By: Momodou Justice Darboe
Middle-level officers and senior executives from the various central banks in WAIFEM’s constituent member countries are currently in Banjul for a four-day course on developing leadership and management skills.
WAIFEM is an acronym for West African Institute of Financial and Economic Management.
In his address at the opening ceremony of the four-day course on Monday, the Governor of the Central Bank of The Gambia, Hon. Buah Saidy, underscored that leadership and management work in a mutually reinforcing manner for the achievement of the desired outcomes, aims, and objectives of the organization.
“Management is about directing, coordinating, planning, and executing, while leadership is about getting things done through the injection of a participatory approach,” Governor Saidy said in a speech delivered on his behalf by the Director of Human Resources at the Central Bank of The Gambia, Mr. BabucarrCham.
According to the CBG governor, the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia/Ukraine war have affected many countries in multiple ways.
“The advent of COVID-19 and the Russian/Ukraine war deeply affected the economic conditions of many countries in the world, especially our part of the world where we sometimes depend on sustaining our economies through trade and support from the Western countries,” he stated. “We have seen how the value chain eroded against most African states due to our inability to maintain well-balanced economies by enhancing food self-sufficiency and other economic indicators. That fundamental task facing us now is how to manage the situationthat we find ourselves in, and what kind of leadership is needed to alleviate the challenges facing our institutions, countries, and continent as a whole.”
According to the CBG governor, The Gambia, just like other parts of the world, is struggling with rising inflation, climate change, security threats, food insecurity, rapid technological changes, geo-political issues, and the like.
“To make a turnaround and set up a trajectory to success, we need leadership skills to navigate through these trying times,” Governor Saidy pointed out.
He explained: “In view of the various factors I just mentioned, it is essential for organizations to prepare leaders and managers towards addressing the challenges of today and tomorrow. It may be true that leaders are born, but I have a strong belief that leaders are made as well if they are given the right training and coaching to become one. This course is designed to develop leadership skills for the achievement of our organizational goals and objectives.”
The Director of WAIFEM, Dr. Baba Yusuf Musa, emphasized that developing leadership and management skills plays a vital role in driving organizational success.
“Effective leadership does not only influence the productivity and performance of teams but also has a profound impact on employee engagement and professional growth,” the WAIFEM DG stressed. He continued: “By investing in leadership and management skills development, organizations can cultivate the essential skills and competencies required to navigate complex challenges, foster a positive work environment, and inspire their workforce to achieve their full potential.
Dr. Musa explained that the main objective of the four-day course is to empower participants with the necessary skills and techniques on the principles and concepts of leadership and management in both the public and private sectors.
“The course is also expected to enable middle and senior level executives learn and apply advanced techniques in managing the different generations in their workplaces,” he explained.
The themes to be covered during the four-day course, according to the WAIFEM boss, include cross-functional work challenges and corporate leadership, personal leadership philosophy, confidence building and capabilities, building bonds among peers to accomplish tasks, work ethics and productivity enhancement, the role of a leader, leading change, communication and leadership, intergenerational value change, among others.