Carlos Ghosn: 2008 JAUS Dinner Event in New York Part 5

Uploaded by avproduce on 09.04.2010

Mr. Ghosn, Michel Issa, I am a New York resident for the last 20 years. I appreciate your words
tonight to tell us about your experience in the world and corporate. The purpose of our
meeting tonight is student in Lebanon and students who are trying to make it and students
who are trying to struggle with what they have in Lebanon and based on my experience,
we always looked up to famous Lebanese that make it in the world, became successful, and
became the people of the world. I’m hoping also as well that this evening may be broadcast
in Lebanon and Notre Dame de Jamhour so if that is the case, is their any message, personally
that you would like to tell the students that we are trying to maybe promote or help to
be the students of the future. Is there any personal message that you would like to tell
them maybe they would listen to you and I would like to hear it.
Carlos : Well you know if there is one message to say is that, you know, during your years
of education, and that’s probably something which Jamhour is very strong at it; you develop
values. I mean, your own values, what’s wrong, what’s right, what deserves your
efforts, what doesn’t deserve your effort, and we all, a lot of us are coming out of
Jamhour, we don’t have the same values but we have been influenced in a certain way.
You know, these values are very important and because your going to find yourself at
a certain point in time in your life where your only guides, your only guide are your
values; there will be no other guides. So if you have no values, you don’t know what
to choose. If you are facing a tragedy and you have no values, you have no reference
so spending time developing values is something absolutely important. If I want to give a
message to the young people, education is not only about knowledge, education is also
about building a system of values because this system of values is going to be your
reference for life. It’s going to develop, it’s going to mature, it’s going to change
but if you don’t have it, knowledge is worthless you know, knowledge is worthless. SO, the
only message I would say is spend time developing your values, spend time discussing your values,
because often when you’re going to be in the battles of life, you know you will not
have so much time to think about it but they’re going to be your main reference, you know
you have your own values, I have my own values. That means between the values I have developed,
you know family values, college values etc… there are certain things which are very dear
to me that always were my priority, always were my priority dependently if I was in Japan,
United States, working for Renault, Nissan etc… always were my priority and I can tell
you Carlos: This was very helpful. When you have a hectic life and you are changing environment
all the time, and you are going the ups and downs, having a system, which is guiding you
where you have always your reference, is something very important. So that would be my advice
for the young people: knowledge is good, Values “is” better.
Q: M. Ghosn, I’m Munir Ghesani, a friend of Gaby’s and worked with him for a long
time You mentioned about the importance of diversity, importance of common vision, and
the breaking the taboos in Japan, but then comes a point of implementation in motivating
the staff, and maintaining that motivation. When it came to practicality, how did you
manage to keep that motivation and that enthusiasm going? Was it by regular emails? By making
speeches to them? Continuously motivating them to the common goal. I want to know about
the practicality of it. Carlos: Well you know, I think the main element
of motivation comes from the fact that the solidarity that exists and the fact that no
matter if you are a leader, or a manager or you’re a team member, we are all in the
same pot. When people start to think that the leader is out of the game or the manager
is out of the game or he is not going to be hurt as much the team players if the team
looses etc…then you destroy motivation. The most important element of motivation is
existence of vision. First, what is the project? And second we are all in it in the same way.
That is absolutely fundamental. So usually, when you are in a turn around situation, motivation
is very easy, why? Because it’s obvious; there is a clear project Turn Around, everybody
is in it because usually the leadership commits to say “You know if am not successful I
am out” So people are relieved by saying that he shares the same kind of faith than
us. So it’s very easy in a turn around situation. It’s much more difficult to have motivation
when things are smooth and when the stakes are not dramatic and when its not 0 or 1,
loose or win, when you are in between. But systematically, motivation is based on common
project, common vision, solidarity and no matter what is your responsibility in the
organization you all share the same faith. Q: M. Ghosn, my name is Patrice Hassoun, we
are very honored to have you here tonight, and I have a question which is a very basic
question. We are gathered here because most of our school helped us tremendously in the
60s and 70s and made us all of us here very successful outside the country whereas inside
the country we have basically “remaining mediocrity” so what should be really the
focus of the school. Do you think that the school should focus in a different direction
to face the challenge of the 21st Century? Carlos: I think Pere Dakash is doing a great
job into steering the school into the right direction, I don’t think there are a lot
of areas where I would dare give him any suggestions. The only thing, and I think it’s a weakness
form my part I’m sure, that I suggest is to say, probably in the college we should
create an English section.
But for the rest I think the college is doing great; humanity, science, mathematics, teaching
the level of excellence, creating competition, creating the discipline, there are still good
values for the century. The only thing is that we need to help a little bit more the
students to open up to one part of the world and maybe in a few years not only an English
section but maybe a Chinese section or a Japanese section. We’re going to have to create a
little bit. But for the rest, I personally think the college is doing a great job.
Q: Several weeks ago M. Joe Audi was kind enough and gracious to invite us all to listen
to M. Taleb, the gentleman who is also Lebanese and wrote the book the Black Swan. And unfortunately,
and good for him, everything he said to us that evening is taking place. And we have
seen from Mr. Taleb Black Swan book and his lecture that evening, everything that he has
told us is unfolding in front of our eyes in the economical world and we are really
all very concerned obviously. I just want to get your feeling or your point of view
as to where we are heading next in this uncharted water if you can just briefly give us your
opinion. Thank You