To Boston: Our Hope for You, Courage

Today, we grieve for those lost, hurt, affected in Boston. We are energized by those who tried to help others in the horrors of the blasts. We pray for the law enforcement and police officers leading the way to resolve the conflict at hand. To the men and women living and working in Boston, who are now on lockdown, our hope for you -- courage.

Early in 2001, before September 11, the father of modern management Peter Drucker said, "The next 10 years will be years of great political turmoil in many parts of the world, including the United States." Life was lovely in that bubble before September 11, and some people were puzzled by Peter's pessimism. How sadly prescient Peter's message was -- and continues to be.

The challenges we face will continue, and turmoil is not new to our people.

But in these early, uncertain days during a national tragedy, leadership emerges -- leaders in all three sectors mobilize, pursue, lead, we contribute our own unique share to building community, healing and unifying our people.

For it is the responsibility of each one of us to respond, to be leaders of the future. And we see this leadership in Boston, today.

We cannot discern the future, yet I can go back to the leadership lessons learned on September 11 and in the days that followed.

A country that not too long ago complained, "Where have all the heroes gone?" discovered on September 11 not one hero or a dozen but thousands, demonstrating that in this democracy heroes die to save others and heroes live to lead another day. Quality, character, courage, and "beyond the call" describe those who responded to tragedies in the air and on the ground in New York, at the Pentagon, and in Western Pennsylvania.

Dispersed leadership -- spreading the responsibilities of leadership across the organization until we have not a leader or the leader but leaders at every level -- was once questioned by some, but now reinforced, and dispersed leadership is no longer debatable.

Our time calls us to move beyond the old walls and together find the courage to carry on as we are called to do. We do not know what lies ahead, yet whatever the challenge, leaders will rise, finding the heart, the language, the caring that embraces and sustains.