I was delighted, honoured, and humbled, to be recognised by CEO Today magazine as the UK CEO of the Year (Life Sciences) for 2018. Looking through the magazine at the many other individuals who received awards made me realise what a fabulous country we live in – the depth of talent in leadership, entrepreneurship, vision and talent across all sectors is extraordinary. I am left with a strong sense that we have nothing to fear from Brexit – the CEOs will make it happen (whatever is required from deal or no deal), regardless of the political outcome.
There has been much talk recently, particularly in relation to the modern day Parliamentarian, about courage in relation to leadership. Comparisons, fair or otherwise, are often drawn between now and other moments in history of great challenges and the lack of courage now being displayed.
I recently spoke at a conference in Ethiopia on the subject of ‘Ethical Leadership’.
I concluded with these thoughts on moral courage, which I thought, with current events in mind, I would share:
You might be uncomfortable at times as an ethical leader – but no one has ever said leadership is easy. However, situations demanding strong ethical behaviour can teach us to trust ourselves and our instincts. If you calm your anxiety and look logically at the situation facing you, your instincts will often guide you in the right direction – what I prefer to call that most elusive of leadership qualities – ‘grace under pressure’ (Ernest Hemingway)