3 Leadership Lessons from Amartya Sen "We spend billions of dollars trying to understand the origins of the universe, while we still don't understand the conditions for a stable society, a functioning economy, or peace." Dirk Helbing, Professor of Sociology at ETH in Zurich Examine the Problems Start by asking the right questions. Sen is a trained economist. His Nobel prize is in Economics. However, he realized that in order to address the larger questions of poverty and inequality he saw in places like South Asia, he couldn’t rely on numbers alone. Ask the Right Questions He needed philosophy and other disciplines to begin to ask the right questions on how best make better decisions about the poorest people in the world. How closely are we looking at the problems we face? Whether in a committee of seven, an organization of one or one hundred? Are we asking the right questions? Go Where the Questions Lead The questions may lead you somewhere uncomfortable. You could be sent toward a mirror and end up asking yourself questions. You might be asking people questions that don’t want to make the causal links and jumps you think are obvious. Those same people might be the ones on our own committees and teams. Go where the questions lead you. Ask them. The answers matter. Are We Willing to Empower? For people to volunteer in my religious community, they must feel welcome, be able to physically get there, and be well-informed so they can integrate into the life of the larger community. It is very easy to take this process for granted. What are we taking for granted, believing that everyone knows they can participate in but can’t and as such they are inhibited from being fully present?