Dr Yap (on stage) speaking on leadership to a packed audience at the university.
TO be an effective and credible leader, one must hold on to the values of integrity, said Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Dr Mary Yap to a packed room of 300 students at City University, Petaling Jaya.
Dr Yap was speaking at the varsity’s eighth Distinguished Speakers Series where she presented a talk tittled “Leadership in Practice: D.E.F.F.R.A.C”.
The speakers series started in 2015 and is aimed at encouraging the students and staff of the varsity to interact with the outside world.
Dr Yap said: “A leader is a person who has integrity and the two important attributes of being a leader of integrity is sincerity and honesty.”
She shared that as a school principal, she allowed her teachers and staff to give critical comments on her leadership.
“If I were to advise or comment on my teachers’ or staff behaviour, why can’t they comment or advise me?
“Listening is very important,” she said, adding that there are different levels of leadership and that students must not think of leaders as those holding top positions.
On DEFFRAAC, Dr Yap said it is important to delegate work among one another.
However, it is not useful if a person merely delegates without empowering the other.
“When you empower, it means you are instilling the element of trust in your team members.
Dr Yap said the double “F” in DEFFRAAC is crucial.
“Most institutions fail because they miss the follow up and follow through.
“As a leader, you have to follow up and follow through,” she said.
Speaking passionately, Dr Yap said reflection is an important practice whereby one has to find lessons learnt upon participating in an activity.
“Reflecting without follow up action is not going to be useful.
“You have to act to find solutions to address the weaknesses that you have identified,” she said, adding that an effective leader needs to have effective communication.
She said students are the future of the country and commended City University for exposing its students to such talks.