By ROSHAN THIRAN
Imagine what could be achieved if a team of dedicated, passionate people came together with the shared vision of growing young people into leaders, building communities of love, and helping to transform the nation, one leader at a time.
This was the Leaderonomics vision, born 10 years ago; and it still drives every single person in the company today.
Our team recently took a walk down memory lane and we reflected on the lessons learnt over the past years.
These are the few significant ones which enabled us to grow over the past decade:
1) Always Give
When we are the first to give and expect nothing in return, we are constantly surprised when others give to us.
Giving is the foundation of our success at Leaderonomics. And it has become a deep part of our DNA today. Everyone is expected to give their time, resources, energy, and their heart.
2) Relationships are key
You can’t give unless you love people. And so, we invest deeply in building relationships. Not just with customers but also with partners, vendors, stakeholders, and the community around us.
Each person matters and we treasure every relationship we have. Each relationship blossoms and brings us new opportunities and access into new markets. And when we keep giving to grow these relationships, we keep getting and growing in return.
3) Build an ecosystem
We learnt this lesson early.
For us, our core strength is our network of partnerships. Without our partners, we are nothing. Our partnership with countless organisations, individuals, and networks has enabled us to not only reach more people with our message, but has also helped us scale the work we do.
And we build an ecosystem of partnerships to help us keep scaling and growing.
4) Never lose sight of the vision
Our vision has remained the same for the past decade. We reinforce it monthly at our all-employee meetings. We embed it into everything we do: from our KPIs to our internal measurements and our organisational strategy, everything is based on our vision and key milestones.
Many organisations relegate the vision into an unessential part of their business dialogue. We believe that a key part of our growth was from ensuring there was constant vision alignment.
5) Build platforms
Often times, we organise many programmes and events. But our big lesson learnt is that we need to focus less on events and activities, and more on building platforms to enable others to leverage from it.
We learnt this only over the past few years and are now slowly transitioning our teams from activity-based to platform building.
A platform empowers everyone (including people who not part of our team) to be able to organise activities through us, for others. This helps us multiply and scale our work.
But this is very hard and tedious, and it takes much effort. Yet, like how Google, Facebook, and Amazon have shown us, it is well worth the effort to build platforms.
The big investment
Earlier this week, we had our 10-year celebration at JW Marriott KL. Thanks to our partner, YTL Foundation, we were able to bring all our past, present, and future employees together for this grand celebration.
Future employees, you may ask? Yes, we had many of the youths whom we have helped nurture, develop, and grow into leaders there with us too.
And as I pondered on what to write this week, I started to reflect on our mission to help transform the nation, one person at a time. And a decade ago, we started doing it primarily with the youth, one young person at a time.
The Irish playwright, George Bernard Shaw once quipped that “youth is wasted on the young”, but he might have revised his witticism if he could see the young people in action at our dinner on Monday.
One of the prime reasons why Leaderonomics was founded is because I had seen just how much impact young people could have on society when they are given the right support.
Across our Youth Camps, and many school clubs and programmes, Leaderonomics has supported thousands of young people each year to cultivate and develop their self-esteem, confidence, and to begin the journey of realising their potential.
When young people begin their journey of discovery with Leaderonomics, many of them are initially apprehensive. Some have doubts about their ability, some worry about the uncertainty of how they’ll cope with new challenges, and others are simply unsure of what’s expected.
In the end, the result is always the same.
Our amazing youth teams help children across the country discover their strengths and abilities, and show them how to put these to good use.
Whether it relates to leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, or communication, the young people always surprise themselves with their own ingenuity, resilience, and talents.
Over the years, the incredible team at Leaderonomics has done a fantastic job in helping so many to realise what they’re capable of, and while I’m proud of every single person who has given so much to help develop Malaysia’s future leaders, I’m also aware of the amount of work that’s still left to do.
Examples of the power of youth are all around us.
Millions throughout the world have been left awe-inspired by the courageous stories of Malala Yousafzai, Boyan Slat, Yash Gupta, and Mary Grace Henry – to name just a few of the young people changing the world. (If you haven’t already, check out their stories and be prepared to be inspired!)
Oftentimes, we older generations can be dismissive of youth, but there is no denying that there is so much potential and capability waiting to be tapped into, if only we are willing to invest and provide them with the space to create and innovate. And the results are always super-impressive.
Will you partner with us?
At Leaderonomics, we continue to be unwavering in our commitment to invest in the future by nurturing the youth of today so that our nation can enjoy a prosperous tomorrow… and we need your help.
We see so many children with the potential to do great things, but due to a lack of funds and access, they never get to make their impact on the world. It’s sad to see so much talent and so many dreams wasted and cast aside.
I’ve seen first-hand how much of an impact children from Sabah and Sarawak, for example, can make when they’re provided guidance, support, and care in their growth.
As Malaysia turns the page to a new chapter in its history, surely our young people will be writing the passages of what’s to come in the next decade and beyond.
But they can’t write the story without our help; just as we couldn’t have made our mark without others before us giving something back to those who would come after them.
As leaders, as Malaysian citizens, we all have a duty to invest in our collective future. Today, we hold it in our hands, and it is the decisions we make today that will affect our nation’s future for better or for worse.
So, if you want to be a part of our journey to help make a difference in Malaysia, do consider supporting our youth work.
It’ll be the greatest, most fulfilling investment you’ll ever make. There’s no greater gift we can offer than the gift of transformation.
All proceeds are invested in helping our young people become the best they can be – and no doubt they’ll inspire us all to be better, do better, and work together to build an incredible legacy for our country.
Prefer an e-mag reading experience? This article is also available in our 24th November, 2018 digital issue. Access our digital issues here.