Renowned media practitioner, Mr Bernard Koku Avle has prevailed on graduates of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) to strive to become what he described as ‘leadership professionals’ as they step into the world of work.
“In an increasingly complex and problem-riddled world, what we actually need are not just professional accountants, professional marketers or professional administrators or HR Managers,” Mr. Avle says.
“We need professionals in leadership – leading professionals, what I call Leadership Professionals!”
Mr Avle made these remarks in an address to the 2021 graduating class of the Faculty of Management Studies at the Third Session of 13th Congregation of UPSA.
In all, a total of 1,127 students graduated with various degrees and diplomas.
Mr. Avle, who is the General Manager of Citi FM/TV, explained that a leadership professional was not essentially a person with a title or certificate but rather a graduate with the right “temperament and quality to cause a positive change in society.”
He further added that leadership professionals were not merely concerned about their personal well-being or that of their immediate friends and family, but have a broader outlook and awareness of the overall organizational, local, national and global context in which they are operating.
Mr. Avle, the 2017 Ghana Journalist of Year, noted that for fresh graduates entering into the tough world ahead, becoming a leadership professional hinged on four key attributes—vision, integrity, sacrifice and attitude.
He said vision was an indispensable quality of leadership whilst integrity is the most important ingredient needed to stimulate effective leadership.
“In today’s morally fluid world of situational ethics, the temptation to compromise on your values and blow hot and cold in view of challenging situations looms large,” Mr. Avle said.
“But the Professional leader will [stand] to their ground and stand for the truth irrespective of whether they are in business or politics or social services.
“Popularity is cheap, fake awards are many and as for self-glorification on social media and billboards the least said about that the better. Many are those who want to use the short cuts of quick and often cheap media exposure to build their lives and business.
“[However], the leadership Professionals [must] understand that true leadership attainment always comes at a cost. Most lose sleep, many more lose friends, some even lose their lives to attain the freedom their generations need.”
Mr. Avle called on graduands to nurture the right attitude towards work and shift from being wishers to a doers.
UPSA management commended
Mr Avle noted that the tertiary education landscape in Ghana is changing rapidly and the UPSA with its unique approach of academic excellence and cutting-edge professional development is increasingly carving a niche for itself as one of the most important centres of academic excellence in the country.
He therefore commended the Management of the University for their sterling leadership and remarkable level of progress over the past few years.
“Graduates of UPSA should be proud of being part of an excellent institution which has risen to the occasion of unearthing and shaping some of the most influential managers and leaders of our dear nation.
“I wish to commend the leadership of this institution for the remarkable level of progress it has overseen in recent times.”