Inaugurations are historic enough – Iran released 52 hostages twenty minutes after Reagan was inaugurated in 1981. Obama was the first ever African American President, inaugurated in 2009. Harris makes history for being the first ethnic minority female to hold her post, as well as being the first woman to do so.
However, yesterday was more than historic. It was the moment America pulled back from the precipice.
Like many businesses, we strive very hard to be non-partisan in our writing and in our work. But some things are above party politics.
Leadership means being guided by morals, ethics, inclusion and defining your true north. To give equivalence to the behaviours of an outgoing President who lied about the election result with an incoming President who didn’t does not constitute non-partisanship, it constitutes collusion in denial of truth. To compare equally a leader who completely mishandles racial conflict, for example Charlottesville, with a leader who, while imperfect, has a history of demonstrable allyship is false equivalence. It gives credit where it’s absolutely not due.
Furthermore, be wary of the pretence of neutrality, or non-partisanship, at times of grave moral danger. Giving credence to unethical, immoral, non-inclusive behaviour is collusion. Knowingly allowing someone’s bad behaviour to continue on your watch is collusion.
Collusion originates from the Latin colludere, or ‘to have a secret agreement’. It can involve secret, even illegal, behaviour in order to permit the continuation of a status quo. For four years, many United States Senators colluded with a twice-impeached President in order to maintain power.
In these turbulent times, we are proud of the work we do to stay centred. We are proud of the work you do in leading people, teams, companies in meaningful work. However, in the absence of political leadership, and in times of extreme ambiguity, it’s more important than ever that you stay centred. You are the new centre ground. You are more than an organisation, you are an anchor in stormy seas.