructure and human development. They understand how the pieces fit together and that they are interdependent and equally important. Stewardship of the whole and collaboration across boundaries are at the heart of the work. We have rediscovered the fine art of barn raising and one by one major issues have been added to the “to do” list as champions have emerged to tackle them. These champions know how to think across disciplines and leverage the knowledge and resources that are already in play. Life-long learning is a must no matter what position one holds.

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