Passion matters the most


By Patrick Achitabwino:

The key differentiator in achievers and non-achievers is passion. People that have great passion in what they do are always hungry for success. They do not accept even any contrary idea to swerve them off the road they have taken.

When William Kamkwamba was building a windmill, our traditional thinking was that he was mad. When a Dowa uneducated man decided to build a helicopter, we bombarded him with negative sentiments.


They achieved their dreams because they never looked back, they had passion. Les Brown was right when he said: “Never let anybody’s opinion of you become your reality.”

Nick Vujicic, a man without arms and legs, states: “Never let the values of the truth of your life to be devalued.”

Malawi has people with great talents, wonderful education and vision, but we are achieving so little because we lack passion, which is a catalyst for pushing us forward. If we take a look at the dreams we have had just in the past seven days, we will realise that we miss great opportunities.


We dream but do not actualise the dreams. We lack the spark, we lack the passion, and we lack the determination. At the end, we succumb to the belief that we cannot make it.

Without passion there is no success. We ride Axa buses and we treasure them and admire Mark Katsonga, the entrepreneur. But deep inside the empire of his success are moments of pain that may have taken him completely off the mark if he did not have the passion to drive on.

It is passion that reinforces courage. It is passion that makes a man look at a lion in the face and be optimistic to fight the animal and win. Passion dispels off any monstrous thinking that stands in the way of our success.

Organisations that are stagnating are because they have the leadership and followership that has no passion in the objectives and strategic direction of the company.

In a normal sense, such organisations have in them a team of fortune-seekers whose main interest is salary at the end of the month and benefits accrued.

Passionate leadership drives employees to the edge of success. Organisations that are filled with passionate staff are visible through their business undertakings – they do not want to lose business, they act quickly, they are not time restricted.

They immediately respond to emails at supersonic speed. They have the courage to make decisions and can wait no more. We are now in a challenging world where we do not have the luxury of time.

We are failing because, though we have education and qualifications, we lack the passion to move forward.

Dr Ndione Chauluka once pointed out that Malawi has so many well-trained people who are not smart enough to start their own businesses based on what they know. His point is that such people are just interested in getting employed and, yet, in the eyes of the general public, they are technocrats.

It is not surprising, therefore, that in the book Capitalist Nigger, Chika Onyeani opines that Africans are well-educated individuals but we have nothing to show for our knowledge except to put qualifications after our names.

Emmanuel Chinunda concurs: “We are very much interested in being known as well educated.”

We are victims of lack of passion. Prof Patrick Lumumba says: “we have paper qualifications that do not match our character.”

Lack of passion is when economists give commentary on economic developments but refuse to take tangible steps to improve the situation.

Lack of passion is when accountants notice fraud and corruption but do nothing to stop the malice. They will even go ahead and process fraudulent allowances.

Lack of passion is when lawyers swindle clients.

Lack of passion is when medical personnel steal drugs and other necessities for personal gain.

Lack of passion is when traffic police officers let un-roadworthy vehicles keep on pounding our streets in exchange of money.

Lack of passion is when procurement is marred by khaki envelops.

People that have passion do things in the straight order. People that are passionate towards national development hate corruption and abuse of resources and take cognisance of the fact that the needs of the country are superior to their personal needs.

Passion drives people to challenge the way things are.

Writing books is not lucrative business in Malawi, but we still need to write for our sake and for the sake of the future.

It is passion that saw Emmanuel Chinunda writing two books on leadership and it took courage to embark on launching them.

Whatever your dream, add a bit of grains of the salt of passion to it. There is no success without passion.

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