Errol Lawson is Birmingham born prolific, motivational speaker, world leader, author, life coach, business consultant and business owner. He is currently offering a number of services to a number of organisations and various secondary schools across the West Midlands offering ‘Bespoke Leadership’ training to young people. Errol is making greater strides to promote leadership locally nationally and globally.
Errol has recently been recognised as one of the 25 Top Ten Leaders in Birmingham and fonts the Young Leaders Academy and The Transatlantic Leadership Network 2020. In addition to his resume of achievements, Errol has recently launched his new book. ‘From the postcode to the Globe‘
Thank you for agreeing to do this Interview Errol. The Chanel-Lee Smile Foundation recognises the work that you currently doing in the community to promote future leaders of tomorrow. Do you consider that you own personal vision has been fulfilled?
No, I believe I am still on the way to fulfilling it. I am blessed to have been involved in some of the projects that I have done, but I still have some way to go to fulfil my dreams. I am happy with the opportunities which I have been presented with. I still have a long way to go with God’s grace.
We congratulate you on the publication of your book ‘From The Postcode To The Globe.’ Tell me how do you overcome limitations to release your potential?
The first thing is to understand what your purpose in life is, get some clarity. I appreciate this may be difficult. Sometimes, people may not understand what their purpose is and sometimes people may float as they may not understand. Pray and ask for direction, read stories of other individuals who have achieved success, go out and try different things. Overtime, we will discover that our unique purpose begins to unfold and become clearer and clearer. As we begin to prepare ourselves, we get a sense of vision. Someone may be in a situation where they are stuck in a dark place or may feel surrounded by their own limitations and obstacles. Others may lack motivation and drive and has a result find it difficult to move forward. For me, my faith and being able to steward others and help them realise their purpose is what has helped me. Others lives may be connected to my success. I have a duty to God and recognise that we have a responsibility to fulfil.
In your experience of working with young people what do you consider to the main obstacles for young people in reaching their dreams?
Young people growing up today lack confidence, self-image, self-concept, self-belief. Many may not believe they are capable of achieving. From my experiences and feedback from young people whenever parents are not involved in young person’s academic success this presents to be a hugh barrier. The children that are doing well in school usually are the ones that have parents involved in their lives
Yellow Smile Day will be held on the 22nd May 2013. We are using this day to look at the life, dreams and vision of Chanel Lee and pay attention to the arts across the West Midlands. Do you think there is a relationship between the arts and self esteem?
Definitely, when I am delivering my workshops, I touch a lot on positive mental attitude. I often ask students about their talents and gifts and a lot of young people will raise their hands, although I have found that the older they get the less and less their hands raise.
Some of the feedback suggests that the arts allow young people to understand who they are. Being an artist is about recognizing who you are, some people sometimes struggle with stating about their personal journey. Through the arts comes self-confidence, self-belief and talent.
How important do you regard the arts and do you consider there is a need to recognise the arts nationally and as part of the education curriculum?
I think creative arts have a very important role, drama and performing arts can impact on self-confidence. Very often young people benefit in the arts as their social skills and soft skills are being developed, however there needs to be a balance between the performing arts and having an academic pathway. There is a need to have ‘Book smarts’.
What has been you greatest barrier to success and how did you overcome this?
Me. My mind-set, attitude, thinking. I overcame it by educating myself, reading, finding mentors, coaches and travelling.
You have spoken in your book about the ‘post code mentality’ and the need to develop leadership and potential. What are your three top tips for success?
- Develop habits, positive daily habits and routine – success is hidden in our daily routine.
- Surrounding one’s self with like-minded people
- Being committed to personal development
What would you say are the biggest barriers facing young people currently?
The lack of parental involvement can affect young people on a number of levels. Also a young person not having a stable home. I have found these to be the issues sometimes which make the most difference from speaking to young people and being around them.
What are the practical steps young people can take in order to pursue leadership?
You have previously spoken about core values being your faith, religion and personal responsibility, when did you realise the importance of having these values?
Around three years ago I began to identify them. To live from my core values is to live from a place of authencity, truth and clarity and not to compromise my values them.
How do you balance success with the need to maintain your core values?
I live from my core values. They act as a measuring stick, a thermometer. You have to take ownership of your personal core values
Have you heard of the Chanel Lee Smile Foundation? How would you encourage people in the community to support the Chanel Lee Smile foundation?
Yes, the whole ethos of the foundation is about encouraging others; we can all learn from that and inspire others. You can be an inspiration to others like Chanel Lee was by encouraging someone and lifting someone up.
What advice would you give to young people who wish to fulfil their potential?
If you want to fulfil your potential you have to get clarity, have a plan and allow yourself to get constant feedback. The road to pursuing your potential is never a straight road; you have to maintain perseverance, stay committed, write vision down and never give up. Everything is possible.
If you would like to hear more from Errol, you can purchase his book ‘From the Postcode to the globe on his website