Challenges and Opportunities for Collective Problem Solving in Atlanta

Whenever the next challenge or crisis arises in Atlanta—as it is inevitably going to happen—we need to approach the solutions to that problem as another opportunity to collectively come together as a community and do something great to solve that problem for all of the people who call Atlanta home.

By collectively finding solutions, I don’t just mean the various layers of city government coming to the rescue: we must also tap into the resources of the private and non-profit sector. From my perspective, I know Atlanta is better than most big cities in pulling together non-government assets to address community ills, but even we can do better.

It’s that backdrop that was the focus of a recent meeting that I, along with Hala Moddelmog, CEO of Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, attended at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Our guests for the day was a delegation of leaders from around the country brought together by the Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose, or CECP.

CECP was founded in 1999 by actor and philanthropist Paul Newman and other business leaders to create a better world through business. CECP has grown to a movement of more than 200 of the world’s largest companies that represent $6.6 trillion in revenues, $21.2 billion in social investment, 14 million employees, and 23 million hours of employee engagement. CECP’S belief is that a company’s social strategy—how it engages with key community stakeholders, both public and private—determines a company’s success.

Bravo to CECP: I couldn’t agree with them more!

During this day’s visit, I led a group discussion on many of the important issues facing Atlanta today, including systemic inequities in access to STEM learning, economic immobility, housing affordability, modeling hiring opportunities, and other big problems in need of big solutions.

Watch this brief video clip as I walk our guests through the challenges and opportunities for collective problem solving here in Atlanta.