An Aristotelian Perspective
New Horizons in Leadership Studies series
and acknowledgements I suppose that most people write to convey information and knowledge they already possess. I write primarily to begin to learn about something that interests me; as part of an eﬀort to try to make sense of matters which everyone else may be talking about, but – to my mind – rather aimlessly and without reaching any robust conclusions. This was how I started my research on corporate governance. (To what extent I still am very much of a novice or learner in the ﬁeld, even after ﬁnishing this book, I leave to the kindly reader to respond.) Once more, to guide me in my inquiry, I chose Aristotle, particularly his treatise on The Politics. In the same way that my previous work, The Moral Capital of Leaders. Why Virtue Matters could be considered a reading of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics addressed to a business audience, this present volume may be taken as a digest of The Politics for members of corporate boards and directors of organizations. The ﬁrst two chapters identify my point of departure, that is, the dominant, commonplace understanding both of the ﬁrm – a ‘money-making machine’ – and of corporate governance – compliance by ‘box-ticking’. I challenge this peacefully accepted and widespread notion of the ﬁrm by presenting a case that serves as a counterexample: Tasubinsa certainly seeks proﬁts, but only in a manner subservient to its main goal, the complete social integration of the mentally handicapped who constitute more than 90 per cent of its workforce. To...