The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake” – Psalm 23: 1-3
The Market Oracle, a free daily UK resourced online publication, in November 2009 stated that the United States was at a Recession or Inflation Crossroads. The U.S. economy was in uncertain times. Eighteen months later, the world has not come to an end as many predicted. We have survived the recession but must now plan for the challenges which arise during the recovery. It cannot be business as usual, we require a Sea-Change to be effective.
The term Sea-Change was probably first used in Shakespeare’s Tempest (1611) where Ariel spoke thus: “Full fathom five thy father lies; Of his bones are coral made; Those are pearls that were his eyes. Nothing of him that doth fade; But doth suffer a sea-change; Into something rich and strange. Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell”.
Since then Sea-Change has been used to mean “any major transformation or alteration” not necessarily induced by the action of the sea. Herein lies our solution, these words provide the inspiration for what we have to do.
The sea, quite apart from the richness of plant and animal life, does have amazing therapeutic value that turns you into something rich and strange. Its spiritual, mental and physical influences are amazing and I try to take a dip in the sea at least once per week. Whenever my two sons visit invariably there is the command, often camouflaged as a question, “What time are we going to the beach in the morning?” The other amazing thing is how few local people take advantage of this pristine blue-green mass of heavenly water. It is all free to the local consumer at the point of delivery even though tourists have to pay to get there.
What a place to commune with the Divine as you lie floating on your back on the buoyant waters of the ocean only viewing the immense vastness of the sky above; the rest of the world temporarily expunged from your consciousness. I have composed the nucleus of many a speech as I absorbed the minerals in the water or as I have walked up and down the beach. What a wholesome environment for such a creative exercise. Absorbing the sun’s rays with an appropriate skin screen and the opportunity for aqua-exercise are among the best therapeutic options, since the therapy takes place in a resistance friendly environment.
So much for the “still” waters of the sea, now let us go in search of the greener pastures of life. Let us tackle the challenges in the recovery of the economy. It is another Sea-Change, this time it is the Sequential Evolutionary Approach (SEA) syndrome, that is needed to effect change.
I invoke my mother’s affirmation: I am; therefore, I can; therefore I will. Incidentally Rites, as she is affectionately called, is on course to celebrate her ninety-seventh birthday on Saturday 28 May 2011. Happy birthday, Mummy!
We must define our Vision and, of course, we must have a plan of Action if we are going to achieve the objectives germane to the Vision. A generic plan of Action is the SEA syndrome. “Systematic” means that we must approach our task one step after another. At each step we garner as much information as we can and use that information to determine the magnitude and direction of the next step, as we seek to achieve our objective. If we practice SEA diligently, we shall “Evolve” in an optimal manner towards the objective.
The Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation is confidently pursuing its Vision: Barbados – the #1 Entrepreneurial Hub in the World by 2020. If it adopts the SEA syndrome in each of its pillars the collective impact on the achievement of the objectives which define the Vision will be phenomenal.
The Government policy pillar has already achieved a major winner where the BEF vision has been adopted nationally in Protocol VI of the social partnership. The Business Facilitation pillar is promoting the philosophy of volunteerism or at least “giving back” to the society in the interest of increasing the size of the socio-economic cake, the ultimate result of which will redound to the benefit of us all. The Education pillar realises the importance of instilling a culture of entrepreneurship in the youth, thus giving them a sound orientation and foundation for the future. The financial pillar must persuade existing financial institutions to be innovative in the introduction of instruments which will aid the recovery process. Timely access to appropriate finance is the major hurdle to progress at the moment.
Then the mentoring pillar must identify potential entrepreneurs and corresponding mentors and then match them. We have no shortage of sources from which we can identify entrepreneurs. Potential mentors have volunteered their services and I now appeal to others to make their contribution to the Sea-Change as we create the buzz of an entrepreneurial culture.
All enterprises which operate in the economy are important, but BIM Ventures is engaging with a sub-set of entrepreneurs which have a potential to contribute significantly, DNA of an Elephant, over the next five years, say. These entrepreneurs are supported by the CBET Shepherding Model™ and we shall witness the evolution one successful enterprise after another as we revive from the recession at unprecedented average rates of growth as we approach 2020.