Should CEO’s get involved in politics?

December 24, 2012 at 10:36 am Leave a comment

During HBR’s 90th anniversary gala in New York on 11/27/2012, Howard Schultz asked, “Are. You. A bystander? Or are you a leader?”

Business leaders have no choice but to get involved in politics in a world where political gridlock is as real a threat to one’s business as your competitor’s new killer product or a hurricane bearing down on your warehouse. To do otherwise is not just short-sighted, it’s an abdication of responsibility. In fact, the pragmatizing influence of business might be just what Congress needs. As Howard Schultz challenged the executives in the audience last night: “We all know that something is wrong. We absolutely know it. Yet we’re sitting here as if everything is fine.”

When has more participation in our political system ever been a bad thing? Isn’t that what government “of the people, by the people, for the people” is supposed to be about?

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Entry filed under: CEO coach.

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