Quality Education Critical for Advancement of Informal Leadership

Most people perceive leadership only in terms of positions of power, where they can exert their influence in either achieving their personalized desires or making things done their way. However, there are other forms of leadership, which invaluably lead to not only personal, but also organizational and national progress. Consider expertise as a guide to venturing into leadership. One is able to influence change anywhere only through acquiring superior skills, which could be applied in a vocation or profession.

Another excellent example is moral authority. People who are honest, trustworthy and thus believable tend to positively create their own sphere of influence, not only in the society, but also the organizations they work for. They are looked upon to provide guidance to others around them. But, why is it that informal leadership is so remote in our situation?

Sometimes in 2014, I came across disturbing statistics from research conducted by the East African inter-Universities Council. The same indicated that more than 50% of our graduates are not only unemployed, but also unemployable. Those revelations made me set on a journey of searching for not only the truth, but also a solution for the problem. The good news is that the resultant solution is now formally documented and well recognized, particularly in the education system.

Nevertheless, the first stop during the search for the solution was the ministry of education headquarters, where I realized that they were aware of the problem, but were still striving with suitable answers. Actually, they were considering making internship a compulsory experience for all university students.

Conversely, our universities as I came to learn were not aware of unemployability of graduates and were largely imagining that they were producing more graduates than our economy can accommodate. The truth however is that graduates, who are empowered with the power to read and do what appertains to the degrees conferred, should have no problem securing lucrative jobs or creating their own. The massive unemployment then must have been an indication of a bigger problem, as we have now come to learn.

The results for the Kenya certificate of Secondary Education for 2016 (KSCE) seem to have revealed the genesis of the unemployment and unemployabilty challenges.  There is no way that students with poor or compromised grades would end up becoming better during their university education, or thereafter in life. Further, no amount of education or certificates can improve their chances of being productive in the future. It is like feeding a Boran cow with daily bran and expecting it to increase the milk yield.

Meanwhile, the principles of Total Quality Management (TQM) advocate a concept termed as Quality First Deployment (QFD). It is about ensuring quality input during the initial stages of the production process. In the school system context, it means admitting only the best students for university education. When this condition is observed, it is highly likely that only a few of the best students will end up becoming mediocre along the education path and thereafter. The converse is also true. When we feed the university education system with students who have benefited from leaked examinations, continued mediocrity in the economy and entire national spectrum is guaranteed.

Thus, based on the Kenya Certificate of Secondary education (KCSE) results for last year, it’s clearly evident that innumerable students with compromised grades have been filling the ever growing numbers of private and public universities.  Artificial demand for university education that was driven by compromised grades was constantly on the increase, therefore. Conversion of technical institutes and polytechnics into universities became the norm. Consequently, those students who ought to have joined polytechnics to study technical vocations such as plumbing, building and others ended up becoming unemployable graduates.

Needless to emphasize, university education is about empowerment of the beneficiaries for the benefit of the economy, and not about utilization of available resources. Therefore, when the beneficiaries end up becoming disempowered, education loses meaning.  But why has all this been happening?

While physically in the 21st Century, we seem to be largely guided by the dynamics or thinking of the 20th Century. The world was then driven by what was known as information/knowledge era.  It was about acquisition of knowledge and certificates for us to be relevant in the marketplace. The more the certificates obtained, the more the chances of acquiring lucrative jobs and therefore perceived success in life. In a changing and highly competitive world, such approaches are unlikely to continue being relevant.

The developed world especially, is now deeply entrenched in the talent era. It is no longer about degrees and certificates just for the sake. It is about aligning our focuses towards life, guided by our natural abilities. Our education should in other words recognize not only our physical but also intellectual talents.

Therefore, Universities should only accommodate the best minds. Those minds should likewise be aligned to their intellectual orientations or natural talents. Such students are likely to internalize knowledge and eventually be able to apply it in the real life situations. Essentially, there is no glory in producing intellectual fools. That is people with degrees that allegedly support knowledge that may not be applied in real life situations. Any knowledge acquired from the school system needs to contribute to the improvement of the welfare of humanity one way or the other. If not, it is of no value and should therefore not be pursued.

The way forward for now is that universities must only admit qualified students based on existing national policy guidelines. It does not matter that there may not be enough students to be registered. Let the universities re-align themselves to the laws of supply and demand. Their facilities should in other words support the admission of only qualified students.

Apparently, private and parallel degree programs seem threatened with discontinuation, based on the prevailing circumstances. Nevertheless, there is a window through which some of the demand may be sustained. This may happen only if there is focus on students, who cannot qualify for admission in the normal university programs. There may be need to realign towards diploma education in the various areas of study, which may eventually lead to degrees in the future.

Else, we cannot afford to backtrack and continue with mediocre university education that results from artificially created demand. Evidently, the efforts of saving our nation from continued mediocrity need to be sustained and supported by all, who have the interests of our future at heart.   It is only then that we shall manage to continually harness either the formal or informal leadership potential lying within each of us.

 

How Else Can You Benefit From Us?

INITIAL EMPOWERMENT SOLUTIONS

  1. An absolutely FREE 15-minute insightful presentation (in Nairobi only) on

(i)The prevailing national and organizational challenges

(ii)The genesis of the challenges and

(Iii) Impact of the challenges

(iv) The respective solutions

The focus of this solution is to introduce (during organizational meetings) the life changing strategy guide titled “Career Dynamics in the 21st Century,” now approved for the school system by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development.

2) A Two Hour seminar titled “Unleashing the Human Performance Potential,” based on the principles advocated in “Career Dynamics in the 21st Century” This is conducted for all employees without any limitation of numbers (fees depends on location). The seminar is already enormously popular in mainstream Churches and learning institutions.

3) A full day seminar titled “Maximum Performance Strategy.” This involves application of the principals advocated in “Career Dynamics in the 21st Century,” through an experiential learning process. The seminar accommodates 20 participants per session ((fees depends on location).

WELCOME FOR YOUR DESIRED SOLUTION

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