Fri | Aug 18, 2017

In leadership, there's no such thing as personal opinions

Published:Saturday | August 12, 2017 | 8:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

 

I read Clinton Chisholm's 'Bain's lesson for religious right' of the Friday, August 11, 2017 edition of The Gleaner and observed that it addressed at least two major points.

Allow me, therefore, to express a generic but fundamental rule of the boardroom, specifically as it affects the right of Bishop Howard Gregory and Garnett Roper to state their personal opinions.

As chairman of a religious organisation myself, we have to be very careful of what we claim to be personal opinions because such may do harm to the organisations we represent. Therefore, when we have a 'personal opinion' to publish, whether from the pulpit or in a newspaper, wisdom and an unwritten rule is that we check with the organisation first to seek concurrence.

In other words, when you represent an organisation at the highest level, there is no such luxury as a personal opinion.You are both the face and the voice of that organisation.

Personal opinions remain at home and in the boardroom, but decisions and opinions outside must reflect the collective and pervasive position of your organisation.

Conclude then that a personal opinion is a right that every incumbent at the highest level surrenders for a collective good. Imagine a prime minister or a president making (even tweeting) a statement against policy and then claiming that it is a personal opinion. I rest my case.

S.M. WILLIAMS

sweng19@hotmail.com