Since our arrival in the country in 2002, we have been able to meet several chiefs from around Zambia. Not every foreign visitor to Zambia is able to make personal contact with these traditional rulers, let alone become well acquainted with them.
In meeting with these chiefs we found that many chiefs become leaders over thousands of people without having any training for this enormous task. They may have gone through life as a bank accountant or shop manager before being called upon to take on the responsibilities of the chief. So we saw a need to offer leadership classes specifically designed for traditional rulers and their unique needs.
In 2005 we began work on a leadership course, which we eventually named “The Chief’s Leadership Handbook”. Chiefs come to our facility and proceed through the material, which they say is a real help to them. Of course, we are careful to respect their culture and traditions while still staying true to our convictions and beliefs.
When meeting with these traditional rulers, we also find out what some of their other needs may be and try to assist them by making practical suggestions or pointing them in the right direction so they can find the help they need. For example, one chief was having difficulty with another chief moving in on his land. Tom was able to find satellite photos and print them out so the chief could use them with his report to assist the investigation. Tom has also put together idea sheets for improving on tourist attractions and ways to bring development into their areas.