Enterprises UP taking on the challenges facing women in leadership

Posted on August 12, 2019

Studies show that only 5% of CEOs in Africa are women. Despite women making up the majority of the population of South Africa, they are still largely underrepresented in the upper echelons of leadership. With gender inequality still prevalent in the workplace, the need has never been greater to create, develop and foster a culture of potent and influential female leaders.

Enterprises University of Pretoria (Enterprises UP) has developed a Women in Leadership Programme as a concerted effort to give female leaders the tools they need to stand out as worthy contenders for management roles within their organisations.

The programme was created to address and build the leadership and management competencies of female managers, allowing them to thrive in a business world plagued by gender equity challenges. It also provides delegates with an opportunity to share perspectives, while learning through networking with women leaders from various sectors of business.

The latest intake of the programme started classes on 5 August and saw a delegation of diverse female leaders from The Presidency. This highly interactive programme is led by Dr Melodi Botha who is passionate about the programme’s ability to create dynamic, self-aware female leaders.

“We have a responsibility to educate and train future leaders. In the past, women didn’t get the opportunity to be in leadership positions. Now that we have these prospects, some women still lack the skills to function optimally in leadership roles. Through this programme, we aim to give women new tools and strategies to be dynamic managers. We will also teach them that there are varying leadership styles necessitated by unique scenarios that they will face,” said Dr Botha.

Dr Botha was the 2006 winner of the Best Paper at the International Entrepreneurship Conference, while this programme is presented by all-women lecturers. Her profound understanding of the struggles facing women in the business world led her to create and champion the Women Entrepreneurship Programme (WEP) at UP. WEP has culminated in the capacitation of over 150 female entrepreneurs. A National Research Foundation C-rated scientist, Dr Botha has a sterling record in the research and practice of business management. In addition to her professional research, she has contributed to numerous international articles and conference papers.

With unlimited access to some of the greatest minds from UP, Enterprises UP has the privilege to work with many such outstanding female researchers and practitioners across a multitude of industry fields.

Click here to view the range of research and advisory services that are on offer at Enterprises UP.

- Author Khensani Mahlangu

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