Renewal, Revitalisation and Progress Within our own Small Circle of Influence.

Watching SONA 2018 and considering the tough job ahead for Cyril Ramaphosa, we considered what our small, but important commitment could be, as a business, to contribute to the revitalization of this amazing country we live in, South Africa.

We tried to focus on what quick wins we could act upon, right now, that would have an immediate and long term impact. Stephen Covey defines proactive as “ being responsible for our own lives….our behaviour is a function of our decisions, not our conditions. Proactive people focus on issues within their circle of influence. They work on things they can do something about.”

As Stephen Covey said, what could we work on, what could we do something about?CR’s emphasis on development of the youth of this country resulted in a renewed consciousness of a subject that we had always been passionate about, that we had already contributed considerable effort to, even when the laws did not require us to. How do we change the colour landscape of our industry, still lethargic in this critical area of importance?

And it is not enough to employ black youth. We have to be responsible for their development. We have to mentor, coach and train. No matter how busy we are. We have to give them books to read, encourage them to study and contribute if not pay for these costs, we have to give them responsibility and allow them to fail, we have to encourage, to guide, and we have to inspire them to live their dreams, even if this means losing them one day. As they grow, as their skills and capabilities grow, they move into more senior positions and their remuneration increases, or perhaps they even leave and start their own business. This influences not only their lives, but their families lives, their children’s lives, their grandchildren’s lives and in so doing, we create the butterfly effect.

This is something within our businesses’ circle of immediate influence. This is something that we can be proactive about. This is one of the ways we can contribute to renewal and progress in our country.

To quote Hugh Masekela, through Cyril Ramaphosa, “I want to be there when the people start to turn it around.”

Fiona Hitchcock is the Managing Director of Hitchcock Michalski, Strategic Design and Communication Agency, partner of Creative Director Maciek Michalski.


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