Mandela 100

Nelson Mandela was born on 18 July 1918.

To remember our greatest leader on the centenary of his birth, we worked with Discovery and the Nelson Mandela Foundation to reflect how his legacy continues to shape individuals making a difference in South Africa and the world.

Discovery chief executive Adrian Gore remembers the talismanic power the imprisoned Mandela held as opposition to apartheid reached fever pitch in the mid-1980s. As a young student then, Gore recalls being touched by the power of Madiba, even though images of Mandela and even the sound of his voice had been banned in the country for almost two decades.

Gore speaks of meeting Mandela years later, and, like so many others, being physically overwhelmed by the man’s simple presence and moral stature.

He also tells us of being profoundly moved by what Mandela told him that day:

He told me something that I believed then, and I strongly, strongly believe now: that the power of leadership is about hope, giving people a sense of where you are heading to, giving them hope about the future.”
Adrian Gore

Gore described Mandela’s unique ability to ‘turn leadership on its head’, to use ‘soft power’ rooted in his own humility, integrity and sense of purpose rather than the coercion and domination to bring people together, as his greatest legacy, a message to all the world’s leaders.

At T+W we tell great stories. This is surely one of the greatest.