Sunday, September 07, 2014

The Vantage Point

Despite the fact that I squeal over the possibilities of an engagement announcement and get a little 'mushy' perusing wedding and other related photos, bridal showers weren't events I used to be at in the past. Probably because it was not really in vogue where I grew up and even in my time. So being at my lil sister's bridal shower was a rare one for me and memorable too.

Now I also don't know what actually goes down at most showers, but the planners of this one made sure there was good time devoted to talking. During this session, questions were asked and lots of counsel shared, mostly from the experiences of those who have been married years before. All to better prepare the new bride for the new phase.

I felt privileged being able to contribute my own bit, having been on this journey for some years too. It seemed natural to look back at the many lessons I'd garnered over the years and to bring it to such a forum to share.

In reality, we all stand in what I'll call 'Points of Advantage'. We've been there, we've seen that, we've done that. We have had successes that brought us gladness. We have had falls, stirred ourselves up, brushed off the dusts and resumed the runs. In all, we have grown and gathered such wealth of knowledge that only experience doles to those it has had direct contact with.

On another hand, life gives us opportunities to leave footprints for those coming after, such that they would run even better. It allows us from the strength we have gained to provide a helping hand or a supporting shoulder to that one who has become weary.

However, at other times, it challenges us to seek out those opportunities to share our wisdom because of the Vantage Point where we now stand. It is easy to look down on certain moments of our lives and assume no one needs to hear that story, but you'll be amazed at how desperately some need them.  

I remember the movie – Vantage Point, which I watched years back. It showed clearly how the spots where people have stood in life have better positioned them for specific views of life's happenings. Eventually our vantage points when better perceived helps connect those dots when we've stepped out of it all.

So then, as we live and learn, let us maximise our many Vantage Points so someone else may see better, understand deeper, or just simply be reminded that that impossible is possible.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Obituary: 'Kunle Olaifa 1980-2014

Until his passing one week ago in a car accident, Mr. 'Kunle Olaifa was the Head of Human Resources, West Africa, for a large multinational company.
A dedicated HR professional, Kunle built many careers.  He of course built a stellar career for himself, with stints at Adecco HR Consulting, GE Energy, and Triangle Nigeria, as well as Career Solutions Africa and Samsung.
He was an alumnus of the University of Ilorin and Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Abeokuta.  He was also an AIESECer, an associate fellow of NLI - the Nigeria Leadership Initiative, and a thought-leader and frequent speaker on human resources at various fora including the Leadership Academies at DayStar Christian Center. 
But we remember him most for being a pillar of several communities, a leader, one who was very intelligent, visionary, concerned, engaged, funny, and kind.  In plain language, he was a good friend, inspiring mentor, and a father figure to many.  He was married with children.
I will post below a few of the writings of Kunle that I can find on the internet, and hope you join his family, friends, and associates, as we all pay our respects to a fellow who lived an exemplary life.  

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The Unforgettable Boss

Unforgettable bosses possess qualities that may not show up on paper but always show up where it matters most -- in the minds and even hearts of the people they lead.


Here are some of the qualities of truly unforgettable bosses:

1. They believe the unbelievable.

2. They see opportunity in instability and uncertainty.

3. They wear their emotions on their sleeves.

Memorable bosses are highly professional and yet also openly human.
Professionalism is admirable. Professionalism -- with a healthy blend of humanity -- is inspiring.

4. They protect others from the bus.
Terrible bosses throw their employees under the bus.
Good bosses never throw their employees under the bus.
Memorable bosses see the bus coming and pull their employees out of the way often without the employee knowing until much, much later... if ever, because memorable bosses never try to take credit.
And if they can't, they take the hit. (And later speak privately to the employee in question.)

5. They’ve been there, done that... and still do that.

6. They lead by permission, not authority.

7. They embrace a larger purpose.

8. They take real, not fake risks.

In short, memorable bosses inspire others to achieve their dreams: by words, by actions, and most importantly, by example.

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