Today I hand over the editorial leadership of this magazine to a great team; one that I have been nurturing in readiness for this day. This is the best New Year gift to myself. As Parents turns 30 later this year, it is time for me to hand over this responsibility to a younger team who will steward it to the next level.
Over the past two years, I have given away more and more of my editorial responsibilities so that I can have more opportunity to better task myself with the things that I really love to do – serving the communities in various development NGOs and institutions is one of them. Now, with an almost complete hand-over of my greatest responsibility in this organisation, hopefully I will have time to start writing that book I have procrastinated over for a long time.
My new team is truly a winning team. Led by Lily Ronoh as your new editor who is deputised by Esther Kiragu and under them Esther Akello and Henry Kahara, I have no doubt they will continue on the transformational path this magazine has taken, to ensure it is serving today’s families in the best way possible. Sure, they will need my input from time to time, but I’m not the one doing the work, save for sharing events in my life with you on this column.
Borrowing a leaf from Teddy Roosevelt, 26th U.S. President, “The best leader is the one who has sense enough to pick good men and women to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling while they do it,” I intend to let the team get on with the job.
Good leaders know that more is accomplished by constantly empowering their team members to fulfill the mission of the organisation. I have guided this team and now have given them a free hand to experiment with their new insight and understanding of what they have learnt from me. I want them to ‘try their wings’, as they assume their new roles.
Motivation, encouragement, inspiration, and support are the weapons of the greatest generals. They don’t rigidly manage their troops. Instead, they motivate them to achieve the mission. Lily and team, I remain your general – take on the battle ahead.
Let me now introduce you to the new team. Lily Ronoh, a wife and mother of one, has been the revise editor since December 2014. Lily holds a Master of Arts degree in Linguistics and worked as an English teacher before joining the Parents team. Lily exemplifies the greatest lesson in leadership – seen more and heard less. She does not just preach about excellence, but practices it. Having watched her work with me, the qualities I desire in a strong team are modelled in her own life. She has a good work ethic, is punctual and diligent. She is efficient. She keeps her word and finishes any job she starts. She is a beautiful and warm human being who cares deeply about her family and values friendships. That’s your new editor and you will sure love her.
Esther Kiragu has been with Parents since February 2012 as the editorial coordinator. She holds a Masters of Arts degree in communication studies. Esther enjoys the respect of the entire Parents team because she demonstrates excellence in all aspects of her life. She is a great writer who always seeks to keep her standards very high because she knows her teammates look up to her. She shares knowledge and experience with her teammates by her actions as well as her words. To Esther, nothing is impossible.
Esther Akello, a mother of one and a graduate of Daystar University in communications has been a staff writer with Parents since November 2014. Esther is a great team player and a valued member of this team. Joining this month will be Henry Kahara to complete the team. I am so blessed to work with such resourceful and pleasant people.
In all my working life, one of the top most things always in mind is how my co-workers will remember me when I am no longer working with them. In other words, what legacy do I leave at every workplace I set foot in? I take great pride in everything I do and for me, work has never been something you do to pay bills or pass time until retirement. Every assignment I take on, whether paid for or voluntary, matters. I give it my best and respect and love those who work with me in whatever capacity. Next to my family, my co-workers are probably the people I spend the most time with. Leaving a legacy of excellence and love is a nice way to be remembered, but more importantly, it gives you a past you can reminisce about without regrets.
To this team, I have delegated with full instructions. I have delegated with full empowerment. I have delegated with total encouragement. I expect them to start building their own legacy. And to our readers, continue to support and encourage them.
Happy New Year everyone!