Posted on 07 December 2011.
May I just go ahead and be unashamedly honest? I have not been so intimidated by a book in a very long while. As I paged through this behemoth of a book my mind knotted with every diagram I saw and the bile in my stomach released thick bubbles as I carefully read the intimidating headings that stand guard at the gates of every chapter. What were they thinking when they asked me to review this book? I like to think that kneaded into that mysterious answer is a very sweet compliment. The version doing the rounds in my mind is that they took a look at all the intelligence, deep and intricate thought and naturally my name came to mind. Hey, play nice. Don’t laugh at my theory.
The author has spent more time in the bowels of the academia than I have been alive. Dr. Khoza’s qualifications include a BA Hons in Psychology, MA in Marketing, EngD (Business Leadership) and LLD (Honoris Clausa). He is Emiratus Professor Extraordinaire of the University of Stellenbosch Business School and Visiting Professor of Rhodes Investec Business School. Basically, what this all means is that he may know a thing or two about leadership.
Attuned Leadership by Reuel J Khoza is a doozy of a book. It is both heavy in weight and heavy in content. To put it very simply, it is a study of Leadership. What is it? What makes a good leader? What shapes them? History? Culture? Politics? Religion? All these options, and then some, are explored exhaustively. The aim is to figure out how one becomes not just a leader, but an ‘Attuned Leader.’ There are a plethora of leaders out there, but 99% percent of them are not attuned to that which they are attempting to lead or where they are trying to go. Many of them are making due with only a tattered understanding of that which they claim to be doing.
My thesaurus lists the following words as synonyms for attuned: accustom, adjust, adapt, acclimatize, condition, accommodate, assimilate and acclimate. If I understand Dr. Khoza correctly (it is very possible that the point he was trying to make flew way over my head) successful leaders pay attention. They pay close attention to the people they are leading, where they want to lead these people to, what they are leading the people out off, the potholes on the road ahead and the diamond encrusted wisdom embedded in the footsteps left by the leaders who walked this steep road ahead of them.
It’s no secret that Africa – scrap that – the entire continent is suffering from an Attuned Leadership drought. When the sweet rain of good leadership does not rain, the treasured crops of our dreams will not grow and our future will succumb to the famine of knowledge and die a slow death as a fly-infested baby.
I make light of receiving this book, but fact is I’m glad for its entry in my life. I’ll be pilfering quotes from this one for decades to come. It should be compulsory reading for everybody – especially folks in youth leagues (hint hint). They should make microchips of it and implant it into the heads of all newborn babies. The world’s future might actually stand a chance then.
- Keitumetse Segoai
Posted in Lifestyle
Posted on 02 November 2011.
Unfortunately in life there are only two groups of people. It’s either you are a leader or a follower. An entrepreneur or an employee. You either choose to sell or be sold to. Produce or consume. This phenomenon is synonymous throughout society and we are inherently making these decisions daily as we make our paces through the journey that we call life. There is nothing wrong with being on either side of the fence but it pretty much determines where you are going to end up as far as financial freedom is concerned. Being a leader, trendsetter, entrepreneur, producer or seller is the difficult side of things because it involves convincing or getting buy in from other people; it means most of the time you are thinking outside the box about what the rest of society does not normally think about. You are constantly exercising your imagination to the “possibilities” of things that have not been thought of before, and usually you are faced with a lot of resistance to change. But, as with every great risk, there is a greater reward; so it’s either you choose the easy way or the hard way, but whichever way you go, the rewards are reciprocated. It’s in all of us to choose mediocrity or to be exceptional.
- By Wilbert Chaniwa
Posted in Kasi Diaries
Posted on 26 October 2011.
If one takes into account all the talk and noise from our leaders, it’s understandable for one to be convinced, depending which side you’re on, that we’re at the dawn of a time of delivery. It is worth noting that the expectations we have are justified but as the same time they require one to be reasonable. It’s becoming clearer that in this system we live in that one has to think differently and shift his or her source of expectation. It requires one to have an enquiring or educated mind that can clearly distinguish between what’s been said and what’s been done, and what needs to be said and what you need to do.
It’s important that we move away and cleanse ourselves from a system or culture that holds us back – the culture of entitlement. We need to understand that politicians will say what they need to say to achieve their desired outcomes and as much as we cannot totally dismiss their mission and vision but we need to know what is it we can do on our own within that vision to achieve our dreams and change our lives for the better.
The New Growth Path says it must provide bold, imaginative and effective strategies to create the millions of new jobs South Africa needs. Whether the NGP will achieve its objective remains to be seen but we, the young people, cannot wait for the NGP or President Zuma to save us. We must welcome their intervention and their efforts but they should meet us halfway. We look forward to a time when our economic system will finally be able to deliver jobs and sufficiently fight the scourge of poverty but we can no longer sit and mourn. It’s time we roll our sleeves.
Thomas Jefferson once said “every new generation needs a new revolution.” It is evident that our revolution won’t be on the streets, but within. It’s a revolution that requires us to shun ignorance and to be the seekers of knowledge and understanding… to embrace curiosity, chase inspiration and be obsessed with ideas.
Our qualifications alone don’t seem to be delivering us and maybe the world or employers are looking for something extra. It calls for us to be an educated generation way beyond class room; a confident, creative and passionate generation. It is said that a tree does not move unless there’s wind. Maybe our wind is too weak and needs a little push. We are not and can never be a lazy generation, and we need to show that through our actions and behaviour.
I propose four steps we can take right now Read the full story
Posted in Kasi Diaries
Posted on 22 August 2010.
The Business Leadership Forum (BLF), which consists of business people from various professions, is a vibrant, growing forum of business networking professionals in Soweto. They believe in business-to-business networking and aim at building sustainable long-term relationships with each other. Read the full story
Posted in Zikhiphani