Globally minded leaders 'essential' to business survival

Pointing to the rapid economic and population growth in the developing world, Ángel Cabrera, the recently installed president of George Mason University, argued that multinational companies must develop a new cadre of globally minded leaders to maintain and grow their business.

“The new champions will be either companies that are growing in developing markets who already have the ability to deal with less structure and infrastructure than the developed world, or companies from the developed world who invest in developing those capabilities,” said Cabrera, speaking with Devex Impact’s associate editor on the sidelines of the fourth annual International Corporate Volunteerism conference in Washington, D.C., this month.

Cabrera, the keynote speaker for the event, which was hosted by CDC Development Solutions, suggested that international corporate volunteerism programs help create the next generation of leaders that multinationals will need.

He described the list of attributes that successful future leaders will need, including having the ability “to look at reality from different angles” and leverage resources from very different environments.

“If you think about the list of those requirements, and the kinds of skills the experience as an international volunteer provides, the match is almost perfect,” said Cabrera, who co-authored the recent book, ”Being Global: How to Think, Act and Lead in a Transformed World.”

Watch now as Cabrera explains how globally minded leaders can help mitigate the negative effects of globalization and why he’s impatient with the pace of change among today’s multinationals.

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About the author

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    Andrea Useem

    As former associate editor and content director for Devex Impact, Andrea created and managed cutting-edge content on the intersection of business and international development. An experienced multimedia journalist, Andrea also served as leadership editor at the Washington Post and spent three years as a foreign correspondent in Eastern Africa reporting for publications including the Boston Globe, Dallas Morning News, and San Francisco Chronicle.