Today, on my lunch break, I caught a portion of a cable TV report about our Coast Guard rescuing people floating their way from Cuba to Florida. One young man rescued admitted he had “made it” on his ninth try.
I’m intrigued by stories of those who risk their lives to come here without legal permission. There are so many leadership subplots to every one of their stories.
Coincidentally, this past week at home, my wife and I were the beneficiaries of immigrant’s skills: lawn care by Ramiro of Mexican heritage; kitchen and master bath tile installation by Malan from Serbia; carpet installed by Francisco and his wife from Mexico.
We’re lucky to live here in America for many reasons. If you look below the surface appearances, our status as a country and our citizenship equality and opportunities are by design … by our leaders. This country was founded to escape governmental tyranny and lack of opportunity. Two hundred-plus years later we continue to attract citizens of the world who come here for a better life.
So the first subplot of leadership has to do with the leaders civilization architecture … in business, we call it culture, but I digress. Our country’s heritage has always attracted those who wanted a new start and a better future. The reason for leaving their native country was because their leaders had failed architecture in the areas of misguided military conquests, poor macro economic models and religious or ethnic persecutions, for example.
The second leadership subplots is not as evident, but exists under the current constant media coverage of immigration. For Ramiro, Malan and Francisco they made a more difficult leadership choice. They left their families and abandoned lifelong possessions without certainty of success or guarantee of prosperity. I don’t think it’s a stretch to consider them as employees (citizens) of the nations where they chose to live. I’m reminded of the old cliché that people leave their current employment for more money. Yet, in reality, they leave for more respect and opportunity … which likely leads to more money. This is the subplot of personal leadership.
The third subplot is around those on the sidelines who are charged with explaining and commenting on our President’s call to action, “our immigration system is broken.” Aside from the party politics (including the last six administrations) of maneuvering to lockup Dreamer families as indebted voters, the truth is that years from now the public will vote for those who told the truth and have a better plan ( architecture ) during their term. People know the truth … for immigrants that’s what attracted them to come here. Right? They didn’t come here because of network or blogosphere spin or public opinion polls. They came here to be a part of our story … and their understanding came from hearing the story from those had come before.
Spin changes, but human desires do not. Ask the young man who made it on his ninth try!