Mrs Ibukun Awosika, former Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria, says visionary leadership entails taking responsibility to lead right and develop other peoples’ capabilities for the interest of the family, community and nation.
Awosika spoke at the Akin Adeosun Foundation (AAF)’s 2021 Leadership Colloquium and Awards- Chapter 6 at Lagos, an event which also marked the 53rd Birthday of Mr Akinjide Adeosun, Founder of AAF.
The AAF is a non-profit organisation set up t0 leave a leadership legacy in Africa by strengthening capabilities in today’s leaders and build a pipeline of ready future leaders by 2035.
Awosika, who joined virtually, said: “Visionary leadership is responsibility. It is taking the commitment for the longest term in the interest of a nation and institution, the community and people.
“ It is leadership that is beyond self. It is leadership that does not just think about today but makes sacrifices for today so that tomorrow and the day after can be better.
“It is leadership that is able to mobilise, drawing from all the strengths and qualities; it is leadership that understand the limitations of the individuals, understands the power of maximizing the strengths of all the powers’’.
According to her, leadership is taking that responsibility with clarity of vision and roles and communicating same to all the citizens of the nation.
This, she said, makes the citizens stakeholders as they understand the benefits, their own roles and what is required of them to achieve that goal.
Awosika emphasised that a nation is built from the family unit, the community unit, at state level unto the Federal level.
She tasked citizens on a major mindset shift whereby they would imbibe a mindset of self leadership that is based on the individuals and community.
“Each one of us has a common commitment to building a nation that we desire and understanding our responsibility as leaders of our nation.
“It is that self leadership, community leadership that is needed to sustain our commitment to building a better nation.
“It starts with us. Each one of us could own that sense of visionary leadership and apply it from our homes as we nurture every one under our care,’’ she said.
Mr Akinjide ADEOSUN, Chairman, AAF, said that a visionary leader is an individual who sees the potential of how the world should exist and then takes steps to get there.
“The ability to see the potential for change combined with the ability to lead others create a visionary leader.
“Visionary Leaders are born or created to build nations thereby establishing greatness leading to prosperity.
“We can no longer keep quiet in our comfort zone without contributing our talents, resources to helping our country to greatness.
“We shall proffer actionable solutions thereby contributing into the restoration of greatness of Nigeria.’’
Giving ways to achieve this, he said it would include the gathering of great people to tell their stories thereby impacting positively into the present generation.
Speaking on the impact of AAF after six years, he said that progress had been made in the twin objectives of strengthening the five leadership capability of today’s leaders and building a pipeline of future leaders.
“Over the past six years, we have contributed to building a strong today for a stronger tomorrow.
“We have invested monetary, material & human resources in positively changing the leadership paradigm positively.
“I believe leaders must go through a preparatory process to equip them for the task of nation building. That is exactly what we are doing at the Akinjide Adeosun Foundation (AAF).
“Every year, each cohort of Meadow Hall College students undergo leadership training encompassing leadership values, leadership case studies on excellence, integrity, empathy, Godliness and transformation,’’ he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that other speakers at the event included Mr Simon Kolawole, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Cable Newspaper Limited, who spoke on “The Enabler of National Development’’.
Also, Mr Ashepeoluwa Oyedepo, a young AAF mentee, spoke on “Our Expectations’’.
The AAF 2021 Visionary Leadership Award was given to Dr Kehinde Nwani and Chief Innocent Chukwuma.
Nwani is the GMD/CEO of Meadow Hall Group. She is a social entrepreneur with passion for national transformation and believes that education can be used as a viable tool for societal development.
Chukwuma, is the Founder and CEO of Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing, Nigeria’s first indigenous automobile manufacturing company. He bagged the AAF 2021 Visionary Leadership Award for his visionary and pioneering stance in business sector. (NAN)