Our Business Leaders in the 21st Century need Philosophy. In the era of permanent revolution and increasing complexity, solutions are found by embracing different mindsets, simplicity and wild knowledge. The purpose of business is changing, and relations are interdependent and multi-dimensional in a short historical era, which I define as the “era of the Mensch”.

There is an interdisciplinary potential of business and philosophy, when combined together. Philosophy supports the on-going improvement of business models, methodologies and various strategies – shaping how we work - and can also articulate “blind-spots” in business by looking behind the assumptions defined in our old models of “known-facts” and questioning theoretical defined pre-conditions influencing how we think. Technology is evolving at an exponentially growing speed while the evolution of humanity is struggling to keep up – we need to dig deeper for greater richness and more depth which is not solely measured in $, € or YEN. We are using old models to solve future problems and working with outdated approaches. To end this struggle it is necessary to view things from a different angle, approached by positivism. With this approach, the world is full of opportunities and possibilities rather than limitations. Our leaders of tomorrow need this to add to their value systems, tool-boxes and mindsets. We are looking for effective ways to combine how we do business with the needs of society as we move into the future. The skills needed are based on rational thinking, an outside-in or a backward view of things, some kind of optimization of a continuous decision-making process by taking abstract reflections and a broad view to a very often “narrow focus” way of thinking. Creativity and wild-knowledge are the drivers of the 21st Century – the power of ideas. Philosophy provides support by questioning the answers and the facts, and provides critical reasoning. Lack of questioning assumptions is in fact one of the biggest challenges in organizations today, particularly in larger hierarchical companies. The future leaders must function both productively, with a defined set of values, and be more responsible in order to succeed in business. Building culture and the organization while providing value to the clients. 

“Our Leaders of today need the philosophy of the past, paired with the scientific knowledge and technology of tomorrow.“

Even with the world of philosophy and great thinkers, I am still a strong believer of the power and benefits of capitalism. The model is good, or at least defined as a working model, but it needs compassion – I favor the “beauty of capitalism” through value creation and a democratic view over the raw cold capitalism that put us into the “awaking” of the financial crisis. We might see some residual pain as countries clean up their oil budgets at 85USD a barrel (e.g. Saudi Arabia), and there will obviously be other challenges – but I would like to focus on enjoying change; evolution permanently at work, wild knowledge, opportunities and the positivism that lies ahead of us.  With my work as a business philosopher I do not look to teach what to think, but want to influence how we think on the road towards our goals. Keep connecting Anders

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