The Fifth MTN Business World Breakfast Conference saw four of Ghana’s top business leaders deliberate on the theme “How to be an effective leader in business”.

The well attended event saw Jude Bucknor of Bucknor and Associates, Prince Kofi Amoabeng of UT Bank, Michael Ikpoki of MTN Ghana and Kofi Amoah of Progeny Ventures share their views on issues of leadership such as  what makes one an effective leader, how leaders are made and the challenges to business leadership.

Mr Bucknor said leaders must uphold their values, even at the risk of losing some opportunities if they are to be successful. Mr Ikpoki said it was important for leaders to be authentic as a critical ingredient of effective leadership. Mr Amoah advised businesses to develop a culture of mentorship and performance to groom the next generation of leaders. Mr Amoabeng pointed to social pressures from families and the community as some of the factors that prevent effective leadership and advised that these pressures be resisted in order for busineses to thrive. While all the panellists agreed that leadership was critical to the growth of business, they shared divergent views on how leaders are made.

Mr Amoabeng held the view that a leader was the sum of hits experiences and that the right experiences created a good leader, while Mr Ikpoki said that leadership was developed over a period. For his part Mr Bucknor said leaders were born but it was a grain that had to nurtured while Mr Amoah was of the view that a combination of nature and nurture went into forming a great leader.

In answer to a question during the spirited interactive session, moderated by Kafui Dei and David Ampofo, the panellists displayed their commitment to gender equality in the workplace and called for policies to ensure that women have equal opportunities in business.

A business card raffle saw some lucky participants win Blackberry phones, an ipad and a return ticket to London on Virgin Atlantic. The conference was the fifth to be held in the series and is fast becoming the premier event for business networking and deliberation in the country. The next event will be held in October.