"None of us can solve the whole problem -- but together, we can move the world," spoke Bill Clinton at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) America in Chicago last week. Clinton challenges business, government, not-for-profits and foundations to figure out collaborative solutions to the big, complex problems that face society.
When I received an invitation to join President Clinton and a delegation in Haiti on an agricultural trade mission, I looked at the list of large philanthropic corporations from Heineken to Pepsi and at first thought, "How did I get on this powerful list of investors?" I am not a big corporation. I run my small Canadian fragrance company, The 7 Virtues, and we buy essential oils to empower rebuilding nations.
This need for an inter-generational politics is especially relevant in the context of an interesting debate that has been playing out in the Globe and Mail on the topic of youth engagement in politics. It is great to see this debate in a major Canadian newspaper and especially with youth themselves as the protagonists.
Bill Clinton at the DNC said what white- and blue-collar workers have known for 30 years: you need to invest in people to have an innovative and productive economy. My coach, used to say "you get corn, if you plant corn." Neither in government nor in business have we been planting corn. We quit planting it almost 30 years ago when we got rid of middle management in government and the private sector, and as the economy reveals, we are losing.