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PUT LIBERIA FIRST

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Recent happenings on alleged corruption involving the House and NOCAL, the death of the whistle blower and the decision made as it relates to the re-opening of schools continue to send signals that there is indeed a problem of leadership in this country.

What is going on? What do our leaders stand for as it has to do with the running of this country? Do they consider their character, the people, and do they mean business in transforming this country?

A Lesson in Leadership
Nothing in life could be more frustrating than trying to keep up a reputation that is directly opposite of your character. Reputation might achieve some amount of success for you as a leader, but character is what sustains it. No matter what you get by reputation, you can easily lose it for lack of character.

No matter how hard you try, pretend or try to impress people by your reputation, your character which is who you truly are will someday be seen. Character is the strength of leadership; character is the expression of your inner being. Without character success might be a difficult thing to achieve or maintain. Know that good character is the essence of leadership.

True leadership is knowing that you could never fool all the people all the time and so being in a position of leadership requires character. People learn to trust leaders whose words correspond with their character, deeds and action for leadership is all about trust and this of course most leaders forget.

Betraying the trust of your people is the worst thing you could ever do as a leader.  To lead by example should be your priority as a leader. Say what you mean, mean what you say and do it exactly when and how you said you will do it. This in essence is integrity.

Reputation may win sometimes but character wins all the time. Therefore, if you desire true success and accomplishment as a leader pay attention to your character. “When you pay attention to your character you will have less secrets and explanations to people about yourself.

Nothing distinguishes you more than good character worthy of emulation. This is the foundation of leadership, the kind of leadership we have been looking for in this country. Liberians need to someday boast of leaders with characters worthy of emulation – leaders who will stand for the truth and do what is right no matter the opposition – leaders willing to sacrifice their comfort for this country. Men and women who will not only make laws but obey the laws they have made.

Men and women of character that will serve fearlessly and selflessly without bothering about their reputation but stand on the path of justice and make the right decisions that many generations to come will be proud of.

On the re-opening of schools you need to be sensitive to the needs and feelings of the people. You need to build a reservoir of good will by placing the interest of the people above your own and must accentuate the good decisions and find a way to reshape the bad. This in essence is the challenge of effective leadership.

Listening shows that the leader has humility. It demonstrates that he or she is not at distance or too busy or too self-opinionated to spend time listening to another idea or opinion. Listening to others on a first-hand level will enable you to take corrective action early. Successful leaders have the courage to take action where others hesitate.

Your decision will always be better if you do what is right for your people, not what is right for yourself, and as much as possible, keep the people in the decision making process.

Do not make unpopular decisions and seek to implement them. To do so will be setting a bad leadership example. Do not lead your people with a whip but give them a dream and help them reach their potentials. DO NOT give a wrong picture to your people that indeed you are hiding something.  Understand that confident, trusting leadership is a way of life.

Ask for ideas, input, and thoughts before important actions are taken. Involvement leads to commitment. This is where I believe your decision on the re-opening of schools seemed to be hasty and I concur with Senator Coleman and others that “you are putting the lives of students at risk.”

It is glaring that GoL is unprepared because rightful measures that need to be put in place as required by the WHO are not. So why are you in a hurry?  Understand this – “transforming this country has nothing to do with the size of your position but by your willingness to do what is right every time you have the opportunity.”

(Chealy Brown Dennis is a consultant and a much sought after motivational speaker and offers training in leadership and business development concept and planning, creative sales and marketing, strategic planning and team building. He can be contacted through email at: dennisbc2011@yahoo.com or on phone at: 0886-264-611 or 0776545394)