Mrs. Paskman made the statement when she spoke at the African Youth Development Forum, organized by Transformation International and the UNESCO Center for Peace, Liberia.
The two-day event, which brought together University Students, Youth groups and Organizations, was held at the Thinkers Village Hotel on the Robertsfield Highway.
Serving as keynote speaker at the opening ceremony, Madam Paskman listed the qualities of a good leader as being able to work with other people, ability to inspire and influence, and organizing people to achieve their goals.
She said it is about having a vision of the possible future that helps to motivate everyone around you.
“A great leader does not achieve things by working alone. A great leader helps everyone around them achieve what is necessary to achieve to build a new future.
You do not need to wait for some distant future. Those amongst you who have leadership potential can help transform your country right now,” she told the youths.
She added, “First and maybe most importantly, a leader does not work in isolation. You can lead people by bullying them into what you want but that will make you a poor leader. A great leader get his or her team to share the same vision of what can be accomplished and then gives the team guidance on how to get there.
“A leader is also a good listener. As a leader, you are not the only person with good ideas. You never know who on your team is going to have the great idea that will help everyone achieve their goals.
“Humility and treating people with respect is important,” she said.
Madam Paskman pointed out that humility earns loyalty.
“Though loyalty is hard to earn, once you have earned it, your team will be willing to go through the most difficult times with you because they believe that in the end you will succeed and you will let them share in your success.
“Now is the time for you to reach out and start on the road to being a great leader. You can work with colleagues and friends to raise political awareness among young people.
“You can take it into your own hands to organize your neighborhood to clean it up or have a crime watch.
“You as young people can also support small business in your community to help them grow. All of these things will lead to a positive future for Liberia. You can be a leader in your country now,” she reassured the young people.
Bringing together 75 participants, UNESCO’s Ambassador to Liberia, Rev. Luther Tarpeh, said the event was organized to bring young people together for the goal of taking on national, community and institutional responsibilities.
He advised the young people to join the front of emerging leaders to make positive changes around the country.
“With togetherness, we can be the leaders Liberia has always wished for. We must put in time, efforts.
“We should not discuss the problems or describe the issues; we must be among those who will find solutions to the many problems facing our country.
Let us as young people, with collaborative efforts, live with the principles of what it takes to be a good leader. We must fight corruption and other negative things our society is faced with,” he added.
The theme of the two-day seminar is “Raising New Leadership for National Transformation.”