2020, April 1st
THE INFINITE-MINDED LEADER
In this situation in which we find ourselves due to the global pandemic, some places more affected than others, friends who you did not treat permanently reappear, although you knew that they were close to you in silence. Friendships are renewed and new friends are forced by circumstances.
In this situation, we took up ties that we underestimated and seemed casual rather than formal but people we had forgotten have reappeared in our lives. In this situation, 20 years ago, we did not think that a simple association, created by common interests 10 years beforehand, was going to be a mirror of personal relationships that transcends borders.
Those of us who are still founders personally believed we were the only ones necessary to maintain “our own”. We were not able to think that others could advance, improve, lead our own original creations.
The elimination by comparison of brains is set by the reality of those who are stronger, are younger, and are better equipped with tools that are going to do limited processes.
In this performance I never thought that I would receive so many solidarity WhatsApps or so much support for causes as simple as those of EURHODIP. Causes that need more wills than money. Noble and future causes. Your will, dear directors of EURHODIP schools and universities, who, confined at home like me, feel powerless and have no choice but to lay hold on memories. Those photos from 20 years ago that I send you as an annex to this letter. Those emails, those communications that have made our friendship possible.
We all ask ourselves: What do I work for?
What is the meaning of this desire for improvement, change, and innovation that I plant every day on the table of my desk, director?
I don’t work just for money
I don’t work just for discipline.
I don’t work just for being valued.
I don’t work just to exercise my command.
I work to be consistent with my ideas.
I work to satisfy my desires to be every day.
I work for my own gratification and that of my people.
I work because it is part of my happiness.
I work for others because without them I cannot live.
What a bad time I spend these days confined.
I need to talk to you and tell you what happens, what I think, as I am.
I need to see you and that’s why I use the images on my phone.
I need to be in your life, and you in mine.
I need to correct exams for my students.
I need to state that I have authority and that I like to exercise it in weighted balanced.
I need someone to call me and say, “Hello, are you there?”
We believed that we were working together for a program, for a university that has a legend, for a quarterly plan whose results thanks to our intelligence would be excellent, positive: the best quarter of the year.
We thought we had our own unalterable and impregnable territory.
We believed that we had a unique brand, the best that could cross the seas of history and navigate the world alone.
We believed that we were self-sufficient in our small calculated economy. “We are not going to depend on anyone,” we said to ourselves.
We believed in our long-standing secular system in such a way that we could not suspect the weaknesses that now plague us.
Directors of the best schools in the world united, although the fragility of the presence of life to excessive occupations prevented us from seeing each other on more occasions, but it seemed that we were united. Who does not feel like a brother among us? Although faces and chairs change. I have felt like a brother of EURHODIP, even though I have not paid the fee. The fraternal greatness of this
Association has been inspired by the presidents and directors and they have preceded me in the responsibility of existing.
Now already, in a time of forced reflection, like this, I don’t know how to make it bigger. Everything is above our economic balance. Everything is above the blacklist of those who never respond. Everything is above those who despise us thinking they don’t need us. There are inbred institutions that elude us by pretending to mean otherwise. Selfishness is not the best way and even less now.
It is time, more than ever, to be united and to have clear ideas. This Board of Directors which I chair has them and look forward while the new way of life looming in the hospitality and tourism.
The digital gap was a premonition of the change of era. We had been announcing it. The systems of the past serve only as a reference. Human intelligence takes value with its memory and will. It is the only way to cure the pandemic. But this new human being will have to be more disciplined with the use of artificial intelligence. And above all more responsible in its values and in decision making. It is the will
of humans. The coronavirus tells us that there is global humanity is polishable, without limit of races and without borders. Then you need global discipline, global ethics, you mustn’t play games with human lives.
We need a social distribution of the limited goods that life gives to a smart economy. Gone are the powers of the weapons and the power of money. Rich is he who is healthy now and powerful is he who knows how to heal because he has science.
Educators have been challenged by this pandemic. Systems that did not count on knowing the uses of artificial intelligence have collapsed. Those who routinely teach based on manuals don’t know what to do after this. The codes, the new codes, knowledge, and knowledge management are kept stored under unknown keys.
Educating is won’t merely be teaching but accompanying students and doing so with experience.
The classrooms are already workshops. Those who invent not those who study will be the best, but to invent you must study. This is the binomial.
Trying to explain what is not seen is going to be more difficult if a new spirituality that analyzes the feelings and expression of the student is not born.
More than ever, educating is about creating emotions and transmitting experience. But we will no longer show them our little world because this collective suffering of the pandemic has shown us that every human being is fragile and only union makes strength. Resources are not only in one country but in the global world.
They belong to a world that suffers without borders and seeks solutions, wherever they come from. There are no more reasons than the ethics of sustainability or more values than those that fraternize peoples. Proud of our hernia it serves only to serve and not to empower one above the other but to the extent that we are able to resist their suffering or prevent their destruction.
Therefore, in this new era, our educational tasks must enter the infinite game that Simon Sinek proclaims in (The Infinite Game) Active Company. January 2020: “Great leaders are those who think beyond the ‘short’ versus the long term. They are the ones who know that the crux of the matter is not the next quarter, nor the next elections, but the next generation.”
How are we going to healthily leave this wounded and financially vulnerable generation if there is no honest, disinterested intelligent management at the moment in the situation that has come upon us?
The values are necessary and are displayed on the surface. Every day we see weighting values and condemning violations of rights and people. Good values will prevail over the selfishness and corruption of those who in many cases want to rule. Their temptation will be to become Orwellian citizens and possess our lives in eternal quarantine. Now more than ever we must educate for the freedom of people
and for the values that precisely protect human rights.
Dear directors, my advice as an old man is to work to empower infinite projects. The game of the infinite is the one that must be at stake and thus they will transcend beyond us, our universities, our students. This pandemic makes us reflect that nothing belongs to us. We are simple users. By making laws and regulations we must respect people if we want to survive. We always live on borrowed. We always live for others. A new era is born when we have not had time to finalize ours, to put our ideas in order and draw conclusions. The conclusions are given to us by the facts. Reality comes to examine our fundamental principles.
Winning is not the goal but to transcend. Whoever talks about winning is obsessed with competition. And if we adopt the importance of our jobs as educators, we will enjoy other levels of confidence and other ways of understanding life. “The true value of an organization like ours is measured by the desire of others to contribute to that organization’s ability to continue to succeed, not only during the time they are there, but long after leaving office. A finite-minded leader will work to get something out of his employees, teachers, students, clients, shareholders to meet arbitrary parameters. Instead, the infinite-minded leader works to make sure that his employees, customers, teachers, students, and shareholders continue to be inspired to continue to contribute in his effort to progress.” Players with an infinite mindset want to leave their
organization better than when they found it.
In these first days of April of the year 2020, in the midst of a chaotic and complicated situation in the world in which we live, caused by an almost invisible virus that shows our fragility, I would like us to think together about these considerations that lead us to act together in the common interests that is our educational mission. I invite you to be infinite-minded leaders.
I wish you to have health, peace, and thoughts that feed the recognized leadership of your schools, your teachers, and your students.
Luis de Lezama