Poor leadership in the region stifling progress

The state of leadership in Barbados and the region is poor.

That was the conclusion of venture capitalist Scott Hilton-Clarke, the founder and chief executive officer of Inspiration Laboratories, a firm focused on international business development.

Hilton-Clarke told the Virgin Group-led Business is an Adventure leadership conference at the Hilton Barbados Resort this morning that a recent survey by his management consulting firm had found that employees were screaming out for good leadership.

“If I were asked to write a tragedy on the state of leadership, I would focus on development. This area was actually quite sad because as I read the comments and feedback, people are clamouring to be developed and they are being denied, and frankly we are not developing our people appropriately,” he said, adding that “more depressing”, was that many of those surveyed said they were not privy to training opportunities.

Hilton-Clarke said too often leaders had a “my way or the highway mentality”, which was stifling good leadership.

He did not give details of the survey, which he said was conducted anonymously, but said respondents were asked simply to rate their bosses and share the reasons for the scores they gave, adding that they “actually poured their hearts out”.

Likening leadership to a sport, the venture partner at Omnia Ventures, an Abu Dhabi based venture capital and private equity firm, said it was critical that leaders track the performance of their workers if they wanted improved results.

Hilton-Clarke was speaking on The State of Leadership in the Region.

During the event, which was punctuated with short inspirational clips, the large audience had the opportunity to hear from high-ranking officials as they discussed the issue of leadership.

The panel included Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson; Principal of the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus Professor Eudine Barriteau; President and Group Chief Executive Officer of Neal & Massy Trinidad Gervase Warner; Chief Executive Officer of the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship – Caribbean Lisandra Rickards and Consultant Gynaecologist and Head of The Barbados Fertility Clinic Dr Juliet Skinner.

The panellists agreed that there was need for more authentic leadership, pointing out that a lot of current leadership styles were based on the way people in the region have been conditioned over the years.

Sir Richard said too many people were operating companies without thinking about what others wanted, adding that a part of good leadership consisted of helping to solve economic, social and environmental issues.

“Once you begin to get the business established, I believe that every single business in the world need to be addressing wider problems. If we leave the problems of the world to governments and the social sector they can do so much but they can’t sort out the world’s problems,” the British business magnate said.

He encouraged people to give others a second chance and “think kindly” of those who failed when they attempted a business venture.

8 Responses to Poor leadership in the region stifling progress

  1. Sandor Barker
    Sandor Barker May 3, 2017 at 11:20 pm

    You are so true Mr Scott Hilton Clarke. No truer word have been spoken.

  2. Itz Queen
    Itz Queen May 3, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    Poor leadership and serving of oneself.

  3. Sunshine Sunny Shine May 4, 2017 at 12:16 am

    We fully understand our leadership issues in Barbados. If leadership in any entity is bad you can expect the performance levels of many to reflect that leadership. The results will impact the way we do our business and make our decisions. Sounds so much like what has Barbados on a downward trend.

  4. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn May 4, 2017 at 12:57 am

    You should let us know if Barbados is one of these Caribbean countries. Say Barbados is one who to Blame. No Prime minister can’t make him self a leader. You will have to blame the people. If I give you a chance like the westindies team in one test match ,and you fail in the first test match in all two innings. Do you think that I am going to pick you for the second test match. Only if I am blind like Courtney Brown ,westindies chairman of selector. In this case we will have to blame the people. Where their is poor leathership the people perished. They were warned. They brought it up on them selves. Now a lot of them bawling for election to call. It really surprised me to see people with good education background cannot see. Barbados is a country accustomed to good leathership. A lot of Bajan never see their prime minister in the public . What that tells you.

  5. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn May 4, 2017 at 1:37 am

    Trinidad is the same thing.Crime running the country. Rowley cannot handle. HOLNESS from Jamaica trying. Also crime have the upper hand. Gonsalves in St Vincent trying. But the airport have him choke. God bless him with fertile soil to grow Marijuana. But he selfish and greedy. Only his minister and his people want to eat from marijuana. Doctor Harris from St Kitts look as thought he trying to be a good leather. Antigua Brown. Is look as thought corruption taking over Antigua. Mitchell in grenada is trying hard to bring back grenada. They made a big mistake when they gave Mr Thomas a chance. He was a very very poor leather. One of the worst grenada has seen. DOMINICA .corruptions look as thought it taking over Skerrit. St lucia Chastanet crime taking over.He don’t know what to do. He bawling on national television. I think that Timothy Harris is the best emerging leather I saw right now in the Caribbean. BARBADOS people bawling for Election to call . They make a big mistake when Thompson died . A lot of them suffering all now , some of them want Election tomorrow . But this prime minister is going down to the wire . Maybe miss MOTTLEY might make a great leader if given a chance. You never know.

  6. Everick May 4, 2017 at 6:01 am

    Yup. Leadership. And don’t forget this thing we have called democracy.
    It has given us a system, where every ” long eared galoot ” with knotty hair and his pants half way down his backside, , has the right to vote. And decide my fate..
    We have to change the way/ system and only allow those with an interest in the development of their country to have the right to select a government.
    Obviously this needs more thought to make it work(and it will never happen in my lifetime) but one can always hope.

  7. jrsmith May 4, 2017 at 7:54 am

    We all keep going on about (Colonialism) but that in itself had us under control, because our politicians had to show accountability… We go on about (Independence ) that in itself still carry (Dependency) even after 50 years for barbados , we were independent for a while ,until our politicians corruptly caught up with how the white man religiously control our black people…..
    We need in barbados to stop going about (Independence) ,who is going to show how we have prospered even back from 4 decades..1% still controls Barbados , protected by our politicians..
    Our black people in barbados hears what the politicians want us to hear and show us the confusion ,which they want us to believe
    because they have us where they want us , the people cannot ask any question , because they are scared this leaving black bajans with the mindset of the party faithful…
    This is something I heard in Barbados, from a bajan lady I would think age between 50 to 55, all we seeing is shite in barbados all over , de road , we aint hah no water to wash it away,everything gone bad , but god bly , ah I am a dems through and through , so we got to win the next time round….
    This scares me , because we can have the same government in power after the next election,,, what would bajans do………….

  8. F.A.Rudder May 4, 2017 at 11:25 am

    Well said Sir Richard! As we travel this Global Village we will find the three styles of traditional leadership. They are listed as Democratic, Authoritarian and Dictatorial! As the world turns human society says, “Choose one”! Today’s leadership is beyond self satisfaction or the Super ego; its ecological, environmental and innovation all combined! These qualities distinguish and establish a true world leader.


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