It was yet another insightful LYP Entrepreneurs and Professionals networking Forum in April 2015 where members and guests got a chance to interact and share leadership insights with Patricia Ithau, the Outgoing CEO L’Oréal East Africa
Patricia shared on a light note that from her understanding of the group, she expected to meet ‘young’ people and when she met her audience she realized that the term ‘young’ is relative – and it ranges between 20 -55 years.
Below are some highlights of the talk.
- Leadership is the journey you chart, You can ever be a leader unless you define that journey and leave a positive impact.
- Not everyone will understand your journey. but It is fine if nobody understands the journey that you have defined. Remember that it’s not their journey.
- Create your own journey because no one else can fit in your footprint. Example: Miles Davis “I don’t lead musicians. They lead me. I listen to them and learn from what they do best”. Her journey started off at Unilever where from 90 candidates who had applied for the management trainee position, they were shortlisted to 25 candidates and later they selected only 8 people. She was the only female in the team.
- Determine the impact and influence you make. It’s not how you stand alone but how you put people together. Be the person who listens to everything. Learn from others.
- Look at people you admire and imitate that which you admire in them.
- Articulate your vision. Project what you know. Draw people and learn from them. Command attention.
- Everything you have is good enough. Recognize that there are people who do great. Everyone has a special gift and unfortunately we spent time discounting them. The fact that you have breath is all that matters. Don’t spent time thinking of what you do not have but think about what you have.
- You can’t change the direction of the wind, but you can adjust the sails to withstand the wind to always reach the destination.
- Learn to be flexible. What can I do to make it work? You must learn to adjust yourself to get to the same place you want to be.
- Prioritize and know what your values are. Example: To grow in her career, the position required an international experience. This meant that she needed to leave her family to gain that experience. In her values, her family came first; she therefore influenced the management to consider facilitating her family to visit her. She was the first woman to change the policy that would allow her husband to visit.
- Give people the confidence to believe in you. Give everyone a chance. Give credit to others.
4 points on maximizing your impact
- Be reliable:This means being dependable, worthy of Trust, steadfast and responsible.
- Make the most of every opportunity. Example : Dr. Julius Kipng’etich, he left an impact at Kenya Wildlife Services. Be a transformational leader. Do not look down on any opportunity that comes your way. Say yes first.
- Be seen and heard. Have the confidence and power to speak your mind. Who do you want to be and why do you want to do it. When you go to a room go to the front.
- Build your personal brand, Brand has association and value. Who you are?
- Clarity – What do you stand for?
- Consistency – Example: A bottle of coke tastes the same way. Be consistent.
- Constantly out there (Constancy)
- Constantly be visible. You cannot be hidden. – Be sure that it’s the same person being seen and be clear. – Look at yourself and be clear who you are, what do you really value. Example of values – Be original, helpful, patient responsible consistent etc. How you get to the top
- Leadership is seen and felt.
It is a positive feeling and ability to help others and the positive impact you leave on others. What people remember about you and are willing to follow. It is the ability to grow others and help them realize their potential. It’s the willingness to deliver.