From outer to inner space – a Leadership perspective

”Development is not simply more and more of the same thing, it’s daring to take the step across into something new, to explore the unknown and to find the opportunities that are concealed within the challenge.”

As human beings, we have enormous powers of creativity within us, but for them to emerge, we must dare to take the step into the new. This requires us to know ourselves and the potential we have. Technical development is important – but human development is more important. Knowledge about people is hence the crucial success factor for modern businesses.

“Humanity is now witnessing the greatest technological explosion in any era throughout history. Part of this technological explosion has been space travel, especially the Apollo Program, which has helped Man to walk on the moon for the first time.

What I did as part of this team was to represent a world that has broken free from the shackles of gravity and begun to explore the universe.

A key part of this exploration is for us to start looking at ourselves in a different way. Our ancestors did not have this problem. It is often said that we raise our children for a world that will no longer exist by the time they become adults. This is absolutely true in the modern era in which we find ourselves with computers, nuclear weapons and space travel. We have begun a journey, the likes of which humanity has never experienced.

For me, this is a crucial turning-point. We humans on planet Earth must meet the challenge that the future presents and learn to live richly, prosperously, securely and satisfactorily during an era where we run the risk of being overwhelmed if we cannot see things from the right perspective.

Many people are increasingly worried about the direction in which the world is going and that is why what the individual can do and what role the individual actually plays are important in the shaping of world events. Our ability to solve the world’s problems depends on the individual.

It is not true that the individual is powerless. On the contrary. If we are to have peace and prosperity on Earth, it is crucial that individuals from all nations and cultures care about, involve themselves and start making the right decisions.

The above is a quote from Edgar Mitchell. In 1966, he took part in the Apollo 14 mission together with Alan Shepard and Stuart A. Roosa. After Shepard, Mitchell was the sixth man to walk on the moon.

Taking Mitchell’s extra-terrestrial perspective of Earth as our starting point, we need to look into the future, observe the dynamics in society in an era of computers and space travel – and ask ourselves how individuals can control the development towards a more productive life and meet the future with a better idea of existence.

Human knowledge

Every company’s business idea is a reflection of how it perceives human beings. No knowledge has more power to influence the company’s development than an in-depth understanding of who human beings really are.

Companies face ever greater problems. An inaccurate or limited view of the opportunities open to humanity prevents a company from confronting full on the challenges it faces.

Many of the aspirations that fired the incredible dynamism of western industrial society have now been realized. Aspirations that have become achievements lose their potency. Redundant, they can no longer inspire and act merely as crutches instead of being the signposts to the future they once were.

Shattering limits

Development is not simply more and more of the same thing, it’s daring to take the step across into something new, to explore the unknown and to find the opportunities that are concealed within the challenge. From our experience of the past we can build a new vision and a new meaning to our lives. New inspiration for our business and for ourselves. When we have this insight, we can smash through barriers and what was previously infeasible can now become living reality.

I want to call forth creativity and creative power, intuition and innovation. We all have these inside us, but only when we become aware of them can we make use of these powers and abilities. Only when we dare to take the step into the new will we meet the unshackled human, will we become complete human beings. Then we will create the living companies relevant to our time.

You yourself are the most important company. When you achieve success, your company will also be successful. But this can only achieved by breaking the pattern that is preventing you from living according to your inner wishes.

So tell me: what are they?


Jan Boström founder and Partner at Gaia Leadership

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  1. […] Most of us will need to continue to develop our organisations to become more AGILE so its worth noting that the 3 most differentiating practices for the most agile companies are CLARITY OF ROLE, TOP DOWN INNOVATION and CAPTURING EXTERNAL IDEAS.  GAIA Leadership, where I hold a Board position, pledges the importance of engaging leadership, and to consider even yourself a company. […]

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