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Developing the next generation of leaders

Choosing a career is a daunting task, but a sneak preview into the future and a little bit of motivation is what learners require to steer them in the right direction of achieving their long- term goals and overcoming their anxiety of an uncertain future.

This became apparent when a group of 30 high school learners expressed their desire and eagerness to learn how to become better leaders. The learners, aged between 13 and 19 from General Smuts High School in Vereeniging, visited the VUT Science and Technology Park from 27 to 29 June for a leadership summit.

The three-day Leadership Development Summit was facilitated by the Bokamoso Leadership Programme and hosted by the Paul Tsolo Teaching and Training Organisation. The aim of the programme is to develop the next generation of South African leaders by exposing them to current great leaders who offer guidance and advice on the necessary knowledge and skills required for the role.

They were encouraged not to become job seekers, but rather to excel as entrepreneurs who can become job creators.

Enabling Enduring Success

The keynote address was delivered by leadership practitioner Buyani Zwane; CEO of Breakthrough Development and Director of Dynamic Leadership Solutions. He is a master trainer and had the privilege of working with the world-renowned educator, author, businessman and keynote speaker Stephen Covey. He spoke of becoming the model of excellence. He emphasised that failure is not an option, but pursuit of excellence is building leadership with a strong backbone; not a wishbone.

Destined for greatness

Dr Joe Molete, the Executive Director of the VUT Science and Technology Park, is also a motivational speaker, coach and facilitator. His presentation was entitled: Innovation.

He explained that as a leader it is important to set realistic goals that will lead to your vision and how to partner, collaborate, guide and mentor to ensure that your goals become a reality. He said that while innovation is vast and diverse, it begins with three basic spheres: innovating self, innovating your organisation and innovating your product.

The core to innovation is the intention to make a profit whilst making an impact on your community. Because of the rapid change of the world economics, policies and governments, it is imperative to get with the times to develop and keep up with innovation.

South Africans are facing a bleak and uncertain economic future with the fluctuating exchange rates peaking at all-time highs and every household is affected in one or more ways. Thus, the new generation of vibrant youth are urged to change and do things better to improve the lives of people through innovation.

The world can benefit from new developments, but youngsters have to be offered the right platform, tools and the know-how in order to do so.

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