Four Visions: OECD

“It’s all about people”— this was the message at the heart of the debate for the discussions at the 2013 annual OECD Week held in May. The event served as a platform to address major issues on the global agenda, and to get a broad range of stakeholders involved – not just ministers, but also key players from the worlds of business, labor, civil society and academia.

Participants in the conference, which focused on jobs, equality and trust, included two IE MBA students, Benedikt Broil from Germany and Agnes Blanco from Brazil,  and two IE Professors, Celia de Anca and Lee Newman.

Here they discuss diversity and prejudice issues in the light of the demonstrations against the gay marriage that recently took place in France. Check out the students’ replies to the professors!!!

Les Trois Sports

I don´t know about you but the image of a Professor that I have in my mind is of someone who sits for hours reading in a room with his pipe and a chimney. And if he makes a move, is because he is going for a walk with his dog.

I know that Leadership Prof. Juan Carlos Pastor reads a lot. However, instead of a walk he trains really hard cycling, swimming and running. Thriathon is his passion.

Triathlon is considered by some to have its beginnings in 1920s France. According to triathlon historian and author Scott Tinley, the origin of triathlon is attributed to a race during the 1920s–1930s that was called variously “Les trois sports”, “La Course des Débrouillards”, and “La course des Touche à Tout.” This race is held every year in France near Joinville-le-Pont, in Meulan and Poissy.

In this video Prof. Pastor draws very interesting lessons from the 3 sports he practices. Leadership is also a matter of hard training he seems be saying all the time.

Chicago Heights

In “The American way of life” Ashley Montagu described Hell as the pocket edition of Chicago. Well, Organizational Behaviour Professor Tara Wernsing tells me that she doesn’t care about Chicago’s corrupt and dubious past. As a Chicagoan she just loves the vibe of the city, although she now lives in Madrid.

In this video Prof. Wernsing uses Chicago skyscrapers to talk about leadership. Among other things, she says that the one thing leadership and these amazing buildings have in common is that they both require dreamers and realists.

Something else Prof. Wernsing said off camera is that she has a feeling that there is a third career out there waiting for her. She doesn’t know exactly what but she is sure that some big change lies ahead. It’s incredibly interesting to hear her talk not only about her field of expertise but about life in general.

In addition to all this, she loves to run and practice different kinds of personal defense…

The Cook

One of my all-time favorite films is The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover by Peter Greenaway. It’s a great story and the cinematography is excellent. I would’ve loved to have been able to render my own small homage to this film, but unfortunately there are no thieves I can think of around here to work into the script. The cook only won´t do!!!

Joking aside, I’m delighted to say that what I do have is an excellent cook, namely Leadership Professor Balvinder Powar. He is not only capable of masterfully mixing ingredients to create a delicious dish out of almost nothing, but also of using cooking as a metaphor to talk about leadership, Gandhi and life in general.

I enjoyed listening to Prof. Powar as much as I enjoyed tasting the dish he prepared during the shoot. I just love Indian food…

P.S. If you get the chance, try the Indian food at Tandoori Station, where we shot this video. You’ll like it, believe me.


IE Business School leadership professor Margarita Mayo uses tango dancing as a metaphor to speak about leadership.

In this video IE Business School leadership professor Margarita Mayo uses tango dancing as a metaphor to speak about leadership. She draws an interesting comparison between the two from the perspective of the dancer’s role in tango.

The origin of the word tango has always intrigued me. There are many theories about its roots. One is that it is actually an onomatopoeic term because the word tango sounds like the drums used in early forms of the dance. Opposers of this theory say that the drum was never a typical tango instrument. The first tango instruments were the violin, guitar, flute, and later a concertina-style instrument called the bandoneon.

Another theory is that the word tango originated from the Italian word tangere, which means ‘to touch’. However, considering that early tango did not feature the close embrace it is known for today, the word tangere is hardly likely to be the origin.

Some say that the most plausible theory is that which claims the word tango has African roots. In several African languages, tango means indoors – the closed space which was used for dancing… Well, who knows. The fact is that tango has become a dance form that is admired the world over.

Maybe we can’t be certain about the origin of the word tango, but one thing is for sure and that is that the world needs meaningful leadership. Listen to what Prof. Mayo has to say about both. You might end up wanting to dance with her just like Prof. Burak Konyuncu from Rouen Business School did.

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