I recently got into an email dustup with a dear cousin of mine. It had to do with age, our not wanting to be called old. Some friend had share one of those list that would tax the aged challenged. Let me share a sample of the list.
As a Jamaican you know you are getting old if:
- You had an exercise book with Queen Elizabeth and her husband on it (instead of a ring binder).
- You used to listen to Redifussion.
- You wore Bata crepe to school, and bought Asham at the gate.
- (Extra credit if you know what Asham was made of)
- You remember that the Miss Lou and Maas Ranny show used to come on at 7:00 PM on a Sunday.
- You still call Norman Manley airport ‘Palisadoes Airport’.
Well, I made the mistake of calling this cousin Methuselah, and that’s when the email fireworks began.
We live in a world where seasoned experience (a nice way of saying old) is given a short shrift. Old is out and smart is in. Really?
One of the advantages of age is that you have the fortune of seeing things and patterns over time and may have learned from such episodes. For instance, Bernie Madoff may be history’s biggest con man, but he is not the first.
A term that I have not heard since my childhood is “confidence man“. For you youngsters, a confidence man is simply the” grand daddy” of a Bernie Madoff, a ginal who used the gift of his silver tongue to bilk many out of their few pennies.
I usually pay close attention to the introductions that leaders at whatever level receive. The one that seem to be the clincher for most folks is how smart they are or what title they carry behind their name. Well, education and achievement are very fine, but they by themselves do not address the worst deficit. The greatest deficit is the trust deficit!
You do not believe me? Well, explain to me the blow torch out pouring of anger regarding the AIG bonuses. The global all stars of Bernie Madoff or Stanford did not generate a single candle power heat compared to the mega watt searing anger of the bonus issue.
First, let us explore of thinking about trust as summarized in this chart. This is from one of my favorite books – “The Speed of Trust“ by Stephen Covey
The most telling point for me is trust goes beyond smart competence. Character is the other vital ingredient to be examined before confidence is invested.
As we go about rebuilding our lives and releasing the grips of fear and distrust, we need to use old time tested principles to provide guidance.
To be trusted is a greater complimented than to be loved – George MacDonald
The alphabet soup of stimulus plans will need a platform of trust to provide the needed catalyst of action.