“Oh, that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!” – Job 19:23

John C. Maxwell describes “The 5 Levels of Leadership” as: (1) Position – people follow because they have to; (2) Permission – people follow because they want to; (3) Production – people follow because of what you have done for the organization; (4) People Development – people follow because of what you have done for them personally; and (5) Pinnacle – people follow because of who you are and what you represent.

Congratulations to C. Trevor Clarke, a friend and former business colleague, for sharing his story and legacy of leadership in a book entitled “My Fourth Job – A Memoir from Barbados to Geneva”.

Economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic disaster presents many challenges. Good leadership must be at the vanguard of this recovery process. Let us imbibe from Trevor’s memoirs and let them inspire and motivate us to recover and continue the journey to the pinnacle of business success. So important is the leadership topic globally that I would encourage Trevor to develop an appropriate audio book for students and businesspersons alike, if he has not done so already. Not only will this facilitate access to the content of his work but, now that we are in the information age, the business model for such a project (low price/high volume) is likely to be a winner. In the meantime, locked down or not, open up the book by engaging Trevor directly at ctrevor@caribsurf.com or visit your favourite bookshop.

Like most young lads in Barbados, C. Trevor Clarke grew up playing cricket and loving school. His leadership skills were first manifested with the Brereton Village cricket team. His academic performance took him from Ebenezer Primary School to Princess Margaret Secondary School and into the illustrious Harrison College, where we first met.

He joined Cable & Wireless (C&W) in 1961 at the bottom rung of the ladder. His bosses soon recognized him as a resource with leadership potential and designed a comprehensive training programme in engineering and management, preparing him for one of the highest executive jobs in Barbados. The rest is history.

In his memoirs, Trevor recalls one of his greatest industrial relations challenges as the telecommunications sector was approaching liberalization in Barbados, about two decades ago. He was charged with significantly reducing costs at the Cable & Wireless companies in Barbados. The staff of these companies were passionately represented by the Barbados Workers’ Union and therefore his team had to do everything right. He therefore assembled internal and external expertise to assist in the successful management of the industrial relations and human relations efforts. This resulted in merger, Barbados External Communications (BET).

In 1977, I was a management consulting pioneer in Barbados, which resulted in the establishment of Systems Caribbean Limited (SCL) in 1984. BET and SCL worked well together in the Caribbean hardware and software spaces, respectively. SCL is still in existence today as Systems Consulting Limited, under different ownership.

Trevor proudly leveraged his engineering training into the field of management, and subsequently used his management training to help resolve diplomatic challenges in Geneva as he led a team of trade policy officers at the Barbados mission there.

His leadership skills and experience culminated with him leading the team of copyright specialists at the World Intellectual Property Organization, even though they all had superior technical knowledge than himself.

Trevor observed and now reinforces the principle that we never stop learning and adjusting.

Grab a copy of his book – for inspiring read for Barbadians and non-Barbadians alike, whether you are in Barbados, Geneva or beyond. Such are the power of these words from a humble gentleman I am proud to call my friend.