“Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God” – Hebrews 12:15
There are many circumstances in life when we are reportedly “down and out” but we unite and pray that, by the Grace of God, we may recover.
In the recently concluded Cricket World Cup game in Nagpur between South Africa and India, India were 267 for 1 in the 40th over, as a result of the exploits of Sehwag, Tendukar and Gambhir, and at that time the mood of the South African team was “down and out”. The members of the team supported each other and, by the Grace of God restricted the Indians to 296 all out in less than 49 overs and the team received a new lease on life to fight on for a win… and South Africa did win with two balls to spare.
There was devastation in North-Eastern Japan with an unknown number feared dead in the aftermath of last Friday’s 8.9 quake and ensuing tsunami. A second 6.6 quake hit later on Friday as the search for survivors and the missing continued. In the same way it is expected that those affected will, through our capacity to care for others and by the Grace of God, be rehabilitated and rebuild.
When I look out in my back yard, I see the avocado tree full of inflorescences. It was the same last year but the fruit were few and far between. Where were the bees? We pray that this year the bees, whence they come, will by the Grace of God pollinate the flowers to give an abundant yield.
The countries in the world are undergoing the effect of a global economic recession. The policy adopted by each Government differs one from another. Some think that the best way is for the Government to tax its way out of the problem, without increasing the size of the economic cake. There is a problem with this strategy – where is the sustained source of net expected increase in taxation given the restricted size of the cake? Others prefer to first increase the size of the economic cake – whence the capital and human resources? When the cake gets bigger then there is the opportunity to increase taxation and provide more resources from an increased taxation base.
Each country will depend on those with the capacity to care for others to mobilise resources which will by the Grace of God take us on a journey of sustained success and economic growth.
In Barbados, we have adopted an innovative approach through the Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation Inc. (BEF) with the Vision to position Barbados as the #1 Entrepreneurial Hub in the World by 2020. Quantitatively, the Vision is driven by a strategic objective to double the GDP per capita of Barbados in 10 years. This is realistic if the appropriate strategies are adopted. It will, of course, require that the appropriate human resources are available and that financial resources can be sourced through the right instruments in a timely manner.
In the context of human resources there is only one way to achieve this. One has to have an appropriate immigration strategy to bring in the best resources that you can get and then set up the commensurate educational institutions which will cater to the manpower needs of the country. This is no easy task given the BEF’s objective to double the GDP per capita in 10 years.
We must take a leaf out of Singapore’s book. Singapore realised that their human resource was their most important resource and that it must be developed to its fullest. We need to appoint the best person in the world for the job, Singaporean or non-Singaporean, man or woman. The reality has been that their immigration policy allowed for the smooth implementation of this strategy. Their educational development policy has allowed Singaporeans to be trained and then work under those technical people who were imported with the subsequent take over the top jobs by Singaporeans.
As far as the financial resources are concerned we have set up the Barbados Entrepreneurs’ Venture Capital Fund (Bimventures) as a Smart Partnership between CBET Inc., the owner of the Intellectual Property Rights of the CBET Shepherding Model, and the Government and the Private Sector of Barbados. The Government has agreed to provide incentives for the private sector to invest in this fund which provides seed and venture capital funding for entrepreneurs in a business environment where Shepherding is mandatory as a means of mitigating the risk of failure of start-up enterprises.
Brian Griffith’s “Jewel for Today” on Saturday was a Latin proverb “By learning you will teach; by teaching you will learn”. A synthesis of which is “We learn by Teaching”. He challenged the reader to “say it in Latin”. How about “Docendo discimus”? – according to my research.
The Bimventures experience has exemplified the Latin proverb – We learn by Teaching. The Shepherding process which is carried out by Shepherds and Business Advisers is indeed a teaching model. The shepherding interaction with entrepreneurs over the past 15 months has proved to be very valuable as a learning experience for the Bimventures management and Trustees.
Whatever the area of endeavour in life, we have to be poised to respond to the challenge so that we can reposition ourselves to recover the situation and put us on track to the journey of sustainable success.