My role this year as JCI President 2020 is
To BRING STABILITY to the organization.
To INSPIRE CONFIDENCE in members
To ENCOURAGE MEMBERS to create positive impact and to identify the internal capacity that they have.
Mr. Itai Manyere, JCI President 2020, comes from Harare, Zimbabwe. He studied IT at Masvingo Polytechnic. He is the CEO of Blue Dot Inc. and Managing Consultant at BlueDOT MOBILE, and was the 2014 JCI Zimbabwe President.
Q: As the world President of JCI, your term of office is one year. It may be a long or short period of time, depending on how you view it. Within your term of office, how would you create an impact that is sustainable? How would you ensure that the impact you created would be sustainable?
A: One year is a good period for one to lead. What it does is it allows you to step in, do a little but leave a mark for others. Lay eggs and perhaps hedge them. My role this year as JCI President is to bring stability to the organization. 2019 is a different kind of year for the organization. There was a lot of reorganization and recalibrations. 2020 is a chance for us to move an organization to a stable place. And I believe that the stability is suitability for the future. To inspire confidence in members, that indeed we are a positive looking organization that spur the world into positive change. What’s added is to encourage members to create positive impact, carrying out projects that promote sustainable development goals, and to make them more believed into themselves and identify the internal capacity that they have.
Q: JCI was founded in 105 years ago. How do you see the needs of the generation nowadays as opposed to that of the generation back in 20 or more years ago? How their needs have been changing?
A: Yes, their needs have been changing. Now we have an increase in the use of technology. It provides more opportunity for collaboration across the world, but at the same time what it does is it also works against the progress of the human race because people may use it to coordinate things that are counter-productive, and things that threatens human security. So we find ourselves in a place to have young people to utilize technology for social goods but not necessarily for things that actually move us backward as human race. So we still have a lot of work to do.
Q: How do you perceive yourself as a model for young people in the world?
A: In the room, probably someone looks up to me simply because of the title but I always want to be the one who leads without a title. I want to be able to connect and to influence. I want to be the one who can convince even if the title is taken away, and let’s take in the capacity probably that I have and the opportunity that I am given to learn from you. Then we can also impact each other. There are a lot of things that you can learn from each one another in the room. I would like to see more young people step out and lead because of the capacity and the inner drive that they have as young active citizens. That’s my dream. I want to be that kind of person. Without the title, take as much as you can off me and also I can learn as much as I can from my fellow teammates and members across the world.
Q: You are the local president of your country in 2014 so you led at a young age. What are the challenges for young people to lead a chapter because at your young age, as you may have less experience than others or the people are older than you? How did you motivate your members to be leaders and move forward in their JC journey?
A: I believe each and everyone has got a reason why they step out to lead. Number one, let it be seen as it worked with members of the local organization, that your heart is at the right place. That you are there to serve and lead the local organization with any initiatives that you have. You got to carry your vision. What is important as you lead as a local president is that normally you got a lot of pressures. When you say I want to do so many things in order to show others what you are capable of doing. Let’s not let the pressure be on you but to spread the pressure among your work members. Also, as you lead, you got to use the team that you lead with.
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