Allow me to first address the outgoing leadership team led by outgoing president Joy.
A time like now last year, you were challenge to lead Rotary Club of Ngong (RCN). You have led them well. I know for a fact that you have left your mark.
We appreciate you.
We thank you
The sun has set on you- take you your place on the advisory council.
My observation is that the majority of immediate past presidents have the following characteristics;
> Critical of their successor
Be in the 20% that support their successors-The reward may not seem to be there but it is phenomenal!
Remember the success of a leader will be judged by their succession. Your support to the incoming team is critical to your legacy!
May I ask that the outgoing team stands for a final recognition?
Allow me to come to the highlight of this afternoon- the induction/installation of a new team led by President Njunge.
Mr. President, this afternoon marks the sunrise of your leadership
At this time it is full of promise; full of hope
Allow me to use the analogy of a great meal like we have in this hotel
Mr. President, you are the Executive Chef
Your Vice President is the deputy Chef
Your President Elect is the Sous Chef
Your Secretary is the Head Cook
Your Treasurer is head of your kitchen stores
Your board members are section heads.
Like Jesus, these are your disciples to preach the Gospel of “Rotary Making a Difference” to Jerusalem, Judea, and the world!
I would like to now fast forward you President and your team to an event like today in June 2018 and look at what your scoreboard is likely to look like;
- Who grew/became better because of your leadership? Leadership is not a personal agenda. A great leader while building his name takes with him his constituents. This will call for the humility to know that it is not about you! It is about stepping back for others to step up! Humility has been conclusively agreed as the single most outstanding quality of any leadership!
- What higher purpose did you call your members to? Weekly meetings will not achieve much. Volunteers must see a higher purpose than just meeting. If you can truly demonstrate to the members a higher purpose, they will give you their money, their sweat and if need be their blood! Man’s greatest need is transcendence- a life bigger, longer, than their physical lives. Let everyone in the club see the opportunity to transcend!
- How did you respond to setbacks and difficulties? I have watched many rotary presidents/leaders destroy a life-time worth of good work because they gave up when faced with difficulty! I promise you President that like Moses in the Bible, you will leading an obstinate and hard-headed people who are likely to tell you that life was better in bondage in Egypt than your promised land! When, and I repeat when not if, you come to this point remember tonight I said to you- press on!
- What desirable change did you bring to your Rotary? If your leadership will take us only as far your predecessor and his group brought us, then we have no business changing leaders. Leadership is about positive change. Begin to think through with your team what it is we will remember you for? Perhaps take time out in July/August and spend a few hours defining this. The club will look to you to point the way.
- How much unity of head, hand and heart did your members see in you? Avoid duplicity- nothing is more abhorrent to your followers than you not walking the talk! Many times we fool ourselves that we can act the part but your constituents can touch you/feel you! Adolf Hitler was brilliant and great leader with a great mind and great hands but lacked the heart. Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa and Martin Luther are great examples of leaders who had unity of head, hand and heart. The measure of your legacy will correlate directly with this unity!
As I close, I appeal to you to listen to your members with intent to learn. Encourage debate and constructive dissent. There is no substitute for a great team. You saw what your predecessor and her team achieved this year. You are the cheerleader in the team and others will play many roles to bring a great achievement. Copy shamelessly what worked previously and discard diplomatically what did not work!
Leadership is not command and control.
Leadership is influence. It can be learnt, practiced and perfected.
Go ye and lead!