21st Century Coaching Reality
There has never been a more interesting and fascinating time to live in. With the advancement of technology, science, communication, and overall economical progress, we are by far the most privileged and comfortable that humans have ever been. The 21st century reality has made it possible for us to reach the stars, communicate with anyone instantly, and create the life of our choice.
This also applies to businesses worldwide. The business arena has always been a place of often rapid and unexpected changes, and with the technological and communicational progress of the last 10 decades, it has bloomed and turned small, local, household companies into multinational empires, with divisions around the globe and international staff skilled for every level of demand. Undoubtedly, these are the best and the most opportunity driven times in the history of humankind.
But history is now changing, bringing on another reality that both businesses and individuals need to address, and they need to do it now. The cash flow, business development, and profitability conversations that we have been used to are now slowly, but consistently giving way to the question of sustainability both in the local and global arena. Twenty years ago, focus on sustainability might have been considered a luxury or a fashion, but with what we now know about the environment – air, oceans, and much more – it is becoming a matter of life and death for all of us on Earth.
Let’s look at some facts:
● Global carbon emissions and average yearly temperatures, planetary, have shown continued significant increases. The last ten years have been the hottest in recorded world history.
● More than 5.5 million people die annually due to both outdoor and household air pollution.
● Human population rises 1.1% annually.
● Collectively the number of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and fish in the world has fallen by 29%.
● 1.3 billion tons of food are wasted every year. In the United States alone, 40% of all food goes to waste.
● Just one quarter of all wasted food could feed the 795 million undernourished people around the world who suffer from hunger. This year alone, 36 million people will die from starvation.
● Every minute, 12 children under the age of five will die of hunger. This is a child dying every 5 seconds, 356 days a year.
● Death toll from armed conflicts are still high. It has been estimated that in Syria alone 354,000 – 500,000 people were killed to the end of 2017. Among them, 20,000 were children and 12,500 were women.
● According to Oxfam’s research from 2017, the world’s poorest 50% owned the same in assets as the $426 billion owned by a group headed by Bill Gates, Amancio Ortega – the founder of the Spanish fashion chain Zara, and Warren Buffett – the renowned investor and chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway.
● The amount of fresh water available per head of population worldwide has been reduced by 26%.
● The number of ocean ‘dead zones’ - places where little can live because of pollution and oxygen starvation - has increased by 75%.
● Nearly 300 million acres of forest have been lost, mostly to make way for agricultural land.
● In places like India, where the pollution levels are 59ug/m3, there are days when people are advised not to leave home because breathing is dangerous. Twenty years ago, it might have sounded like a farfetched negative visionary scenario, but it is the reality of today for millions of people. Facing the inability to breath, lack of natural resources, and a threat of overpopulation, human beings need to engage with our future for the good of all. We must use our well-developed strategic thinking and coaching skillsto now find the way out of the seemingly dire situation.
...and the list continues….