Bill and Melinda Gates are billionaires. Bill could easily disappear to a private Caribbean island and live out his life in complete luxury. Perhaps he does enjoy that lifestyle more than I do but he also spends a great deal of time sharing his wealth with a lot of people who are not shareholders in his companies, not part of the elite 1% and not the movers and shakers who might ensure he stays wealthy.
Bill and Melinda share their money helping to lift people out of the bottom of society. They are the kind of role models that make me want to play the lottery so I can win, and then my wife and I could create our own foundation to give away money and help the poor. Bill and Melinda are the kind of wealthy people our world needs right now and I think they are starting to have an influence on other wealthy people in the world.
This positive role model and real action for change is the kind of leadership we truly need for a number of reasons.
First, Bill and Melinda are not bound to political cycles or boundaries, therefore avoiding the luke warm response from governments to helping outside their borders when it might negatively affect their results in the next election.
Second, Bill and Melinda are leaders who can make connections across governments, business and NGOs linked to actual objectives that they can deliver on without hoping that one of the partners doesn’t back out for some selfish reason of their own. They are strong enough to deliver, leveraged with partners but not controlled by them.
Third and finally, Bill and Melinda can share their stories of work and success with change without being dependent on main stream media covering their story. The internet has changed everything for people like them. Broadcasting with web content or streaming video and viral sharing with social media are incredibly powerful.
So, how does this relate to the people of the world living in a developed nation? The answer lies in our search for meaning.
I truly believe that Bill and Melinda achieve real life satisfaction from their actions. They don’t need to search for the meaning of life on our planet, they have found it.