Why Evolution Depends on Diversity
At some point we have to decide who we want to be. What is important to us and where the journey of our life should lead us. Which doesn’t mean that we will get there. All of our plans are of no use if things turn out differently than you thought. COVID 19 is currently showing us another side of our ability to adapt and change. It is not better, it is not worse, it is different. We have to learn to deal with new circumstances and we have to get involved, and this is the only way we could take the next step into the unknown.
I remember a scene with my father where he asked me over and over again: are you sure that your statement is correct as it is? Why do you think it is so, why can’t it be different? – Frighteningly fast I didn’t know what to say to him anymore. I was 12 years old at the time. When I was 16 I had a near-death experience. I saw myself from above. Wrapped up in pain, as people rushed to me to try and bring me back. Although I didn’t actually decide to come back myself – I did. Why?
We don’t question ourselves enough. We don’t question the status quo enough. We live merely to survive, whereas we should create, improve, innovate. We take it for granted that things are how they are. Why?
The long-term effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on our economies are not yet foreseeable. It hit our global economic system like a tidlewave and led to lockdowns all over the world. During these trying times, many entrepreneurs are likely to have seen their entrepreneurial existence from above as well. An entrepreneurial near-death experience, so to say, wholly unexpected and unprecedented. – What now? Do you keep on going? And, if so, why?
In Switzerland, the Federal Council declared the lockdown on March 16 and upheld it until May 11, 2020, thereby shutting down a large part of economic and social life during almost two months. Only four weeks later, on June 9, 2020, the Swiss parliament passed the “Aktienrechtsreform” bill and thus implemented gender guidelines for listed companies. Without people noticing. 67% of Swiss public limited companies with more than 50 employees do not have a single woman on their board of directors (Diversity Report 2020). Why?
Evolution is not a status; it is a process. We are in the middle of it and we are part of it. What evolution is in nature, innovation is in business. But we have only one primary source of innovation, and that’s our imagination. The imagination of the people we interact with, the people we discuss our challenges with.
Evolution has caught us off guard – what innovations do we respond to it with? And, more importantly, how do we imagine to respond to it in the future? Widen your imagination and surround yourself with inspiring people, men and women. If there has ever been a time to enlarge your perspective, to include different, diverse perspectives it’s now. – while we are still alive.