After a short summer break, it's good to welcome you back to a new episode of Leaders Link: a series of live-streamed conversations with leaders who have special reflections to share on some of the greatest challenges of our time.
Blair Sheppard is the Global leader for Strategy and Leadership at PwC. His latest book is Ten years to midnight: four urgent global crises and their strategic solutions.
Blair opens by describing the four major crises facing the world. First, if people stop thinking the future is good, it’ll be bad (we’ll psychologise ourselves into a depression). Second, the unintended consequences of technology (40% of jobs are likely to turn over in the next decade). Third, the number of people who believe ‘the system’ just isn’t working for them: Edelman research indicates a staggering figure of 82%. Lastly, amid rampant polarisation, there’s a crisis of leadership at the very time when we need agreement on the profound problems facing humanity.
Top of the list, of course, is COVID, which has driven 120 million people back into poverty. Yet the pandemic has also shown us that populations can act fast – and achieve scope and scale.
Blair also outlines his Six Paradoxes of Leadership and offers some encouraging advice. For the ‘globally minded localist’, his guidance is to solve each crisis one village, one town and one city at a time. "Find a place you love and help it get better.”
Our next Leaders Link features Leaders' Quest Partner Melanie Jamieson and David Rouch, author and Partner at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. David believes there’s an urgent need for people to change the way they think and feel about finance. In The social licence for financial markets, he explores how financial markets can work well and sustainably to help humanity navigate a way through the post-pandemic world. What’s the potential and what needs re-thinking?
To join this session on Tuesday 20 October at 8 AM (PT); 11 AM (EDT); 4 PM (BST), you can register here. These sessions are free and open to everyone, so do invite your networks to join!