PCL chief challenges insurers on leadership

Press Corporation Limited (PCL) group chief executive officer Dr Matthews Chikaonda on Saturday challenged insurers in Malawi to ensure that they are good leaders in their various workstations.

He said good leaders are accountable to the people they serve.

Chikaonda, whose conglomerate is listed on the Malawi Stock Exchange, was speaking in Malawi’s commercial city, Blantyre, during the Insurance Institute of Malawi (IIM) Annual Charter Dinner.

He said good leaders must leave vibrant institutions when they walk out.

“Very beautiful lessons here for politicians that there is life after leadership,” said Chikaonda.

He said some people are born with leadership traits, but that even those traits need to be natured and developed.

“I don’t think I am going to mention something a little bit controversial here. I don’t think there can be a right leader for every situation. There are a lot of situational factors that come with leadership. In other words, there is no ideal leader.

“Give me a situation and let us look at it and all sorts of leaders will arise. Even in our organisations, we need to find leaders at all levels of the organisation depending on what is going on, where and what time,” said Chikaonda.

He noted that if leaders find themselves sucked into the nitty-gritty of what is going on around them, then they are managers not leaders.

“A leader is a big picture person. Look at the bigger picture. How do you move from point A to B and leave the nitty-gritty for managers to do?” said Chikaonda.

During the function, IIM also ushered in a new president Elias Chipungu of United General Insurance (UGI) to replace Diana Kambale who led the group for a year.

Kambale thanked the country’s insurers for the support rendered to her and her team during her tenure.

She said during her reign, IIM achieved a lot of things, including uplifting the status of insurance as a career of choice for students.

Chipungu said he will work to take IIM to the next level.

During the same event, IIM also presented awards to best qualifying students in the certificate, diploma and advanced diploma in insurance examinations.

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