The 21st Century has the potential to be humankind’s greatest century. Indeed, innovations over the next four decades have the potential to dwarf the innovations of the past 200 years.
But this version of the future will only become true if leaders are courageous enough to take giant leaps forward. According to the New York Times, the largest companies in the world are hoarding over $2 Trillion in cash, despite real interest rates hovering around zero for over five years.
Collectively, American businesses currently have $1.9 trillion in cash, just sitting around. Not only is this state of affairs unparalleled in economic history, but we don’t even have much data to compare it with, because corporations have traditionally been borrowers, not savers. The notion that a corporation would hold on to so much of its profit seems economically absurd, especially now, when it is probably earning only about 2 percent interest by parking that money in United States Treasury bonds. These companies would be better off investing in anything “” a product, a service, a corporate acquisition “” that would make them more than 2 cents of profit on the dollar, a razor-thin margin by corporate standards. And yet they choose to keep the cash, says
The captains of industry are hesitating and not investing in meaningful innovations when there has never been a more critical time to unleash the awesome power of value creation which organisations are capable of when leaders embark on quests to make a significant difference.
Forbes Magazine says that the most valuable employee is the social intrapreneur – Individuals in corporations who are making a meaningful difference. We live in a time in history where individuals have the power to make the difference. Three things are driving this:
- The power of social media
- The democratisation of information
- Unparallelled access to disruptive and mobile technology
Each one of us has the power to do our big bit, or, small bit to deliver meaningfulness in our own world. The decisions each one of us make will have a profound impact on the outcome of this century. Collectively we can drive change for the positive.
The foundations are being laid in real time at tremendous speed. The time to act is now. The opportunities and innovations are available for an amazing future, the world just needs more quester leaders.