This weekend marked the end of an era. Oh sure, Michael Jackson died and that’s really too bad. Although I was aware of Michael Jackson throughout my childhood, I didn’t really get into him until my senior year in high school. That’s when JEB brought in the MJ HIStory album to play while we were announcing for women’s lacrosse games. I recall thinking, “OMG, this music is amazing–what a fool I’ve been not to have enjoyed it for the previous 18 years of my life!”
Yes, the King of Pop has died. And the King of Rock n’ Roll has been dead for 30 years. How many more “King of”s will there be before we have to search for new regal titles. The Emperor of Rap? The Arch Duke of Hip Hop? The Sultans of Swing–wait, that’s already taken. I also wonder if references to body parts of musical genres are related to those genres’ regality. For example, when Huey Lewis sings that “the heart of rock n’ roll is still beatin’,” is he arguing that Elvis is still alive?
No matter, this is not the end of the era to which this blog post refers. In fact, I am referring to the fact that finally, after almost six months of daily reading, I have finished the IMD MBA Class of 2008 Yearbook! What a labor of love! It is amazing that such a small group of my classmates were able to put together such a high-quality product with such little time and so many distractions (ICP, job search, etc.). It’s an outstanding example of crowd-sourcing and of leadership. I’ve always held that the test of true leadership is when your followers don’t have to do what you say. You can’t fire them or penalize their salaries. In this case the Yearbook Committee was able to assemble hundreds of articles and pictures through sheer determination and creating a coherent vision that the rest of us bought into. Bravo!
And speaking of the Yearbook Committee, I visited one of its members (everyone’s favorite German Engineer) this weekend in Cham, just outside of Zug. He and his wife and 8-month-old son have really set up a good life for themselves out there. We went for a walk along Lake Zug and dined al fresco with fresh pasta and homemade sauce. La dolce vita!
The real treat of course was getting to know their son, who was in utero during my first group with the German Engineer and who arrived during my ICP with him. Their son was very well behaved and showed his father’s curiosity combined with his mother’s kind expressions. I spend so much of my life focusing on what’s wrong (with Poken’s business processes, with the world’s energy consumption, etc.) that it’s just really heart warming to see that, in some parts of the world, good people are starting families and living good lives. Note that I don’t mean to imply that they live glutonous lives–quite the contrary given that they focus on recycling and buying local produce–simply good lives. Many thanks to this burgeoning family for being great hosts and I hope all continues to go well for them in an era that does not end!