Chairman Of UBA Group, Tony Elumelu Shares Leadership Skills With His Staff Around The World From Lagos
Thursday, August 17th, 2017 will surely be a day to remember for some members of staff of United Bank for Africa and Heirs Holdings as their Chairman, Mr Tony Elumelu shared some key leadership skills. Elumelu, one of Nigeria’s foremost entrepreneur and philanthropist walked his staff through the start of his career till the moment he stood before them.
BlackBox Nigeria gathered that the lecture which was held at the UBA House, Marina, Lagos was streamed live to staff across nineteen countries in Africa, New York, London and Paris.
Mr Elumelu who was proud to share nuggets about his leadership journey stated that the Thursday experience was a rare one as he discussed with his work family; his employees.
See below for his highlighted tips..
First of all, know that everyone is a leader and that leadership is a journey which occurs at every level. I mentioned that I started my career selling photocopy machines. I learned something key from this and that is that you must know your product in order to be able to sell it. We used to take the machines apart and put them back together and so we knew them inside out and of course that translated into our sales success. This applies to every job, you must be knowledgeable about your product so you can sell it properly. No knowledge gained is lost.
Secondly, things are only impossible if you believe them to be so. Impossibility must never originate with you, always have an open mind, be relentless and apply energy & tenacity and I can assure you that you are more than likely to succeed. When I applied to my first banking job after university, I was not qualified. But in my cover letter I wrote that if I was given the opportunity, I would do well. The rest is history. At a time as a branch manager at AllStates Bank, my performance was better than the next 34 branches combined. There’s also a lesson here for leaders – don’t be too detached. If my application wasn’t reviewed, I would not have got that job.
Thirdly, with great responsibility must also come great humility. Leadership means that you are first among equals so you must not lord it over others. You must be humble to succeed. Good leaders listen and if you want to be an even better leader you must listen even more. As a leader, you must protect the corporate above yourself.
Separate personal and official issues. No one should gain what they are not entitled to because they are close to you but at the same time no one should also lose out on what they are entitled to because they are close to you. Sycophancy kills institution.
Surround yourself with great people and create a friendly work environment. The people I work with are my friends and this has always been so. People give their best to bosses that they like. Motivate them by setting gials, assessing them and rewarding them appropriately and disciplining them where necessary.
Lastly, do not jettison things that have helped you succeed in life and in business. Add to them as you gain more experiences.
Photo Credits: UBA Group.