Vodacom invests in leadership skills

20 June 2011

Twenty-four of Vodacom’s employees from across the continent recently graduated from the Vodacom Advanced Executive Programme (VAEP), which was developed in partnership with Wits Business School to improve talented employees’ leadership, business and innovation skills.

The programme has been running since 2003, and is designed to reward talented employees by offering them the opportunity to improve their skills. The 2010 intake included representatives from four of Vodacom’s African offices, entrenching the company’s commitment to grow leaders across the continent.

Cross-boundary collaboration

The programme is seen as an important development tool, as it gives the company’s top employees the opportunity to visit Vodafone operations around the world to observe global innovative thinking.

“They return to South Africa and develop business case proposals which could be applied to our African operations,” said Vodacom chief human resources officer Mpho Nkeli in a statement last week. “This makes the programme exciting not only for their own development, but the cross-boundary collaboration also carries enormous benefits for Vodacom.

“The aim of the programme is to contribute towards strengthening our business, to actively create an environment for our people to excel beyond our innovation borders and to grow Vodacom leaders across the continent.”

Reputable leadership programmes

According to Vodacom, the VAEP is aligned with a high calibre of reputable leadership programmes and global standards, and has also been enhanced with a Telecoms Mini-MBA, whilst providing a desirably diverse learning approach.

Employees who are invited to join the programme are expected to attend lectures on multiple modules covering everything from finance, accounting and economics. The course offers both theoretical and practical experience.

“One of the most important elements of the course is the Janus Project, where participants analyse an international organisation in an integrated case study and extract learning points of global solutions while remaining locally relevant for future consideration by Vodacom,” said Nkeli.

Identifying and building future leaders

The programme allows Vodacom to always be a step ahead of its competitors by promoting strategic thinking and innovation amongst its employees. The suggestions, research and findings that are developed from this programme are carefully analysed and considered by Vodacom’s executive team.

“The VAEP programme ensures that our employees always strive for excellence and are always looking for ways to be creative, dynamic and innovative,” said Nkeli. “VAEP allows us to retain and attract the best employees in the market.

“The programme also offers us the opportunity to identify and build future leaders of Vodacom.”

SAinfo reporter

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