Zambia Institute of Chartered Accountants (ZICA) president, Cecilia Zimba says, efforts to cling to the old concept of leadership in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, will lead to a bleak future as leadership has changed from being positional to serving others.
Mrs Zimba said the pandemic had given stakeholders a platform to see that the future of leadership was no longer about those on top of the hierarchy but the ones who served others on the frontline.
She noted that when it mattered the most globally, it was not the Managing Director or Director of Finance who mattered the most, but the nurse, doctor and other frontline workers who bravely left their young ones to serve people in the wards who were helplessly and desperately gasping for breath.
“If we cling to the old concept of leadership, our future is doomed. There is no such thing as getting back to the way life was. I dare say, those leaders who want to cling to the thought that there is ‘life as it was’ to go back to are going to be irrelevant going forward,” she said.
Mrs Zimba said this today in her welcome remarks at the International Executive Retreat in Livingstone, being held under the theme: Leadership extraordinary, success against all odds.
The inaugural retreat is being held in collaboration with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Malawi (ICAM).
Mrs Zimba further said the country needs leaders who would help stakeholders cooperate and not compete since competition as the lifeblood of economies was a false concept.
“Cooperation is the life-blood. This means we need leaders who are going to change our theories of economics. We are better when we realise we are in this together: Malawi, Zambia and all our Neighbours,” Mrs Zimba said.
And Institute of Chartered Accountants of Malawi president, Phyles Kachingwe said through manifestation of its successes, Africa has challenging stereotypes imposed on it by colonial masters.
“We are no longer primitive but architects of our own destiny which we will frame on our own,” she said.
Meanwhile, during a presentation dubbed ‘Transformational Change Leadership’ Absa Bank Managing Director, Mizinga Melu said leadership was a calling and required making a difference in people’s lives.
Mrs Melu said there was a hunger for true leadership in the country but bemoaned the high number of bad leaders in various organizations.
She said what made her cry as a leader was bad leadership.
“I cry when I see bad leaders, trust me, I cry. There are so many bad leaders…leaders who ignore, belittle their subordinates but I have hope that things can still change on the continent, in Zambia and Malawi,” she said.