This week on the Top Women podcast, Topco CEO, Ralf Fletcher is in conversation with Leila Fourie, who has held the position of CEO at the JSE since October 2019.

With a career that spans more than 25 years, Leila has worked in the capital markets, payment systems, consulting, investment banking and retail banking. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge not only in the realm of business but also on an interpersonal level and uses her experience, both locally and globally, to implement new strategies in all of her roles, making sure to stay up to date with worldwide trends.

On this week’s engrossing podcast, Leila discusses how our roots and experiences are what shape us and how we, as Africans, are in a unique position at this time, where there is much space for us to do good. She also considers the way we need to approach leadership roles in order to achieve optimal success and the way that technology advancement is moving in today’s rapidly-evolving world.

Key takeaways to listen out for in this podcast

1. Often our careers, achievements and failures are a culmination of our upbringing and the stories we ourselves have to tell – our approach to life is rooted in the lessons we’ve learned from those who came before us

2. Sometimes enquiry is more powerful than advocacy, and in the same sense, sometimes listening is more powerful than telling

3. Being a business woman is a privilege in a society where so many women have either not had the opportunity for education or the opportunity to build their careers

4. An advantage that Africa and emerging markets have is that we are able to leap frog legacy technology – we have a very real opportunity to attract international investments

5. Technology advancement really comes down to the culture that leaders create to enable it

Leila’s business career spans more than 25 years working in consulting, investment banking, retail banking and capital markets. Her diverse experience has been acquired in some of South Africa’s leading companies in these fields, including Accenture, Standard Bank and the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Through the course of her career, Leila has held senior executive positions and directorships of global portfolios and local and U.S. boards; her board roles have included chairperson, non-executive director, executive director and managing director. Over the course of her career, Leila has gained experience in turnarounds; set up of two new Greenfields organisations; established new global and local divisions within a multi-national organisation; launched new products; established and closed down joint ventures; advocated on national policy matters; and maintained existing revenue producing and support functions. Leila holds a Ph.D in Economic & Financial Sciences.

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