Airbus is an early test for Sarcozy

791px-farnborough_air_show_2006_a380_landing.jpg18-nicolas_sarkozy.jpg_41385977_seamusheaney203.jpgNicholas Sarcozy discovers that Airbus will be one of many issues which will require his attention as President. At present, he may be able to do little more than signal his awareness of its significance. He is unlikely to have a long honeymoon period.

The energetic M. Saroczy moves quickly to the scene of potential troubles over the future of Airbus employees in France. The company serves as an interesting indicator of his leadership style early on in his Presidency.

He arrives at the firm’s Toulouse headquarters with plenty of experience and preparation for what he will do. While it has not dominated the recent Presidential campaign, he will have had as much time then, as he is likely to have in the future for considering his plans. His call then was for a strengthening the leadership of the company through attracting new investors to its board.

In the election battle he avoided addressing the immediate production difficulties and the longer-term strategic and governance issues which have been the preoccupations of Louis Gallois.

For all Sarco’s intentions, it is hard to see him being in a position to make a difference in the short-term. The workforce has already begun action direct. He comes as the newly appointed champion of the Right. A gesture of masterful inaction is likely to be his best outcome at the moment.

Some words of advice: Listen to the poets

Across the channel, an historic election recently resulted in the appointment of leaders to the new power-sharing assembly of Northern Ireland. The challenges facing the leaders are as tough as any facing Sarcozy.

In his acceptance speech, deputy leader Martin McGuinness recounted advice he had been given. He had chosen Seamus Heaney as his mentor. The great Irish poet had urged him to pay attention not to togetherness, but to working and celebrating ‘otherness’.

Not bad advice for Nicholas Sarcozy. Also, as a general principle, listen to the poets. Their worlds, and words, in another inspired phrase borrowed from Seamus Heaney, offer us redress to our assumptions and beliefs. That’s maybe a worthwhile leadership principle of itself.

3 Responses to Airbus is an early test for Sarcozy

  1. Tudor,

    Interesting bit on McGuinness! Maybe a “terrorist” (correct me if I am wrong!) has something (at least ultimately) to teach those political conservatives in democracies who think “others” cannot be right. But, looking at business organisations, isn’t the emphasis in “fitting in” to a group (with evaluation by those stupid KPI’s) the antithesis of “otherness” — after all, an “other” person might do something surprising, indeed, creative, and outside the KPI. But, of course, if the creativity brings in dollar, creativity can then be used for an ex-post change in the KPI

    Or, am I having a bad hair day?


  2. Tudor says:

    Hi Jeff,

    Hard to say. The event had enormous symbolic sugnificance in Northern Ireland, but was mainly unremarked on the mainland. Ian Paisley in particular must be wrestling with more than a touch of the coggers. Translation. There is congnitive distance between his actions and his beliefs

    Meanwhile, the rhetoric of togetherness, unity of purpose and so on was always easy to challenge. Togetherness works for some circumstances. Otherness when respected can enrich outputs. Otherwise it just helps sustain in-group solidarities.

  3. Tudor says:

    Excuse twitchy writing above. Which can also produce creative ramblings. Sugnificance must be a Northen Irish term, as is sugnificonse …

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