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Communication as a Core Leadership Trait

Communication as a Core Leadership Trait

Being passionate about writing, I wanted to have a work of mine posted on an AIESEC blog, but the irony was that this eager writer-to-be couldn’t start writing anything until the very last moment; I was worried and anxious, so I preferred to watch an episode of an ongoing television series, which is one of my stress-relieving routines. Who knew that would give me a clue on what I should pen about? There was this piece of dialogue that caught my attention.

“If you have conflicting opinions while working, you need to talk it out with each other and resolve it. Giving rewards or punishments over who’s right and who’s wrong, is not how I work.” – Attorney Jung (Extraordinary Attorney Woo, episode 09)

This, in my opinion, conveys the necessity of strong communication in a team, as well as in an organization. How would people understand what is going on if there is no effective communication? People should interact with one another to learn about what is happening at work, new approaches that will be developed, how well the team performed, what needs to be changed for workers and how it can be changed, and to widen the trust, respect, and the relationship among coworkers by letting them have small chit-chats when they feel overwhelmed. The concern at hand, however, is how crucial excellent communication is to us as one of the fundamental qualities of a leader. There can be diverse characteristics that a strong leader ought to possess in terms of this trait, but I’d choose to deal with two skills- authenticity and listening, that I want to embrace as a leader and as a person.

Authenticity
People do not just open up to everyone; instead, they first determine personalities by spending time with different people. Authenticity- as the word implies, is all about being genuine, and I believe that being authentic and expressing your genuine self to the outer world in such a way that your subordinates could feel you are truly sincere and trustworthy to connect with leads them to form a positive relationship with you and that has a direct influence on your team’s communication behavior. So, let me ask you this: are you an authentic leader upon whom the membership can rely? I guess you are!

Listening
You might have had the impression that someone is uninterested in what you are saying while conversing with them at least once in your life. You felt bad, didn’t you? Nobody likes to be ignored, and obviously, no one will talk to you if you are not listening to what they are saying, and the listener should concentrate; simply being available is incomplete. There’s this saying from Stephen R. Covey that I found interesting and factual – “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” This is where empathy comes into play. Sometimes in life, you need someone to listen to you, someone to share your sorrow with, someone who simply understands that all he needs to do is to be by your side without being judgmental. Similarly, people around you may be in different psychological states for a variety of reasons; listening to them in a more empathetic and humane manner and encouraging them results in them talking to you without hesitating, fearing, or resisting, and thus they will honestly express their thoughts when necessary while being committed to the pleasant working environment in which they are confident that they will be treated kindly, will not be excluded and will always be assisted when demanded and required. It is said that he who is a good communicator is a good listener.

 

Therefore, we, the brave youth leadership, let’s be authentic, for that will distinguish us from the fake. Let’s listen attentively, for there will be a lot of secrets the world wishes to whisper, and let’s evolve together for the world can voice joyously. 

All the best!

Reference: Why Communication Is So Important for Leaders | CCL

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Be Empowered to Empower

“Grab every opportunity you get, try out new things, that’s all about being an AIESECer.”

I remember the very first time my two Local Committee Vice Presidents sat us all down in our induction and spoke to us. After a long day of sessions, jives and fun filled games these words hit me the hardest. On my way home, excited to read all the messages I got as my sugar cubes, I kept thinking what I am supposed to do next. 

I joined AIESEC because I wanted to be a part of something big during my university years and also  because my friend wouldn’t stop nagging me to join AIESEC along with her. As a member I did nothing but follow those words that hit me so hard on my very first AIESEC experience. The applications for RevolUX 2.0, the first physical event in a long time for our entity, opened up and even though I had absolutely no clue what UI/UX designing was  I grabbed that opportunity to try out for it. This has been one of the wisest decisions  I ever took in my AIESEC journey. I was ecstatic  to know that I had been selected for it and this marked the beginning of my favorite memory in AIESEC up to now.

One of the biggest plus points I saw in my AIESEC journey is how much we get recognized for every small effort we put in. This motivated me the most as a newbie and made me have faith in my decision. As an External Relations Organizing Committee Vice President for RevolUX 2.0 as soon as I got to know that we were responsible for raising monetary partners to support  the entire event I started to feel doubtful. I had never raised partnerships, even for school events and that huge responsibility  scared me. I was afraid that they were going to regret picking me as an OCVP but my co-OCVP for ER and friend reminded me that ‘we are just 21, we are supposed to make mistakes, we definitely have no way of figuring it all out by now ; so take it all slowly and don’t forget to enjoy this because you were selected for a reason’. All these words made a lot more sense to me than trying to figure out everything on my own. AIESEC made me feel as if I’m part of this big family where everyone has each other’s back.

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A shy and timid girl like me stepped out of her comfort zone and embraced what’s out there. As of today being a team leader in the Incoming Global Talent program and a member in the Business Development team, I’m thriving in my AIESEC journey and having the best time of my life. Reading this might be your sign to take that one step ahead in your AIESEC journey and empower others to follow on your path as well.

Authored By,
Chenuli Amarasinghe
International Relations Team Leader,
Incoming Global Talent
AIESEC in University of Colombo

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The place where vision, passion, and leadership transcended boundaries.

LB SUMMIT; The place where vision, passion, and leadership transcended boundaries. 

This year, there was a Leadership Body Summit, a fantastic place where leaders in AIESEC in University of Colombo develop their vision more significant than their circumstances. It was a new experience that those who were in the Leadership Body in previous years could not get. Here, the leaders in AIESEC in University of Colombo for the summer of term 22.23 were very fortunate to witness and experience such an important training session to become better versions of themselves.

The LB summit happened physically at the university premises. The commencement was coloured with a check-in where different functions were mixed up, and the people were divided into 4 groups. The groups were given different fun questions just to get to know each other. After the check-in, the team leaders, managers, and specialists in the same teams got to play a scavenger hunt with a crossword puzzle where teamwork was emphasized. The hints for this puzzle were laid in different places. All the players had to run throughout the university to find the clues. At all these places, the teams were given different challenges, such as the caterpillar walk and doing the Roll Call of AIESEC in University of Colombo to engage and enjoy. 

Then came the time to get the ball rolling. The opening of the summit happened by introducing Facis to the leaders and setting the expectations for the day.

The first session was conducted by Mr.Sohan Wijegunawardane, about the passion one should have. He also mentioned the ‘Ikigai’ technique helping to find one’s pure bliss in life. The entire session was a great help to open the eyes of all the leaders in Central Colombo. Then the next faci, Mr Dehan Vithana started his session with an interesting game for the members to prove how important each and everyone plays in different positions no matter if they are an observer, communicator, or a robot. Then he explained how important it is to take ownership of your life and decisions.

After the lunch break, the Leaders were happily doing back-to-back jives and got energized for the rest of the day. Then, again as in the previous teams, all the teams were engaged in different activities to build their ability to be great team players. 

Then, our third and final faci for the day, Mr.Pasindu Mendis did an amazing session on his AIESEC journey years back. There, leaders got a very interesting and unique thing to do. Every one of them wrote a letter for their future self in another nine months and sealed it in an envelope. How cool is that? Then, the young and brave leaders of AIESEC in University of Colombo got their chance to appreciate and express their feelings in the sharing space. One by one, a few of the AIESECers took the opportunity to express their gratitude and happiness. Mr Pasindu showed the audience how important it is to give out a warm hug to the people they care for. 

The day was coming to an end so was the LB summit. The Executive Board especially got a special token for the whole Leadership Body, which was very cute, marking the LB Summit’s day. Everybody got together with so much love and sang a song together, and at the end, everyone took the final pictures of a memorable day for all the leaders in AIESEC in University of Colombo. 

 

 

 

Authored By,
Thiranja Jayasundara
People Management Team
AIESEC in University of Colombo

 

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AIESEC & SDGs for a Sustainable Planet

“How wonderful is it that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.                 – Anne Frank

When it comes to World War II, the name you see above is one of the most well-known. The chronicle of AIESEC spans 74 years, following the end of this tremendous devastation after 70-85 million people died, leaving one of the most prominent black marks in human history.

Despite the disastrous war, seven young people from seven different countries came together with the goal of fostering cross-cultural understanding among nations. They aspired to reshape the world, one person and one exchange at a time, in order to ensure that there would be no more wars in future generations due to the lack of understanding of diverse cultures.

In well-known sources, the verb “sustain” is defined as “to provide enough of what somebody or something requires in order to survive or exist.” Intending to sustain all living diversity on Earth, the United Nations introduced this prestigious concept of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in 2015 which consists of 17 significant targets as a universal call to action to eradicate poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030. 

AIESEC launched its commitment and contribution to the SDGs, a commitment from young people to make the global project a success. AIESEC has collaborated with UNDP in the Asia Pacific and UN Volunteers in West and East Africa on projects to increase young contributions to the SDGs.

  

By now, AIESEC’s relevance and contribution are more apparent than ever.

Our vision as AIESECers is to strive to achieve peace and fulfillment of humankind’s potential. We focus on strengths and weaknesses, explore our passions and act accordingly while understanding personal values. AIESEC develops and empowers the youth to engage with others to achieve a bigger goal by communicating effectively in diverse environments. 

AIESEC transmits positivity to move forward throughout uncertainty. AIESECers take risks when it is needed. In the face of adversity, this youth community adapts and shows resilience.

AIESECers believe in their ability to make a difference in the world. They are interested in global issues and enjoy taking responsibility for making the world a better place.

So, is it still worthwhile to wait before beginning to improve the world?

 

Authored By,
Apoorwa Amarathunga
Content Writer, CMT
AIESEC in University of Colombo

 

 

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Exploring the World through AIESEC 

Three months have passed, and the backward and awkward Menuka has turned into someone that even her parents can not seem to understand. So this is my experience so far in the AIESEC journey and how I have been exploring a whole new world out of my comfort zone. 

Joining AIESEC was one of the items on my bucket list for 2022, and I am really glad that I was able to fulfill the number one item on the list by joining AIESEC. As a typical backward school girl, I had lots of concerns and doubts regarding myself. I was reluctant to try something new and was focused on achieving good results in academics. In some cases, my teachers put me forward to embrace new challenges and experience something new in life. But now, as an AIESECer, I have been able to view something that was long hidden from my day-to-day life. Facing interviews to get accepted for a certain role and monthly meetings that are not only fun but also professional showed me the importance of having such exposure to enhance myself and make myself ready for future endeavors. 

I was once privileged to join a city tour that was designed for the exchange participants and me being a member of the Outgoing Global Talent program was amazed by the protocols the Incoming Global Volunteer program follows and had a good impression of what is happening there. Being a member and understanding what is happening in Outgoing Global Talent raised my respect for AIESEC as it is responsible for providing internship opportunities for Sri Lankan talents with the necessary help during the process. Continuing international meetings with the power cuts and signal issues too showed the importance of hanging in there even with failures without trying to neglect the responsibilities. 

So far I have failed two interviews in AIESEC although it upset me at first. Now I am ready to polish myself more with experience and failures. And I promised myself that I would prove my worth and give it a try again with much more confidence. 

AIESEC taught me the importance of stepping out of my comfort zone. And that life is colorful when we are facing challenges. Although I will have to face uncertainties, rejections, and doubts on this journey, I think that I will never give up no matter what. Taking one step at a time, I am going to explore the world from a different perspective with the help of AIESEC. 


Authored By,
Menuka Wijesinghe
Member, Outgoing Global Talent
AIESEC in University of Colombo

 

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