With 56 countries and almost a billion people, Africa is the youngest continent with the highest economic growth in the last two decades. Emerging from world economic crisis almost unscathed, its quest has been to eradicate the spread of chronic diseases. It has recently shown bio-diversity in its natural resources and managed to move from its so called hopeless continent to a rising continent in 10 years therefore what would Africa possibly need with such praises? As Ali would put it, some would say if its not broke then dont fix it but then what are the processes and policies that Africa needs so as to maintain and attribute to the Africa rise? With a continent that is so diverse it cant be treated as a single entity, its vast resources and endless opportunities certain needs are recommended to help stimulate growth and improve Africa.
Ali Mufuruki, Chairman and CEO of Tanzania based Infotech Investment Group Ltd was present at the Great Africans Getaway hosted by Strathmore Business School to give a session on Transforming leadership: What Africa needs. The event the first of its kind held by the Business School at the Great Rift Valley Lodge was an effort to bring together great Africans comprised of fellow Alumni, Business Executives, Governors and Senators to a fun filled golf tournament weekend held to partake in knowledge sharing and building strong networks.
Ali Mufuruki is one of Africas top business moguls and the Lead CEO of the Tanzania CEOs Roundtable that brings together CEOs of the top 50 companies in Tanzania was able to share in his vast experience on what he thinks are Africas top 5 needs which can be executed if Africa has the right discipline.
So what are Africas top 5 Needs?
He pointed out that Africa needs to believe/imagine something incredible almost impossible that can be done with confidence and with a plan which requires discipline, knowledge and collaboration. Mr. Mufuruki primarily attributed his talk to the Venus and Serena film , which takes an unfiltered look into the remarkable lives of the greatest sister-act professional tennis has ever seen. In a sport (Tennis) where they were not welcomed, the indomitable Williams sisters faced the opposition with grace and courage not only breaking new ground for female and African American athletes everywhere, but dominating the women’s game for over a decade. The film tells the inspiring story of how these two women, against all odds, but the help of visionary parents, made it to the top. (Source: Wikipedia), Here are Mr. Mufurukis top 5 needs.
Firstly Imagination: Africa needs to have a boundless vision of a future that is fantastic to the point of being crazy leading us to strive to be like the rest of the world if not better. Africa has what it takes to be a great continent all that is needed is to imagine ourselves as being great. We need to not limit ourselves but to let ourselves dream big.
Self-confidence: Africans should have the confidence to do things by itself other than delegate. Africa has a billion people and more reasons to be confident; it has more land and water than any other continent more minerals more bio diversity and more young people what then keeps us from being confident? For what we hold as a continent the world needs. Confidence is precious but then again very fragile and can be broken quickly.
Thirdly a bold Plan: Its great to invest in visions such as vision 2030 or even a greater vision 2050 that together as continents we can build our GDP. For no single country can make it by itself. Therefore Africa needs to make an impact, to plan together with all 54 countries to craft a plan for Africa and come up with ways to grow ourselves
Execution discipline: Africa needs to work hard, sacrifice have discipline. As a continent we need to avoid excuses and looking for ways to say that we cant make it. In the end Africa needs to stop looking for ways to attain instant gratification all our effort must be put in for the goof of the continent.
Lastly we need stay motivated and focused to understand the world around us to find direction to stay the course in the face of challenges, to seek perfection in everything we do to win. Africa needs individuals to master the use and application of these tools. Not ordinary people but enlightened value driven extraordinary effective leaders. The continent still has enormous potential, and business leaders have a big role to play in unlocking it a lot of lessons could be learned from successful business leaders in Africa. We therefore as a continent need to choose the best among us to lead Developing more business leaders is crucial to Africa to address its big challenges. We need more specialized business schools such as Strathmore Business School; develop these kinds of leaders. African enterprises and business leaders should therefore be the part of the catalysts in developing business schools that not only expose executives to international best practices, but also adapt these to African business realities.
Click here to watch Ali Mufuruki in action during the Great Africans Getaway