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Trailblazers Latinoamericanos: Colombia’s President Highlights Collaborative Leadership Imperative

Latin America

“May my legacy be to build with a human sense and a sense of equity.”

Iván Duque Márquez, President of Colombia, shared these powerful words at Salesforce’s ‘Trailblazers Latinoamericanos: Connecting Dreams with the Future’ event on February 11. Speaking to Alejandro Anderlic, Director of Government Affairs for Salesforce in Latin America, President Duque highlighted three key priorities for the Colombian government today, including:

  • Cultivating a message of fraternity and solidarity on the issue of migration in the region. “You do not need to be a rich country to be supportive and fraternal, and be fair and human,” he said.
  • Building a roadmap for Colombia to become a carbon neutral country, and
  • Putting culture and creativity at the forefront of the country’s development agenda.

Trailblazers Latinoamericanos facilitates discussion on partnering for sustainability, growth

The conversation with President Duque was the latest in the Trailblazers Latinoamericanos virtual discussion series. Launched in September 2020, the series brings together a wide range of government, business, entrepreneurial and social leaders to learn how stakeholders can work together to accelerate sustainable and inclusive growth in the region.

Topics have included the economy and employment opportunities, collaborative leadership, response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as boosting the leadership of women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). Prior guests have included Luis Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank; Augusto Zampini, and Pamela Scheurer and Alejandra Tamayo, founders of technology companies Nubimetrics and NanoPro.

President Duque shares insight into the future of work

In addition to sharing his reflections on how to promote sustainable and inclusive development of the region, and the role of technology to accelerate the transformation of organizations, President Duque said that to meet the challenges that the 21st century demands, we need to “rethink and re-dimension” how skills are taught.

“We have to adapt to achieve the maximization of human capital. It is very important that the educational system allows children to have intergenerational challenges, to interact generationally, because the world of work is intergenerational,” he explained.

Hearing from trailblazers across the Latin America region, Salesforce has learned that change can be daunting, but the journey does provide opportunities to build better businesses and strengthen our values and shared sense of culture along the way.

To bridge digital skills gaps exacerbated by the pandemic, it is imperative that educators and curriculums keep pace with the evolving requirements of employers. By widening access to online learning platforms, connecting individuals to practical employment opportunities, we can empower the workforce of today and tomorrow to succeed in the digital economy.

Editor’s Note: To enable English subtitles for the video below, click on ‘Settings’ then ‘Subtitles/CC (1)’ After clicking ‘Spanish (auto-generated),’ return to the Subtitles/CC (1) menu, where you can choose ‘Auto-translate.’

Vaccine management is top-of-mind across the globe

With regard to the pandemic and vaccine management, President Duque mentioned that although it was a global triumph that a COVID-19 vaccine was developed in less than a year, “the challenge is getting the vaccine to every country in the world. In this pandemic and the post-pandemic world, no country will make it on their own. It’s no use for one single country to have collective immunity if the rest of the world doesn’t have it.”

Just as technology can help to distribute vaccines in a way that is fair and equitable, it can also help governments and businesses to implement more sustainable and equality-focused work practices. Together, for example, the Colombian government and Salesforce will plant 180 million trees in the country by August 2022. This is part of the global 1 Trillion Trees initiative, a multi-stakeholder effort led by the World Economic Forum to support efforts to grow, restore and conserve 1 trillion trees around the world by 2030.

Business as a platform for change

At Salesforce, we believe business can be the greatest platform for change. As our economies and communities begin to emerge from the pandemic, we need collaborative leadership more than ever. By bringing our trailblazers together through these kinds of discussions, and with a shared ambition to serve others, we can turn aspirations for a better, more equitable future into reality.

You can watch other conversations from the series on the Salesforce LatAm YouTube channel here. The next next episode will take place on March 12, with Charly Alberti, the Argentine musician co-founder of Latin American rock band Soda Stereo and creator of Revolución 21, an organization that promotes sustainable development in the region.


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