" ITREALMS: Education, Youth Development, Skills and Quality Leadership: Building A Pathway for Better Nigeria - ITREALMS

Saturday, July 23, 2022

Education, Youth Development, Skills and Quality Leadership: Building A Pathway for Better Nigeria - ITREALMS

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Being text of address delivered by Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, President and Founder of Royal FM 95.1Mhz Ilorin at the 5th Students Union leadership Summit of Kwara State University, Molete on Wednesday 20th July 2022

Pix First Right S U President Mr. Danshitta Prof. M.M.Jimba Dean Students Affairs KWASU

I thank the organizers of this event for inviting me to share some knowledge about of today’s topic and I hope I would be able to leave you with some lessons of from experience as an entrepreneur and in Investor in people.

Brief about what I do: I train as a Telecommunications Engineer and I practice telecommunication, I am the Chief Executive Officers of Communication Network Support Services (CNSSL) a leading telecommunications network building and maintenance company in Nigeria, we have built over 50,000kilometers of terrestrial fibre optics cable network cross Nigeria, and currently maintain a large part of that network.

We have developed well over 500 mobile telephone call sites across the country, We construct and built telecom mast and towers and we currently maintain terrestrial infrastructure across Nigeria and up to Niger and Niger Republic.

We have interest on broadcasting and currently own five Radio Stations across Nigeria and the United Kingdom. We own a full television services and are currently in the process of commencing terrestrial broadcasting as we have been awarded a digital television license in Ilorin Kwara State.

My other areas of interest include Agriculture, Hospitality, Supermarket retailing, food and beverage, Hospitals, Medical and health and Electronic Waste Management and recycling.

(Refer to company Tree)

1. Who is a Leader?

Let me start my address by raising a question on leaders: Are leaders Made or Born?

The questions of weather outstanding leaders are born or made has been debated for many years. There are numerous examples of historical figures that came naturally to leadership by inheritance or assignment, while others developed their leadership skills through tenacity and experience. To understand leadership, both nature (the genetic component) and Nurturing (the environmental influences) need to be considered.

According to R. M. Stogdill’s Handbook of Leadership, “There are almost as many different definitions of leadership as there are persons who have attempted to define the concept.” Meaning leadership can be by the definition of who is defining it.

While there is no standard definition of leader, there are many different kinds of leadership that exist in today’s environment.

Theories suggest that leadership traits are intrinsic, meaning that great leaders are born and will emerge when confronted with the appropriate situation. Such natural leaders possess certain qualities and talents, such as:

- Honesty

- Moral,

- Vision

- Compassion and care that make them well suited for leadership.

We as entrepreneurs invest time and money to help employees develop leadership skills based on the assumption that leaders can be trained. This suggests that leadership itself is a skill that may be learned (i.e., extrinsically fostered).

The big Question: are the foundations of outstanding leadership intrinsic (i.e., leaders are born) or extrinsic (i.e., leaders are made)?

Warren Bennis, author of the book On Becoming a Leader, identifies several characteristics that leaders share: such as: a guiding vision, passion that provides hope and inspires others, integrity (which encompasses condor, maturity and self-knowledge), curiosity, and the willingness to take risks.

These are not traits that individuals are born with and cannot change, but rather traits that are developed as a result of life experiences.

Leaders embrace opportunities, engage in skill development, and respond to a set of external circumstances.

Innate traits are needed in order to develop into an outstanding leader when life experiences and circumstances present themselves. Studies have concluded that training, hard work, and experiences result in the development of outstanding leaders.

Whether an evidence-based endeavour or a financial opportunity, the leadership industry exceeds $14 billion annually and is purportedly committed to making leaders.

In this regard, I would say, leaders most likely arise from a combination of genetic predisposition as well as training and development.

2. Principles of Leadership

2.1 Guiding Vision,

You need to have a vision and your vision is your most important dream or mental picture. It can also be a set of dreams and long-term goals. A vision defines the optimal desired future state; it tells of what you would like to achieve over a longer time.

2.2 Integrity

Integrity is an important part of leadership;

Integrity is aligning your conduct with what you know to be right and just in your own personal assessment in relations to your principles.

A person of integrity displays a principled and dedication to values and beliefs. They always seek to reflect ethical standards and do the right thing regardless of the circumstances.

2.2.1 Attributes of Integrity

The convictions of a person of integrity determine what they will say and do at any given time. They intentionally direct their conduct according to their understanding of what is right and wrong. Authenticity marks the heart of integrity. Their internal character remains consistent regardless of external conditions.

Integrity includes the quality of being honest, but honesty does not always demonstrate integrity. The difference is the inner commitment to being trustworthy and communicating the truth without deception. A person of integrity lives without duplicity and hypocrisy.

A person of integrity does not claim to be perfect. Instead, they are quick to acknowledge their own mistakes and faults. Their sincerity comes from a pure motivation to do what is right even when it might be inconvenient. Times of crisis particularly test a person’s integrity. What would it take for you to compromise your resolve to do what you believe is right?

2.2.2 Why Is Integrity Important in leadership?

Acting with integrity gives you peace of mind in knowing you did the right thing regardless of the outcome.

By committing to live based on excellent principles, you provide an example for others to follow. You also have a basis for open communication with others because they trust you. Your relationships can prosper based on honesty and forthrightness.

Personal integrity gives you peace of mind in knowing you did the right thing regardless of the outcome.

2.3. Accountability

Accountability means that you are responsible for your choices and actions and are the first and last line of defence for your integrity. Self-discipline is your primary method for improving yourself, desirous and pursuing good things.

As an accountable person seeking to change, you start with yourself since you can only change yourself. When you desire to see a change, you do not wait for others to change, but you first consider what you must change about yourself. You examine your thinking to see how your thoughts hold you back from moving forward. When faced with a decision, you do not need others to tell you what to do—you know what you ought to do, and you will do it.

Holding yourself accountable means that you don’t see yourself as a victim of circumstances arising as consequences of your decisions.

You have a sense of ownership for yourself and the consequences of your actions. You do not let others do what you must do yourself, and you commit to daily work to accomplish your own goals.

You can grow in personal accountability if you set your mind to it and find encouragement to change your life for the better!
Accountable to Others

No one can live entirely disconnected from other people. You have various relationships with others like parents, lecturers, coach, teammates, and so on. So, in addition to self-accountability, being accountable also means you are willing and able to give an honest account of your conduct to those who deserve to know.

Consider that there are at least four levels of accountability that you could implement to promote your success:

1. Be observed.

2. Report your status.

3. Be evaluated.

4. Explain yourself.

Sometimes it is hard to be objective about your conduct, especially if there is something in your life that you do not recognize. Perhaps you have a pattern of behaviour or mode of thinking that negatively affects others.

Being accountable to others can help you become aware of your blind spots and challenge you to get out of your old routine. Identify and overcome undesirable habits by reviewing your conduct with an accountability partner.

Being accountable to others does not mean you demean yourself or think you are a failure.

Many of the same things you do to promote your personal accountability can empower your responsibility to others. Share your goal and action plan so that your accountability partner knows what you have committed to do.

Report your success and setbacks along the way to help you focus on solutions to keep you moving forward. Provide valid explanations for the choices and actions you have made and ask for their perspective and advice when you are not sure what to do next.

Toxic thinking can affect you more than you know. Negative thoughts rob you of joy and leave you hopeless for any positive outcome.

What can you do to address toxic thoughts?

Your pattern of thought influences the quality of your life. Your actions flow from inward and what you think about and value. So, replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts can help you increase your happiness, build hope, do sports, exercise regularly, join the fitness club, do not take drugs, do not engage in alcoholism, improve your health, focus on your faith, develop relationships, and you will succeed in life.
How Toxic Is Your Thinking?

You declare your thoughts through words—sometimes in conversation with others and other times silently to yourself only. Whatever it may be, pay attention and listen to yourself. Do you find yourself saying these things to yourself or others?

● “I don’t have what it takes. I am not good enough.”

● “I am afraid that _____.”

● “I didn’t do it perfectly, so I’m a failure.”

● “What if I can’t finish in time?”

● “But I might fail.”

● “My behaviour is not hurting anybody.”

● “Sure, I did that, but it was because [someone else did or didn’t do something].”

● “Why is this happening to me? I deserve better than this.”

● “It’s too late to ____. I cannot change now.”

● “I’m just too busy. I’ll do it later.”

● “Nobody cares about my success.”

● “Everything I do fails.”

● “What do other people think about me?”

● “They have it so much better than I do.”

● “If I could only _____, then I would be happy.”

Hopefully, you see how these statements can stifle your progress and keep you trapped in despair.

The Heart of Toxic Thoughts

Beware of cultivating a mind-set or attitude that nurtures destructive thoughts.

Toxic thoughts are false beliefs that negatively influence your life (and the lives of those who are close to you). Your thinking can also affect your health, sleep patterns, anxiety levels, and more.

Consider these examples of toxic thinking:

● Personalizing failure

● Fearing rejection

● Requiring perfection

● Justifying bad behaviour

● Fearing failure and avoiding risk

● Viewing self as a victim

● Being hopeless about the future

● Doubting yourself excessively

● Procrastinating for no good reason

● Shifting blame to other people or circumstances.

● Fearing loss

● Envying others

● Worrying about things outside of your control

● Making your happiness contingent on circumstances

You should expect to have occasional negative thoughts. You will face disappointment, rejection, and frustration. But will you orient your thinking around these negative situations? Beware of cultivating a mind-set or attitude that nurtures destructive thoughts. Instead, focus on replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts that can carry you forward.
How to Promote Healthy Thinking

It is not enough to eliminate toxic thinking—you must develop healthy thinking to take its place.

The following are some things you can do to replace bad thoughts:
Give Thanks

Foundational to other patterns of positive thought is the practice of gratitude. Practice attitude of gratitude Be thankful and count your blessings. Before you address an apparently negative circumstance, pause to give thanks for the good things you can see in this. Look for the positive in any situation.

Be Generous.

Forget yourself and do good to others. What can you do to bless others who face difficulties? Foster compassion toward others and prove it by helping to meet their needs. It is not enough to eliminate toxic thinking—you must develop healthy thinking to take its place.
Look for the Good. Keep things in the proper perspective. Things are rarely as bad as they seem.

Consider problems as opportunities for positive solutions. Look for the good that can come. And do not judge based on appearances only. Things are not always as they seem. You might be surprised at the good that lies in a seemingly bad situation, or the bad that resides in what you thought was good.
Be receptive to criticism

Yes, you will make mistakes, and you can always do better. When others around you point out your faults, take care to listen to the truth.

Avoid taking correction as a personal attack and learn from it instead. Do not blame other people for your choices and actions. Identify what is in your control to change and focus on these things.
Plan and Do. - Don't procrastinate

You might have valid reasons to delay the pursuit of a goal. But, while caution is helpful to avoid disaster, it can also prevent you from taking appropriate actions. Do not be paralyzed by constant analysis and avoid taking responsibility for things outside of your control.

Set measurably goals, start with small tasks to build momentum, and work up from there. Take reasonable risks and periodically evaluate your progress. When you encounter obstacles, look for appropriate alternatives. But stay in the race and do not quit. Focus on what you can do to change your situation. Accept what you can't change and move on.

Today is the day to exchange toxic thoughts for healthy thoughts. The more you validate false beliefs, the more you allow them to undermine your progress. Acknowledge your shortcomings and external challenges but focus on solutions that you can achieve. What can you do to learn, change, and grow?

Focusing: is one of the most powerful elements of progress in leadership

Some have said that focus means to “Follow One Course Until Success.”

What is that course? Take time to clarify what it is that you want and why you want it.

Maybe you want to change but you don’t see a path forward. While you will need a plan and process to change, first define your direction without thinking about how you could ever make this happen. Don’t limit the good change that you desire.
What Do You Want to Change?

What aspect of your life do you want to change? The necessary or desired change might be obvious right away. But you might also brainstorm and write down several ideas to help you be clear and specific.

What problem do you want to solve?

Take stock of who, what, and where you are now. What problem do you want to solve? What do you want to change about your character, your attitude, your thoughts, your words, your actions, your relationships, or your circumstances?

How does this proposed change fit with other priorities in your life? What can you focus on now that might allow other changes to follow more easily?

Be sure to make the change about yourself and not other people. What others do are not in your control. You are responsible for you.

What Will the Change Look Like?

Once you’ve clarified what you want to change, think about what the change would look like. What will be different about you? What is your desired outcome?

What will be different about you?

Ask yourself: what is success? How will it be measured or otherwise determined? How will you (and others) know if you have changed?

How does your proposed change move you forward toward your bigger goals? Write your own ending to your story. Own your story,

Why Do You Want to Change?

Why do you want this? What do you expect to gain as a result? What is drawing you forward? What is compelling or exciting about this change?

What do you want to avoid? What is undesirable about your present condition or situation? What makes it unwelcome in your life? Why do you want to avoid the prospective result of not changing?

Who really wants this change? Is this something that you desire? Is change being forced upon you by someone else?

Are you really committed to the change? If so, you are more likely to accomplish it. If not, why not? Do you need to modify the goal to make it personally desirable or at least palatable?

Are you really committed to the change?

Identify your real concern by asking “Why?” Repeat this process until you are satisfied that you have isolated the fundamental reason that you want to change. Evaluate your reasons as appropriate.

You will be more committed to pursuing the change through good times and bad times. Remember to FOCUS—“Follow One Course Until Success.”


It will be difficult to talk about a better Nigeria without considering the negative impact of mass migration of youthful population (‘JAPA’) on our economy and its future.

What is this migration called: It is the movement of a person or a group of people to settle in another place, often across a political or administrative boundary. Migration can be temporal or permanent, and it may be voluntary or forced. It is good to know that migration is not exclusive to humans. Animals migrate too.

Migration may impose high human capital cost for the Country by leaving the country without the human capital necessary to achieve long-term economic growth.

When countries experience high levels of migration, the young population of that country (country of origin) will not be able to provide economic contributions to the development of their country of origin.

This can result in a significant loss of wealth to the country as a whole.

Economic migration is the movement of people from one country to another to benefit from greater economic opportunities in the receiving country.

Political push factors that influence migration are typically persecution based on political identification, civil war and/or policy changes.

The JAPA problem is due to lack of employment and social guarantees on our young population and not due to any political persecution.

The most negative impact on our country is the fact that young graduates (and our highly skilled professionals) leave the country for better opportunities.

Today many of our engineers, IT specialists, doctors, nurses, engineers, and very brilliant professionals are lost to other countries.

We cannot build our economy and cannot sustain domestic growth and retention of quality manpower required for nation building if we do not improve on our current situation and if the trend of migration of our very many brilliant young men and women is not halted.

Nigeria has great potentials, we are blessed with many natural resources, we are free of many natural disasters, a large proportion of our population are young people an age bracket that mist of you in this hall belong to, if you JAPA the country will rely on foreigners for needed skills in the future.

I would like to end my presentation today by addressing my friends and colleagues in leadership position in our country: the problems we face as a nation today are due to the failings as leaders; the garden where we eat from today is the seed that we planted in recent years, most of the social vices that we deal with are traceable to our action and inactions, and history will not forgive us if we continue to treat the young: most of whom are our children, cousins, nephews, kinsmen, the way we do.

We must now embark on significant damage control to curb the trend of inflation and failure of public institutions, which in part is leading to migration of our young population due to no hope for a future in the country.

Let us take conscious effort to solve our national problems and the time is now.

There is time for everything, and the time is now that we must reawaken our sense of nationalism and patriotism and stay here to build a nation where you all will be proud and a destination for many other nationals.

Thank you.

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