Think about ‘nicodemusly’ bettering yourself

Community leadership

THE call to community leadership exposes leaders to a wide range of scenarios, cases and contexts.

Community leaders facilitate dialogue, provide guidance, bridge gaps and advocate for reform in various sectors of life.

Doing that requires certain levels of knowledge, exposure and competencies.

As a result, it is wise for community leaders to have a strong desire to learn new things.

While some leaders have a desire to learn, it is unfortunate that they are either too busy or for whatever reason, believe that pursuing knowledge acquisition activities openly may jeopardise their positions and reputation in society.

The story of Nicodemus

In Chapter 3 of the Book of John in the Holy Bible, a story is told of Nicodemus the tax collector and an accomplished community leader who went to see Jesus — the great teacher — during the night.

A couple of reasons may explain why Nicodemus went to see the great teacher during the night.

Being a man who wielded significant religious, social and political power, he could probably be quite busy during the day.

At worst, as an accomplished community leader it may have been sort of difficult for him to admit ignorance or pursue knowledge acquisition in daylight.

Whether it is due to a busy schedule, arrogance or any other factor, neglecting self-improvement endeavours is detrimental to oneself.

Fortunately, in this modern era, there are many ways of bettering one self.

Enrol for an online course

The global pandemic and its aftermath have fundamentally changed the way the world operates.

The COVID-19 pandemic contributed to the rapid uptake of e-commerce. Increasingly, many things can be done online and education has not been left out.

Many genuine courses — some for free and others paid for —are available online.

Most of the time, these courses are beneficial to one’s personal development.

These could offer career advancement and even provide guidance towards one’s success through creating more opportunities for them.

Enrolling for online courses gives you the liberty to do whatever you want, whenever you are free and however you want to do it.

Furthermore, through online courses, you may be able to meet or work with learners from all over the globe.

This gives you the opportunity to network with different types of people from different cultures, races, environments, among others.


Effective leadership requires effective “readership” and reading is something you can do during any time of the day.

Reading gives leaders knowledge and ideas. When you read, you have somewhere to start from.

Reading increases your imagination and creativity. You become more receptive to fresh options.

Reading allows you to learn from the experiences of others. No leader can amass all the knowledge and consider all the possibilities on their own.

Reading allows you to peer into the thoughts of previous leaders and learn from both their failures and accomplishments.

Night classes

Even though e-learning is being adopted quickly, enrolling for night classes is still a way for leaders to learn new things and improve their skills.

Several colleges, polytechnics and universities in Zimbabwe do offer exciting courses that community leaders may benefit from.

Taking evening classes with other adult students — those with experience in the working world — can be of tremendous benefit.

Fellow students in your evening classes may have life experiences that are different from but relevant to your own, and you can benefit from their insights or those of course facilitators.

No matter how busy your schedule is or can be, you should never underestimate the importance of self-improvement and personal development.

Not only does personal development open new doors professionally, but also helps you to break through other personal barriers and enhance your leadership capabilities in your community.

Brighton Taruberekera is a political and development consultant, writer and researcher. He can be contacted on 0778 992 045/[email protected]. He writes here in his personal capacity.

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