Global Village for Future Leaders

Perspectives…For Women Who Lead: Late Summer Edition

This issue of Perspectives offers insights and ideas for women who want to make a difference in their homes, communities, and careers

No more Mommy Guilt!!
No more Mommy Guilt!!

Our lead story provides encouragement for working mothers: No, you’re not ruining your children by pursuing your goals and helping to keep food on the table. In fact, according to a recent study, you’re giving them a shining example of focused, disciplined, and self-reliant. No more Mommy Guilt!!

Perhaps you’ve heard the saying about the life’s three greatest fears: The first on is dying, the second one is speaking in public, and the third is dying while speaking in public. If those three fears describe you, help is on the way with our list of tips and tricks to wow the crowd including joining Toastmasters.

If flowers make you feel happy, you’re not alone. Turns out the presence of flowers in our lives can lift our mood, make us more productive, and make us better friends, co-workers and partners. Suggestion: Print out the article from Perspectives and place it strategically around your home and office. Wait for floral delivery.

Our Late Summer Edition closes with a thought about how important it is to bring together the world’s young generation of future leaders which is exactly what the Global Village of Business and Industry at Lehigh University does for five weeks every summer. I was honored to participate for the twelfth year.

A Little Piece of World Peace…

Lehigh name tag
My Global Village name tag… A memento of another wonderful year with some of the world’s best and brightest.

This past week has refocused my thoughts on the importance of “international relations”, how important it is for humanity to get along and live together on this planet without killing each other. Every tiny step toward that goal is reassuring even though it often feels like one step forward and two steps back.

For the past eleven years I’ve participated as a “Visiting Executive” in Lehigh University’s Global Village for Future Leaders. Each summer Global Village brings together over one hundred mostly 20 somethings from around the world for an intensive month or so of international leadership training. These are truly some of the best and brightest from nearly fifty countries. Following an afternoon of my lecturing on  “Modern Leadership”, their asking questions and challenging my assertions, and one-on-one interactions about their hopes and dreams, I came away, as I do every year, with the same belief…and prayer, that by the time their generation assumes the world’s leadership roles running governments and international conglomerates, they won’t want to blow each other up. I remain hopeful that such a new global attitude is possible.

One of the reasons I remain hopeful about the big picture is because in my work and travels I have witnessed many small victories taking place all the time, seen what good people can accomplish on a micro scale; how one person can indeed make a difference.

My first trip to Afghanistan occurred in 2006. I accompanied Toni Maloney, co-founder of the Business Council for Peace, (Bpeace), and a group of volunteers on a mission to assist Afghan women to become entrepreneurs. On of our goals was to help Habiba grow the first real daycare center/pre-school program in Kabul, which she was operating out of small house with a courtyard. The children had few toys and no outdoor play equipment. From the time we spent with her it was obvious that what they did have was a lot of love, patience and support from Habiba and her staff, but they needed to provide a proper facility for the children. My generous friends and colleagues contributed $4000 that went directly in to the construction of a new school building. Bepeace’s total effort raised over $30,000 so the children of Kabul could have a safe, clean daycare center.

Habiba and her students in 2013.
Habiba and her students in 2013.

A few days ago, I received a photo from Toni of Habiba today, watching over a new class of students. She and the daycare center are still going strong providing early education to the next generation of Afghans. I’m very proud of the role that I and so many others played in that outcome. Just as I am proud of all the young, smart, savvy Villagers who will return to their countries with a broader knowledge of their global neighbors.

Until that next generation is ready to lead, the world will most likely continue to careen between crisis and hope..from civil war in Syria, a coup in Egypt, to a new proposal of Israeli / Palestinian peace talks. What we can do in the meantime is light candles in the darkness and use them to show the way.





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