Generation Unlimited is a global multi-sector partnership to meet the urgent need for expanded education, training and employment opportunities for young people, aged 10 to 24, on an unprecedented scale. To learn more, visit generationunlimited.org.
There is no alternative to teaching leadership skills at the grassroots level. That is why Lal Sabuj Society, the organisation I created in 2015, recently hosted the workshop 'Learn to Lead' to develop leadership skills. 45 students participated in this session in Barishal city, Bangladesh. I'd like to share 5 of the issues and topics we discussed, so you can become an effective leader too!
1️⃣ Take care of your mental health: Yes, you need to have good physical health, but mental fitness matters too! We do not always care about our mental health as we do with our physical health. But a good organizer also needs to be mentally healthy. 1 out of every 7 people in Bangladesh suffers from mental problems. It's good to know some ways to stay mentally healthy. For example, spend quality time with people you love, like your family, listen to people and try to understand them. Respect others and share those things that are hurting you to a person you trust. Make enough time to do what you love, and sleep enough time (7 to 9 hours).
2️⃣ Communication skills: a volunteer has to become proficient in communicating well with others. You have to listen to other people. We often become more interested in telling people than listening to them. That's not fair at all. Others should listen carefully.
Communication means connecting with others. It can be through email, social media, phone calls or physically. Wherever the person understands, he / she can connect with him / her conveniently. For that reason I have to keep that in mind when I am talking and what I am saying. Keeping a smile on your face also plays an important role in communication.
3️⃣ Time management: An organizer should always be careful about time, so other people's time is not wasted and the work is not disrupted. Make a list of the important tasks you have to do and the time you are assigning to them. There are various time management apps that can be used to get good results.
4️⃣ Positive Thinking: often people talk about their own actions, problems or failures in the past or talk negatively about others. This should not be done. You have to try to see everything as positively as possible. Without repeatedly thinking negatively about the events that have happened before. If you do not focus on the positive, many things can cause problems in the organization. Working can cause frustration sometimes, but negative thinking is not an option. You should try to boost self-esteem with yourself and colleagues.
5️⃣ Learn about Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): Young organizers need to have a good knowledge about SDGs if they want to support their communities. The role of young people is very important in meeting the Sustainable Development five goals, no matter how small you think your actions are.
Even at home, many young people can work to support SDGs. For example, sharing posts on climate change, women's rights, etc. in social media. Or taking a bath with less water, eating less fish or meat, using solar panels at home if possible, eliminating polyethylene and plastic, donating what is not used anymore or cycling instead of using a car.
Tahsin Uddin, 21, Bangladesh, is a member of the Generation Unlimited Young People’s Action Team. He empowers young people in his community to tackle climate change and promote children’s rights through the “Lal Sabuj Society” he created in 2015. At the age of 12, Tahsin started publishing a monthly newspaper named “The Monthly Lal Sabuj” to promote children’s creativity as well as write on the impact of climate change on children in his community. Follow Generation Unlimited on Instagram, Youtube and Twitter.