Carlos Rymer

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Archive for the tag “leonel fernandez”

Candidatos Buscan La Presidencia Sin Ofrecer Soluciones

Con los candidatos presidenciales ya elegidos para los principales partidos políticos de la República Dominicana, la campaña para las elecciones del 2012 ha arrancado. Basado en los problemas nacionales que la administración de Leonel Fernández no ha podido solucionar — como la desigualdad, la falta de empleo y competitividad, y la debilidad que se percibe en las instituciones publicas — los candidatos han lanzado plataformas basadas en confrontar problemas complejos y de gran importancia. Danilo Medina ha propuesto un compromiso con la inversión social y el fortalecimiento de instituciones publicas; Hipolito Mejia promete eliminar la “corrupción general” que se percibe en la administración de Leonel Fernandez; Carlos Morales Troncoso tiene como prioridad fortalecer el PRSC; y Guillermo Moreno promete un cambio a las políticas de los partidos tradicionales para que existe honestidad e inclusión popular.

Para cada uno de estos candidatos, existe un gran respaldo dentro de los círculos que los respaldan. Fuera de las encuestas, existen los(as) que ven a Danilo Medina como un líder honesto que puede seguir las políticas consideradas exitosas de la administración de Leonel Fernandez; los(as) que ven a Hipolito Mejia como una alternativa a la corrupción percibida en la administración de Leonel Fernandez; los(as) que ven a Carlos Morales Troncoso como alguien que puede fortalecer el PRSC y convertirlo en un partido significativo nuevamente; y los(as) que ven a Guillermo Moreno como alguien con una visión de un país que puede solucionar todos los problemas que los partidos tradicionales no han podido solucionar. Cada candidato ofrece un mensaje que gusta a diversas partes de la población, desde los jóvenes que quieren una alternativa significativa como la que promete ofrecer Guillermo Moreno a las comunidades más vulnerables que ven a Hipólito Mejía como alguien que tendrá mas atención a los problemas básicos de la población.

Mientras las diversas partes de la población se sienten conforme con su candidato preferido, la realidad es que ningún candidato ha ofrecido un plan sensible para solucionar los problemas críticos que enfrenta la República Dominicana. Por ejemplo, recientemente los candidatos se comprometieron a asegurar que el 4% del PIB sea destinado a la educación, pero ninguno ofreció detalles explicando cuales gastos gubernamentales serán recortados o cuales impuestos serán creados para lograr tal compromiso. Ningún candidato ha ofrecido detalles sobre como el país puede combatir la inflación — la cual en gran parte depende de los mercados internacionales — así como la corrupción, la delincuencia, y la desigualdad. Ningún candidato a ofrecido un plan de como se generaran empleos, especialmente para la juventud, ni como trabajaran con las generadoras eléctricas y la CDEEE para continuar el progreso hacia un sistema eléctrico que ofrezca energía asequible y constante a toda la población.

Si en realidad queremos un cambio en República Dominicana, no basta apoyar un candidato que tenga un mensaje que guste a un punto de vista popular. Hay que demandar de los candidatos que ofrescan detalles de como solucionaran los problemas que enfrenta el país, y luego ser críticos de tales detalles para asegurar que en realidad son validos y conformen a un plan realista que pueda sacar al país de los problemas que mas preocupan a la población, como el desempleo, la delincuencia, y la corrupción.

Por mas que veamos a los candidatos como opciones para un cambio, resultaran en lo mismo que han resultado administraciones anteriores, las cuales han logrado crecimiento en la economía pero no han logrado eliminar problemas críticos como el desempleo, la desigualdad, la baja calidad de la educación, y la competitividad. Es hora de que la población reflexione si es aceptable que los candidatos ofrezcan un mensaje en blanco, sin ningún tipo de análisis ni planificación de como aseguraran que sus promesas se hagan realidad.

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Why Leaders Ought to Communicate Frequently

Frequent CommunicationOne of the most difficult tasks for any leader — whether of a large organization or a small group — is to communicate frequently and effectively. Communication is not just important because it helps shape debates that lead to important decisions being made, but also because organizations need a sense of direction to keep the engine going. Leaders who don’t communicate frequently and effectively probably outnumber those who do. This is very noticeable when you take entire societies as an organized group, where the people are typically in constant distrust of their leaders because such leaders fail to communicate frequently and effectively.

Over the past two years, the importance of constant and effective communication has become so noticeable to me as I’ve witnessed different leaders employ very different strategies to communicate to the public. I want to focus exclusively on two very good government leaders to whom I can relate and whom I believe have very different strategies of engaging with those whom they represent. While I strongly believe frequent and effective communication is important for any leader, whether at the corporate, civic, or governmental level, I chose to compare two government leaders because of the impact their strategies have in shaping a nation.

The first leader, if you already guessed correctly, is President Barack Obama of the United States. Aside from having a highly successful electoral campaign in which records were set in terms of engagement, President Obama has made it a priority for his administration to communicate frequently and effectively to the public. Not only is he in constant communication with the public — from constant appearances on TV to town halls to news conferences to videotaped weekly addresses to Twitter updates — but his entire cabinet is fully engaged with the public through social media, conferences, and public appearances. It is arguable that this has been the most engaging administration in U.S. history, in spite of the anger some may feel regarding agenda items that have yet to be accomplished.

The Obama administration’s frequent and effective communication has not just helped achieve the most productive legislative Congress in many years, but has also helped rally a nation into debating issues previous administrations largely ignored. Although I feel some anger at the fact that the President has consistently taken a centrist approach towards many issues when they fully deserve and warrant a more aggressive approach, I admire how President Obama has used messaging — messaging that a majority of people can appreciate and understand — as a tool to achieve key goals. While words don’t necessarily translate into deeds, I think many people can agree that President Obama’s frequent and effective communication has helped his administration achieve quite a lot over the past two years.

Now, on the other end of the spectrum, we have President Leonel Fernandez of the Dominican Republic, my country of origin. Here we have a leader who not only understands how to keep an economy growing and is very capable of designing effective policies, but who has been elected three times in the last 15 years (1996, 2004, and 2008). While a majority of Dominicans agree that President Fernandez is one of the best leaders the country has witnessed, a majority of them will also say that they disagree with the way President Fernandez is handling the government. A sweeping 2010 election where the majority party (Partido de la Liberacion Dominicana) took almost full control of government can be used as evidence of the President’s popularity, but it doesn’t deny the fact that most Dominicans disapprove of President Fernandez, precisely a result of how infrequently and ineffectively he communicates to the people about issues that matter to them.

Unlike President Obama, President Fernandez only speaks to the public on rare occasions, such as for his annual address to Congress or updates on emergency actions. As a result, the people don’t feel like they need to follow their leader to get a sense of direction of where the country is going and what they should strive to accomplish. When President Fernandez does speak directly to the public, he does so in such language that people do not understand or feel interested in what he’s talking about, often focusing on statistics rather than telling a story to which people can relate. Not only is this a bad way to negatively impact what is in fact good leadership, but it’s also a waste of power, as President Fernandez squanders all the opportunities he has to get people to think and behave in ways that could help his nation race for a better future.

Good leadership is not just based on how well you can manage a team, but also on how well you can communicate to that team so it knows what it must do to accomplish its goals. All too often leaders fail to understand how valuable a position they’re in, where they can easily grab an audience’s attention and shape a debate, a decision, a common cultural problem, or even behavior. Clearly, some leaders tend to achieve goals from the top down regardless of who is alienated at the bottom or in the middle. Yet oftentimes it is better to achieve goals by having all people on board the ship rowing forward. Leaders who want to become better at what they do should understand the importance of frequent and effective communication if they want to add further momentum to their organization’s engine.

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