Here we are, on the edge of a maelstrom of global events, geographically, politically, economically, environmentally, socially and culturally, all with potentially far-reaching outcomes. And, while those outcomes may differ by continent, country, and even locality, they will not be isolated, or “ring-fenced,” to use a popular term. The entire world and all of its inhabitants will be touched in one way or another. Such is the “flatness,” the oneness, the absolute inter-connectedness – yes, the globalization, of our world.
While this is very unsettling (given the types of negative events that are taking place), this may be the trigger point, the time when the collective backs of all humanity are against the proverbial wall, and a time when we should collectively declare that we are not going to “waste a looming apocalypse.”
As the outcomes play out in ways both hugely negative and hugely positive, despite the attempted meddling of our current leaders trying to shape them, this will be one of mankind’s most disruptive periods. Therefore, it will drive fundamental transformation, either proactively by design or reactively by default.
So, this period will either witness the emergence of a new super class of global leaders, capable of managing and integrating all of the transformations across the world, geographically, politically, economically, environmentally, socially and culturally, or it will be a period of big steps backward. How far back is anybody’s guess.
In my opinion, this period of seismic, world changing events will determine the fate of mankind for as far into the future as we can imagine.
And what, you might be wondering, does the beginning or ending of the world have to do with the Gap, the subject of this issue\’s feature story (\”A Case For Euthanasia? The Gap On Life Support\”) It’s perfectly analogous.
The maelstrom swirling around the Gap has reached epic and game-changing intensity. CEO Glenn Murphy and his team will either right the ship and find a growth trajectory, and real fast, or watch the business descend into failure.
Under the 20-year watch of CEO Mickey Drexler, its famed and storied prince-of-all-merchant-prices, the Gap had meteoric growth. Then, due to a number of both internal and external events, such as intensifying competition, overexpansion and the brand’s declining cool image, things reached a tipping point.
Gap’s ubiquity became antiquity and its “cool” became commodity.
So, the Gap realized the negative outcome of its race to ubiquity, even as its leaders tried to shape a positive outcome. What was needed then, just as the world needs now, is the emergence of a new super leader, which Drexler certainly was, through its explosive growth phase.
That new super leader has yet to emerge. Mr. Murphy is the second attempt, and the clock is ticking down to midnight.
As always, have a good read.