MISSION BY SETH TANDOH
My passion is people and helping them to be their best. I have always been fascinated by how people behave and interact, particularly in groups, and how culture is affected by, and affects, human behaviour. I believe that Ghanaians are smart people trapped in dumb systems. Many of us who travel to other lands, thrive in cultures that are less constraining than ours.
We say we want to move Ghana forward but how can we do this when we constantly teach, emphasise and reward conformity? What we need is an entrepreneurial spirit. Entrepreneurship is all about disrupting the way things are done in order to find more efficient, profitable ways of doing them.
Being of African/European parentage helps me to look at issues of development from many sides. I understand how, in adopting Western models of capitalism and democracy, the modern African is undergoing a quiet but radical identity crisis. Ghanaians have traditionally valued collectivism but these Western models, which include the concept of specialization, emphasize individuality.
How We Got Here
We behave the way we do for valid and logical, historical reasons even if our behaviour is now counter-productive. As Africans, we have tended to stick together in order to face the many hardships that have come our way. We tend to react to events rather than to plan; we focus on the present rather than on the future.
Relationships are so vital to our survival that we do not want to hold prominent people to account for their corruption, even when it affects all of us negatively, because we rely on them in times of trouble.
The Way Forward
How can we move forward and become more future-focused without becoming so individualistic that we lose our African sense of community? I believe that team work, under sound leadership, is the key to Africa’s future. In a team, skilled individuals work together, under sound captain-ship, to attain specific goals. Team members hold each other accountable.
I have spent my life building, often volunteer, teams to undertake varied projects ranging from stage plays through movies and radio programs to building construction in Ghana. These projects involved people from all over the world with different income and educational levels and various skill sets. I discovered what each person was best at and supported him or her to do it as I drew them together in teams with a clear goal in sight.
What We Offer
In our drive to build a new model of leadership for Africa using Ghana as a base, I conduct discrete coaching with top-level executives and counsel people from lower income backgrounds with leadership potential. I also develop training programs that include aspects of anthropology, history, psychology and sociology, tackled in plain language.
In both our professional and personal lives, a new kind of leader who is culturally aware is needed to guide us at this point in our history as we transition from being a collectivist society to a more individualistic one.
We have developed two online platforms to help African leaders, parents and all those who want to help the African to excel at home.
LEAD GHANA seeks to develop culturally sensitive leadership models for organisations that emphasize the need to build teams.
COACH GHANA provides tools for parents, coaches and counsellors to help their wards/clients to discover their God-given life mission.
In my personal life, I have helped raise over 40 non-biological sons as a caretaker parent, a role I describe in my book The Parenting Brief. I believe that the goal of both parenting and leadership should be the same – to bring out the best in our children and our employees to help them fulfil their life mission and to help our organisations to achieve their objectives for the good of all.
Some of my articles: