To Excel as a Leader, DG Rudy of RID 3770 Emphasizes the Importance of Knowing Your “Why”

By Marianick Villegas | Posted on February 17, 2024

The journey to becoming a long-time Rotaractor or Rotarian becomes easy once you know your “why.” A member of Rotary for almost a decade, District Governor Rodolfo “Rudy” Enriquez started on January 2, 2014, and has since been actively participating in the projects of the Rotary.

Having found excitement in service and fellowship in Rotary, other aspects of being a Rotarian led DG Rudy to enjoy his membership. A provider of opportunities and rewarding experiences, Rotary gave him a strong sense of purpose, which allowed him to grow and get self-fulfillment. He finds service to others, fellowship and camaraderie, ethical values, and leadership development as rewarding experiences gained from fully immersing in Rotary. 

Service to others 

“The motto of Rotary is “Service above Self.” There are endless opportunities in helping the community, making a lasting impact, and creating hope for the world. It is an altruistic act, a two-way street in which the more you feed and nurture acts of kindness, you are rewarded with greater joy and satisfaction.”

Aligned with the theme “ Create HOPE IN THE WORLD” Rotary District 3770, launched  a kick of project on July 1, 2023, the planting of giant bamboo and mangrove trees to support the environmental protection.

Fellowship and camaraderie 

“Rotary gives you a chance to build strong personal and professional relationships. You connect with people who are as passionate about making a difference as you are, making lasting friendships and opening up valuable networking possibilities.”

Ethical Values

“In Rotary, ethical conduct and the “Four-Way Test” are given a lot of importance. Being part of a group that values honesty and good behavior can be really rewarding for people who share these values.”

Leadership Development

“In Rotary, you get chances to step up as a leader in your club and even in bigger district or global projects. This is a great way to improve your leadership abilities and get hands-on experience in planning and running projects.”

Besides his experiences in Rotary, DG Rudy also shared valuable advice to the members and leaders in Rotaract Clubs. He emphazised knowing your “why,” continuous learning and effective communication to sustain good working relationship between Rotarians and Rotaractors. 

Rotary-Rotaract Relationship

As a leader who creates hope for the world, what do you think are the ideal characteristics of a Rotarian should a Rotaractor emulate?

To be a leader who creates hope for the world, you must first carry in you the kind of hope you want to share with other people. And to be able nourish this hope, a leader must have these characteristics:

Compassion and empathy – A good Rotarian shows empathy towards the struggles of other people. One must show compassion and the willingness to understand and address the needs of their community. A good leader, regardless of his organization, must be a prime example in treating all individuals with equality, kindness, and respect. 

Continuous learning – Former US President John F. Kennedy once said, “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” 

A good leader strives to gain knowledge every day. It does not have to scientific or mathematical. Learning may also be in the form of acquiring knowledge about the ins and outs of life that are not taught in schools or textbooks, learning traditions and norms in communities, and even by understanding simple quirks and features of the people around us.

Effective and efficient communicator – You must be able effective and efficiently exchange thoughts and knowledge with your peers. This is very important in order to properly convey your message that will be clearly received and understood because how do you create hope if you do not understand one another?

Sense of leadership – I once read a passage from John Maxwell’s book which says, “Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another.” 

It is very important that a Rotaractor possess this core characteristic because this is the very foundation to becoming an effective leader and a responsible citizen.

These are only a few of the characteristics that I consider non-negotiables for all Rotarians and Rotaractors. I also think that in this noble pursuit, you must not lose yourself and your individual character. Genuine people make an even more genuine society.

What are some ways that Rotarians and Rotaractors can work together effectively?

Mentorship will be the first step. On our part as Rotarians, we can provide valuable knowledge to help the Rotaractors get a better understanding of our goals. It will also be a good move to conduct workshops or seminars to hone your skills and promote professional development among the Rotaractors and at the same time, it will be a great learning experience for the Rotarians to share skills with the younger generation. By combining the experience of the Rotarians and the innovative insights of the Rotaractors, I am confident that we will be able to make deep-rooted and beneficial change.

How will you strengthen the relationship between Rotary Clubs and their sponsoring Rotaract Clubs? How can you encourage Rotarians and Rotaractors to form good working relationships?

We must maintain an open and clear communication channel. This may be in the form of correspondences, meetings, workshops, or planning events. We can also conduct less formal events such as family outings or team building. Building a strong working relationship does not happen overnight. It takes time and constant exchange of ideas so as long as there is the desire for development, it will be easy for the Rotarians and Rotactors to connect.

Rotaract Advice

In Rotary, networking, collaboration, and cooperation are essential. What advice would you give to Rotaract Clubs that wish to expand their network for better project implementation?

Networking is a mutual concession. It is not just about what others can give you but also what you can offer or contribute. You must hone your expertise and offer to share it with other organizations. Also, you must exert extra effort in reaching out for potential partnerships –nothing beats a hard-earned connection. Utilize the platforms provided by technology and tap into your creative and innovative side.

However, as much as we want to see you flourish on your own feet, the Rotarians will always be right behind you for guidance and help. We could introduce you to certain individuals and organizations that can provide your projects’ needs.

What will you suggest to the Rotaractors to increase their donation to the Rotary Foundation and End Polio?

The most important thing is to educate and make aware the Rotaractors the initiatives, purposes and the global impact of the End Polio campaign. People are more inclined to donate and lend a hand if they are aware of how far assistance can go and how much it can do. 

Encouraging the members to give monthly donations no matter how small is another great way to increase funds. Small amounts can accumulate over time and it will not be financially straining.

It will also be a wise idea to utilize social media to raise awareness that can be seen by the target audience. In this age of technology, social media has been the one of the most prominent platforms in promotions by means of sharing visuals that are relatable and shareable. 

What do you think inspires Rotaractors to become Rotarians? How will you influence Rotaractors to continue their leadership journey as Rotarians?

The shift from being a Rotaractor to a Rotarian is frequently motivated by a combination of individual development, the aspiration to create lasting change, and a profound alignment with Rotary’s values and mission.

To encourage a seamless transition for Rotaractors, Rotary Clubs can highlight the potential for personal and professional development and broad opportunities and chances to contribute to meaningful projects as they become Rotarians. Underlining the common values shared by Rotaract and Rotary, along with providing mentorship during this significant period, can provide an extra push for Rotaractors to embrace their upcoming leadership roles within the Rotary community.

What advice will you leave to the young leaders who are just starting their journey as part of Rotary International? This question applies to both dual members and newly inducted Rotaractors.

To you, young leaders, I hope that you embrace learning and have it etched in your hearts. Your willingness to continuously improve living conditions and standards will be your fuel to create hope in the world. You must never lose yourself but at the same time, be open to positive changes and personal growth. Keep a healthy balance to save your energy and well-being. It will also greatly help you to build relationships among your fellow Rotaractors, Rotarians, and members of your community. Stay grounded, open-minded, and passionate. The journey will not always be full of sunshine. You will be met with problems along the way but as long as you keep your head above water and your eyes on your goals, you will be able to navigate through it. 

Always remember your “why”. This is to remind you of why you started this journey and to keep you motivated to go forward. Put our motto in your hearts, “Service above Self.” 

What you do will be for the benefit of the community and the world. Do not let the wind put out the flame of your desire to serve and help the less fortunate. Stick with people who will help you in this journey – you family, friends, and fellow Rotaractors. 

And one more thing, do not forget to give yourself a tap on your shoulder from time to time. Celebrate the person you have become and the positive impact you are making. I will be looking forward for the things you can do and the great positive changes you will make.

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