Over the centuries, the course of history has been shaped by individuals who dared to believe that they could make a difference.
They understood the power of one… they recognised that one person with a passion to be a V.I.P can be the catalyst for transformation.
By V.I.P, we are not talking about an unhealthy desire to be seen by other people as a very important person. Instead, we are talking about choosing to be one person with a strong Vision, noble heart of Integrity and an unyielding dedication to Productivity. Such a person can make a huge difference in the family, institution, community or nation… that person could well be YOU!
Cultivating those three key attributes will serve to unleash the greatness that lies within you and propel you from wherever you are today into the leader you were born to be.
So, let us briefly explore these attributes:
Vision – every human arrived on the planet with a destiny to accomplish, a mission to fulfil, to the betterment of humanity… That mission, deposited within you by our Creator, is called your Purpose!
Whether you choose to accept and nurture or deny and abuse that purpose is up to you. Your purpose is hidden within you and it is discerned by understanding the problem you were born to solve through your abilities, giftings, sorrows, passion, strengths and journey of life.
Too many people never take the time to discover their purpose hence live lives of desperation and unfulfillment. When you take the time to discover your purpose, nurture it and most importantly, document it, that becomes your vision.
The people who make a positive difference to our world are people who have chosen to accept the responsibility for discerning, pursuing and fulfilling the worthy vision in their heart… that could well be YOU!
Integrity – this is the foundation of a truly worthwhile contribution to humanity. You may have uncommon intellectual capability, exceptional physical skill or extraordinary spiritual capacity… if you lack integrity or sound character, all of those abilities are simply putting you on a fast track to destruction. You and I know of people in our nation who had all those abilities, yet because of their poor character, their success was prematurely terminated.
I have found that many people complain of corruption in our nation and want our community or national leaders to be people of integrity and excellent character… yet are prepared to bend the rules to achieve what they want in their own lives… for example, a student knows that they did not achieve the required scores to qualify for entry into their desired university course, yet they would ask their parents, uncles or other influential person to help them get in via “connections.”
It is arrant hypocrisy to ask your council chairman, lecturer, senator, pastor, governor, president or other leader to be a person of integrity if you are not prepared to be the same. The principle of integrity is this… you have no right to demand of others that which you are unwilling to demand of yourself.
I have three questions for you… when you reflect honestly on your thoughts, words or actions in the last six months, on a scale of one to ten, how would you rate yourself on a personal integrity index? What are the areas in which you need to improve? What will you do to improve?
Always remember that your potential for greatness will be supercharged by the power of sound character and unimpeachable integrity.
Productivity – Mere words, whilst powerful are not enough by themselves to bring lasting change. They must be accompanied by productive, focussed action. Choose to be someone who not only sees or talks about what needs to be done, but is also committed to engaging in the activity that brings about the desired transformation. Government is not the solution to every problem… YOU can make a difference!
As a member of the Man O’ War Club in my university days, part of our commitment included going into local communities to build something beneficial to them such as a small bridge. Although, it was a small bridge, it made a big difference in the lives of the people as it significantly shortened their journeys to fetch water, reach their farms or market and lead more productive lives.
Similarly, think about this… could you mobilise a few of your friends during your holidays to go into a local community and help them with a beneficial project?
I am confident that youth have a fantastic contribution to make to the nation, but it’s not only in aspiring to positions of political influence or similar authority. If you and some friends came together to do just one beneficial thing for your local community, you will be surprised how powerfully you could positively impact that community.
Choose the pathway of purpose-driven productivity, knowing that every seed of time and effort you sow into the lives of others is guaranteed a harvest.
You carry within you the unique potential to be a catalyst for hope and transformation in your environment. As you embrace the workings of the three core attributes of Vision, Integrity and Productivity, be assured that your life will demonstrate the simple truth that you were born to lead… therein lies the power of one!
Known as The Leadership Catalyst, Yemi Akinsiwaju carries an unceasing passion to inspire people to discover and release their own leadership greatness.
He is the author of three highly acclaimed books including The Leadership Jigsaw, lauded by global leaders as a “MUST READ to turn leadership crises into leadership abundance.”
You can reach him via YemiAkinsiwaju.com
Note: This article first appeared in the offline publication, “Plato Tribune” released in Akure, Nigeria.