Real Leadership

18 February, 2021

On January 15, 2009, US Airways, Airbus A320-214 Flight 1549 with call sign ‘CACTUS 1549′ left  New York City’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA) at around 3.25pm. About 3 minutes into the flight the plane struck a flock of Canada geese. The pilots’ view was filled with the large birds. Passengers and crew heard very loud bangs and saw flames from the engines, followed by silence and an odour of fuel.

Realising that both engines had shut down, the pilot in command; 57-year-old Chesley B. Sullenberger, a former fighter pilot took control, and resorted to an emergency but safe gliding/landing of the plane into the Hudson River. About six minutes later the plane landed/ditched in the Hudson River. The captain calmly opened the cockpit door and gave the evacuation order. The crew guided the passengers out of the plane and all of them 155 passengers on board survived, including one on a wheel chair. None of the passengers sustained serious or major injuries.

Later on, when interviewed, they said what kept their sanity during the ordeal was the composure of the captain. The Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators awarded the crew a Master’s Medal on January 22, 2009. This feat is now popularly referred to as the ‘Miracle of the Hudson’. Many lives were saved because the captain maintained his composure. A leader must never lose his/her cool under pressure; the lives of people sometimes depend on him/her.

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.

Leadership is key in every level and section of society. Leaders don’t seek followers. They passionately follow their purpose, and followers are naturally attracted to people of purpose and passion. Parents are leaders in the home. Teachers are leaders in schools. We need good leadership in the church, marketplace, judiciary, government, media, arts and so on. To lead others, you must first learn to lead yourself well. Your organisation or family will grow and succeed only to the level of your leadership. Leadership is about serving the people you lead so that they will go further and do better than you. The people who influence us are the people who believe in us.

Great leaders all have one thing in common. They know that acquiring and keeping good people is a leader’s most important task,’ writes John Maxwell in his book, ‘Developing the Leaders Around You.’ He urges his readers, ‘Find the best people you can, then develop them into the best leaders they can be.’

Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position. (Brian Tracy)


Author: Yomi is a wordsmith, passionate about books, reading, education, healing and health. She has appeared several times on television and radio; speaking about her passion. She has Master’s degree in Medical Immunology from the College of Medicine, University of London and worked at a postgraduate college of medicine in London for over a decade before pursuing her passion for writing. She is the author of four books.

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