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Thank you to the 1,400 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 questions!
I hope reading 7 Questions with

Terence Nunis

helps you in your leadership.
Jonno White

Terence Nunis

Name: Terence Nunis

Title: Chief Executive Officer

Organisation: Equinox GEMTZ

Terence Nunis has 20 years’ experience in the finance industry. He is the chief executive of a strategic consultancy, and president of the board of two technology startups.

Terence Nunis

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?

One of the greatest challenges of leadership is accepting that we do not know everything. Exective leaders need a team of generals, not water carriers; people who can stand up and tell them they may be making a mistake. Leaders are only as good as the team they build around themselves.

2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?

When I was younger, I came to the realisation that assertive people got things their way. That was how I became a leader. I had opinions, and I took action, and people followed. As I got older, I understood it to be a responsibility, and not mere personal aggrandisement. Leaders give voice to the voiceless, they move others to common action by making them realise they are part of something greater than their individual selves. Great leaders inspire others to lead. That is, in essence, my evolution as a leader.

3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

I am up by 0400h. That is personal time for my own writings, and refining my thoughts. The work day starts from 0900h. I end by 1900h, unless there are evening meetings and events. I am in bed by midnight, unless I have a call.

4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?

It is difficult to pinpoint a recent or new lesson because part of leadership is learning every day. If anything, the lesson is that we cannot be complacent. We are only as good as our last deal.

5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

It may be controversial, but it would be "The 48 Laws of Power" by Robert Greene. The book is a series of anecdotes on how power is attained and propagated. While it is not perfect, and portions contradict each other, it opens an insight to a worldview. It is not meant to be a manual or textbook; no book on leadership or strategic thinking is.

6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?

A leader is only as good as his leadership team. Great leaders are surrounded by great leaders, whether as mentors or proteges. A good leader is not intimidated by talent. Talent is a resource to be cultivated, nurtured, and embraced.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?

There are more than a few stories. One of them is a deal I sat in when I was very young. Everyone else came in expensive suits, but the man who had the money and paid their salaries, was dressed like he was going for a walk on the beach. That is power, the power to ignore and reshape conventions. To attain that, he built a management team that adhered to conventions, and advanced his vision, while he was free to dress as he pleased and do as he pleased.

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