#LLABlog – 5 Important Lessons From Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr Ted Talk


Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr

Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr is the Mayor of Freetown in Sierra Leone. She is a finance professional with over 25 years of experience in strategic planning, risk management, and project management in the public and private sectors.

She has held senior management roles providing risk management, regulatory and corporate governance consulting services to blue-chip clients in the UK financial services industry. She was the Investment Director of IDEA, owners, and developers of the Hilton Freetown Cape Sierra Hotel.

In 1999, she co-founded the Sierra Leone War Trust (SLWT) which continues to support disadvantaged children and young people in Sierra Leone. She remains actively involved with SLWT and is a member of the Board of Trustees.

Aki-Sawyerr served as the Delivery Team Lead for the President’s Recovery Priorities – the second phase of a multi-stakeholder program to drive sustainable socio-economic recovery in Sierra Leone post-Ebola. She led the design and implementation of an innovative approach to public service delivery that facilitated, coordinated and supported the activities of eleven Ministries, Departments and Agencies in seven priority sectors to achieve specific targets over 15 months.

Yvonne is passionate about the development of Sierra Leone. She is a Chartered Accountant and holds an MSc in Politics of the World Economy (London School of Economics) and a BSc Hons in Economics (Fourah Bay College).

In her Ted Talk titled “How to turn your dissatisfaction into action”, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr mentioned some key lessons in igniting change in our lives and community.

Here are the 5 important lessons to be learnt from Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr Ted Talk;

  • The power of dissatisfaction works when you know that things can be done better and it works when you decide to take the risk to bring about that change. If we can unite behind the power of dissatisfaction the world will be a better place.
  • Our collective sense of dissatisfaction and an unacceptable status quo will keep us focused on getting things done.
  • A dose of dissatisfaction can birth change and possibilities. Ask yourself continually, “What should could I be doing to create the necessary change in my community.
  • Sometimes we have a niggly feeling about things, we are not happy about the way things are going, we are dissatisfied and we feel frustrated. We can change that negative feeling into a positive if we believe that things can be better, then you have the option to do something rather than to do nothing.
  • The scale and circumstances of our situation are different but for each of us we all have one thing in common, we can take risks to make a difference.

This blog is an excerpt of Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr Ted Talk.

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