The inauguration of Barack Obama is the culmination of three revolutions in American society—revolutions that the business community, indeed all communities, need to understand and embrace if it is to move forward successfully.
The Obama Presidency represents the rise of Gen Y and their culture. Gen Y’s use of social media technology, their post-diversity perspective (race, gender and sexual orientation aren’t a big deal) and their collaborativeness are transforming politics. They will transform business culture as well. So important was Gen Y in the election of Barack Obama, the generation got its own Youth Ball the night of his inauguration.
The Obama Presidency represents the return to checks and balances in economics, as well as politics. The anti-government, anti-regulation lassez faire economics of the Chicago School that led to the current deep recession will be replaced by a more centrist, balanced economic model. And political model as well.
And, most importantly, the Obama Presidency represents the beginning of a post-racial American culture. For someone like myself who remembers the violent civil “wars” in the South in the 60s over civil rights, it is a long-time coming. Race and gender will matter less in politics and business. The next battle ground will be around giving same-sex partners the same rights as different-sex partners. Remember, in the mid-60’s it was illegal for black and white people to marry in over a dozen Southern states. Amazing, right?
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