Influencer Miguel Goede

Interview March 2020

Could you share with us some information about your family life?
I do not like to talk about myself. But let us share this, I am married and have two children, a son and a daughter. I have two brothers and one sister. My mother is still with us. My father passed away. My parents are our role models. We were stimulated to study, become good at what we do and be (small)leaders. Currently, I am finishing the editing of the autobiography of our father. He wrote the book in 2004 and passed away in 2016. It is inspiring to read his life lessons. His message is about family and doing good. Before we gained any consciousness, he was a labor leader in the field of education and in politics. He abandoned all that for the children.

Could you share with us some of your educational background and past professional experiences, as we know that you are an entrepreneur? And what kind of business are you exactly in now? Do you have your own company and what is its name?
I have a Ph.D. in Governance. I have masters in political science and public administration. I have been a civil servant, management consultant, university professor and chancellor. I have my own consultancy from 2001, I started just before leaving Arthur Andersen (AA). I operate under the brands Goede Consultants 5.0 and the virtual University of Governance 5.0. I also facilitated a virtual think tank 5.0. At AA I learned to work globally and virtually. I also became an expert on strategy and change management. Still, I am not a commercial consultant by choice. In Curaçao, you need to sell your soul for a job, and mine is not for sale.

You have always been very active in triggering macro topics on the island since 1997 and further, like on the 20th of February the 2020 looking back and looking into the future and also trying to put corporate governance on the national agenda, you have been consistent in your efforts. What is the driving force to do this?
This is a gift I have. I am just doing what I have to do. These events do not cost me much energy, time or money. To be good at what I do, I constantly read, follow the news, read reports, and reflect to dissect the trends. We wrote it 2020 in 1997. I was in my thirties. We thought we co-create this vision for Curaçao and work to materialize it. We did what we could but many didn’t understood what we were about. In 2019, we decided that in 2020 we would look back. While working on the project, I had to make a big effort to involve the next generation. There is no bridge between the two. I have constructed a small one. It is the task of those who are now in their thirties to create the vision 2030. I am facilitating the process. I hope they will learn from the past. Their task is not easy. As I explain in my book Society 5.0, there are huge challenges ahead.

We have come to understand that you are also an author, how many books have you written up to now and where can we find or buy your latest book Society 5.0 ”We and I” and why have you written this book?
I have been thinking about this matter from the days of the late Wim de Vrijer, one of my dear mentors who died several years ago. He used to visit me every Saturday. He never missed an appointment. He always taught us about “We” and “I”. Last summer in Europe, I started buying and reading books and writing at the same time. On 02.02.2020 I launched the book.

In this book, I explain the current global crisis, and how we should reconstruct society in response to it, and why. I do not have all the answers, but simply want to contribute to the discussion about solving the crisis and transforming society. I start by explaining the crisis we are facing. This involves exploring what the signals are and showing that climate change is probably the key signal that manifests itself in other signals. This is followed by explaining that the neoliberal market is the cause of this crisis. The neoliberal ideology has eroded all values and undermined social cohesion. We then move on to the exploration of the phenomena of the market versus society and government, focusing on how the neoliberal ideology (market rationale) infiltrated all the Three Domains (government, civil society, and private sector). This is supported by an analysis of the corporation as the main actor in the neoliberal world. The analysis demonstrates that the corporation, if it were human, would be qualified as a psychopath, which poses the question whether it can be cured.

The discussion then moves on to consider how neoliberalism, in the form of corporations and their lobbyists, is threatening democracy; and how this creates opportunities for populists and other less democratic structures. These are global phenomena, not limited to any one part of the world. The question that arises is whether these divides are useful in this one world. Will smart cities resolve our problems? How will the younger and older generations collaborate to improve the world? Of what relevance will religion be in the future? What is the new society 5.0? Is it the world of purposeful organizations? And how will we get there? Will the corporation be able to adapt to the changed circumstances?|

This book is a follow-up on Curaçao 3.0Mindset 3.0 and Caribbean 3.0.
3.0 is about the 4th industrial revolution and smart city and nation. In 5.0, I argue that we need to fundamentally need to transform the balance between “We” and “I”. Between “corporations” and “humans”.

The problem is that everything is market, money-driven. Money is the only value left. The new generation has to find out that materialism will bring us to the cliff at the end of humanity. The earth will survive anyhow.

What is your BIG WHY or driving motivation to be who you are right now?
I want to accomplish my life mission and use my gifts. I do not know what my mission is exactly, but by being on my journey, I will get there. I try to listen to find out more about my mission. They say that your passion shows your mission, so I keep doing what I like. That is hosting these meetings and trying to connect generations because the two do not like to talk with each other.

What are the challenges that you are dealing with? And how are you dealing with these different challenges you confront?
The challenge is to find space to do my thing. There is a lot of obstruction or lack of cooperation. Curaçao society is challenging. Collaboration is not our strength. On the other hand, we envy others. This envy leads to the destruction of the one we envy. Character assassination is the weapon of choice.

Do you use your inner voice to evaluate when dilemma’s show up? How does that work for you?
Yes, I usually make decisions before going to bed and confirm this in the morning when I wake up. I must be careful not the overthinking. I am also working to listen to my heart. Many of us do not do that.

How are you trying also to keep up with your personal knowledge and skills levels?
I constantly read, write, discuss and organize events. I travel, and during travel I read and write. I usually start my publications that way.

What are your strengths?

Well we just mentioned some in the answers to questions you asked, but I can also say: I am an analyst who can implement.

Do you have hobbies or interests that you are also passionate about?
I like sports, I like to swim, bike, run, movies, reading, websites, social media. I like plants and my family.

If you as Miguel would meet a stranger on the bus (let say in Norway or the US) and they would ask you to introduce yourself, what would you answer?
Miguel Goede. Often I try to explain a little about myself, but it does not make much sense to myself (ha,ha,ha). I should have a commercial elevator pitch to get business, but I still do not have one.

How would you describe Miguel in one word or one sentence?
Rich in the sense of abundance, complex and deep. I can entertain myself.

Who are the persons that have inspired you the most in your career?
I am not a fan of anyone. But to name a few: Roel in ‘t VeldPaul Frissen, Wim de Vrijer and many others. My father, brothers and friends.

What is a trait that is still work in progress?
Making others use my skills and talents. I am not good at selling myself and my projects.

What was a defining moment in your life?
Marriage, becoming a father. Getting my Ph.D. Getting fired for no reason and stay in court for seven years. Many people have no idea what this does to a person. I have written a book about it. I do not propagate the book. It is a book for later. When everybody has forgotten about what happened. One of the subtitles is: “Prohibi pa lubida”

Where do you want to be five years from now with your career and personally?
I have constant work and be in a position where I can choose from what projects I will take. These projects are my hobby.

What would you want your Loved Ones, family, friends and others to say about you let’s say 20 years from now?
He made life understandable and easy and hence enjoyable.

What makes you stay optimistic about the future of Curaçao?
Hope and Curaçao is an interesting object of study, a living lab. And virtually I can work all over the world.

Contact information:
Upcoming conference: Vision Curacao 2030 on 30.03.2020

One of the 250 Influencers
Miguel Goede is a scholar and author of different books and peer-reviewed scientific articles. He is also a trend watcher and enabler of discussions on challenges that on a macro level, based on international developments, need our local attention. As a visionary and implementer during the past 30 something years, on a consistent basis, Miguel has facilitated in different platforms and through his books, a diversity of issues. All issues that he firmly believes needs attention on a local level, like: Leadership; Curaçao 2020; Governance; Sustainability and through his books Mindset 3.0, Caribbean 3.0 related to the 4th industrial revolution; Smart City and Nation culminating in what some say his best overall work until now: “Society 5.0”, where he argues that we need to fundamentally need to transform the balance between “We” and “I”.

His integrity and his conscious choice to be an independent thinker, over the years have not always been easy. This and his consistency over the years has made us deeply respect Miguel and we are convinced that we will hear much more of him in the coming years, as he had made us curious by saying: “..great things are still to happen..”.

As a member of the business and educational sector, we consider Miguel one of the 250 Influencers in Curaçao.

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