“On a micro and macro level, bad leadership gives birth to two individuals; imitators or dissenters. Both with a deeply seated weariness of leadership (good or bad), both unable to trust themselves or endure the reformative abilities of good leadership.”
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want to be done because he wants to do it.” Dwight D. Eisenhower
An effective leader should aim to achieve the following:
1.Visualize the future i.e. have an inspiring vision of the future.
2.Communicate and inspire people to engage with his/her vision.
3.Strategize/structure the delivery of the vision.
4.Motivate and build a team, that can achieve the vision.
2017 was an entertaining year, a year for re-defining leadership. Political, religious, business and cultural leaders were questioned, challenged on different platforms. Some leaders fell beneath the bar, while others excelled. However, I found their response to scrutiny more interesting than their actual performance, equally entertaining was the public reaction to these responses.
From the oval office to its North Korean equivalent, a better demonstration of tyrannical, unstable leadership cannot be found. In the past, tweets from the oval office were anticipated for a profound understanding of societies ills. Presently, however, they are anticipated for a horrendous display of insensitivity to global issues and at best for satirical humor and comic relief. On the other hand we wake up each day dreading to discover an entire country has been decimated by a leader whose ego supersedes his office. Here I was thinking, wonderful things come in small sizes.
While citizens governed by the oval office are divided into three camps; those disappointed by the lack of basic leadership etiquette, those who celebrate it as they had no faith in past leadership modules and those disillusioned by any form of leadership. A different populace exists across the globe in North Korea, citizens restricted from expressing their displeasure for a fear of bodily harm. Both leaders have received cautions and sanctions from the united nations, it’s populace, neighbours, friends and enemies alike, but, all to little or no avail. When we scream for change what do we mean? A departure from the norm, a drastic departure from altruistic leadership? Change on a one-way lane powered by a one size ego, headed to fulfil a single dimension fantasy. Is that what we mean?
Going back a few years to 2015, we cried for change in Nigeria, moving forward to 2017 one cannot help wondering if we got short-changed. The year saw Aso rock riddled with bio-hazards, long periods of sick leave, blatant disregard for certain regions in the country and projection of another regions agenda. Despite public outcry on several platforms decrying the poor state of leadership, the incumbent leader seeks to project himself for leadership in 2019. Is this the change we sort? Change which produced four members of parliament earning post-humus income; if we earn a living what are they earning? A dying?
Religious leaders weren’t spared, people challenged the need for tithes and general giving to the church. Tithe and offerings of some form has been a part of most religious bodies, a way of sustaining their physical edifice and structural representative. However, this act of giving has been abused with some leaders making demands on members regardless of their economic status or wellbeing. Others disburse of said funds without proper transparency or accountability.
Equally disturbing is the seeming indifference of these leaders to societies ills especially when opportune to speak up or make impact. The lifestyle and speech of some of these leaders often contrasts with the teachings of contentment found in the scriptures. Thus, I am not surprised by those who view the church as a fraudulent business run by expert con men. With many of them demanding a review and change to the status of the church. What change I ask? That members stop giving? That ministers live in penury? Should we re-evaluate the principles of giving? Where does faith come in?
From the streets of Hollywood to the doors of Sub Sahara Africa, women made their opinions known. A male dominated world wasn’t the way forward anymore, it wasn’t enough to set the table, it wasn’t enough to sit at the table, women want the right to; restructure the table, populate the table, or simply change the entire setting. Feminism was redefined, sexual harassment was re-evaluated and the merits of marriage scrutinized. Once again the echo of change reverberated through the world, should we be weary of every man? Are all women innocent? If we are equals why are men still largely expected to propose? Why do we silently expect women to back down when an impasse occurs in relationships. Why not stick to merits? Why not take gender off the table?
When we cry for change we must consider the impact of such movements on the future. We must consider the goals of those against us but most importantly we must consider those who are with us, else we wake up to find the prize stolen by another. Must we pull down the entire system, isn’t there something to salvage? Perhaps more importantly we should give our best to understand the system, walking in the shoes of those held by the system before attempting to reform the system, lest we become armchair critics. People who speak for change but do not work for change, either have nothing to lose or have a lot to gain indirectly.
What change do you want?