Hello <<First Name>>,
It’s great to be with you again. How has your week been? I hope you are keeping safe, washing your hands with soap and water or making use of alcohol-based sanitisers. Don’t forget also to maintain proper social distancing. COVID-19 is still very much with us.
Someone said something about me last week that made me think about what I wanted to share with you all today. I remember when I set up Makon in 1997, rather than refer to myself as the Managing Director or General Manager or CEO, I called myself the Operations Manager.
People would come into my office wanting to see the boss, and mistaking my office for the reception. It actually took me five years of working for Makon to get the role of Managing Director. I made sure I earned that title. And even today, I still don’t care for titles. I tell people that my name is Seyi Makinde, whatever title they choose to add is out of deference.
I would rather do the work and not get the credit than insist on getting credit for every work I do. This is not a common mindset in Nigerian political circles. In fact, when I first assumed office in May 2019, the fact that I was not primarily interested in getting credit for work done made people think that I was not doing anything and some even referred to me as an audio governor.
And so, when I read from my February book of the month about the importance of the ethics of personal virtues over the ethics of laws, it struck a chord. By the way, this March, I am still reading “How to Think Politically: Sages, Scholars and Statesmen Whose Ideas Have Shaped the World” by Graeme Garrard and James Bernard Murphy.
According to Confucius one of the ways to bring about reforms in society is for individuals to reform themselves and their way of thinking. Our society is full of people who want to take all the glory even for work not done. So many people believe in answering grand titles. But if we are looking to make a real impact on society, we should be asking ourselves what we can do to contribute to a better society.
I remember when I told some of my friends that I wanted to run for political office, they were alarmed. One of them asked me, “Can one person change the world?” Well, one person may not be able to change the world, but one person can start others thinking in ways that will make them all join hands to change the world.
So, this is my message for you today, if you want to be part of the solution, then you have to work on reforming yourself and your thinking. Start today. Decide on what you want to stand for, what you want to be known for and then become that change in your area of influence.
We are approaching the end of the first quarter of the year 2021 and this is a good time to evaluate our activities for the past three months and think about what adjustments to make going forward. Can you still remember your resolutions for the year 2021? By now you should be heading into 25% done. If not, now is the time to check what is holding you back.
Thank you for allowing me into your life again today.
Talk to you again soon!