The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

YALI at The Rockefeller Center: Leadership and Self-Awareness with Beatrice Selotlegeng

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This is the fifth in an ongoing series of articles on the Rockefeller Center's participation in the Young African Leaders Initiative, or YALI.

This past week, Dartmouth's visiting YALI fellows continued their leadership program at The Rockefeller Center with a session directed by Beatrice Selotlegeng entitled "Leadership and Self-Awarenes." Leading the fourth in a series of six sessions, Selotlegeng, who was raised in Kenya, talked about being self-aware with passion, enthusiasm, and charm. This spurred personal discussion and reflection for the YALI fellows on their strengths and weaknesses as leaders. Her knowledge of leadership as a professional academic adviser for the College of Business at Ohio University and her experience in aviation management in Botswana provided insights to the importance of self-awareness when leading an organization.

Beatrice Selotlegeng of Ohio University leads a session with the YALI fellows

Beatrice Selotlegeng began by discussing Nelson Mandela’s definition of self-awareness as the necessary first step toward exploring and understanding yourself and toward change. This definition inspired reflections from Zamafuze Ngcobo, a YALI fellow from South Africa who was a Mandela Scholar. Zamafuze cited the importance of being self-aware to delegating and managing weaknesses and surrounding yourself with capable and positive friends as a support system, as Nelson Mandela did.

J.J. Segbefia, a YALI fellow from Ghana who works in experiential learning and outdoor leadership, contributed to the discussion with his personal definition of emotional intelligence as “applying reason to heart to make decisions.” With this definition and the help of Beatrice Selotlegeng, fellows analyzed their attributes and management techniques from online assessments in small groups. The session concluded with a collective discussion of practicing UBUNTU, meaning I am who I am through my interconnectedness with others, and personal reflection.

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