Poverty, Excess and Leadership

If you are like me, you have wrestled from time to time with the question of “what am I to do with my winnings that I have inherited as a result of the birth lottery?”

Keeps my thinking about how much is enough. The average Canadian income ($50,000 ish) lands us in the top 5 or 10% of the world. Just being born here means we are wealthy in relation to others…aka the “birth lottery”.

I read recently that US CEOs earn as much as 275 times that of their lowest paid employees. My first thought was to try to encourage leaders to take less in salary, perks and bonuses…and maybe that is still an important message (applies to me as well)…but I run into the old free-market argument of, “a good CEO is worthy of whatever the market will pay…they earned it…and after all…if the company doesn’t pay that much, then a competitor will hire them away!”

What difference would it make if we took a little bit (or a whole lot) of the excess we hod and invested it in the lives of others? Maybe a micro business loan to someone in a developing country…maybe a sponsored child (or two, three…or more).

Leadership behavior becomes culture … what would we like our culture to be? One of arrogance, self-indulgence and indifference…or one of generosity, compassion and love?

What are you willing to do to lead others and see this culture become a reality?