Dionne Kerr, CEO of Siyakha Consulting speaks about transformation in South Africa
WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE KEY CHALLENGE FOR
TRANSFORMATION IN YOUR SECTOR?
Despite South Africa’s strong economic and political foundations, the country suffers from severe income inequality, poverty, unemployment and a lack of relevant job skills among historically disadvantaged populations. These deficits threaten the country’s stability and its potential to foster growth and investment in the region.
BEE is often debated as a political tool more than it is seen as a positive proactive attempt to equalise society. The over-complicated structures and heightened expense of implementation mean that people’s sentiment is usually to purely seek compliance. This is exacerbated by the consulting approach, which is typically centred around a scorecard.
When South Africans sincerely start to be passionate about buying local goods and services, creating local jobs and investing back into this economy then we can achieve economic growth.
HOW DO THE COMPANY’S CSI PROJECTS CONTRIBUTE TO THE BUSINESS AS A WHOLE?
Our situation is quite unique in that we implement development programmes for our clients. This includes supplier excellence programmes where we are raising the governance, certification and quality standards of Black suppliers by 25% per quarter based on our current programmes. We have projects in water
preservation and agricultural development.
We are focused on creating jobs and opportunities for marginalised people. We do door-to-door market research in townships to drive health and financial wellness and personal and home hygiene among other things. We are also setting up black-owned manufacturing businesses each month and our supplier development programmes cover digital skills, industrial activities, businesses who are using science to develop innovative solutions and services companies with their sights set on growth.
DESCRIBE THE BUSINESS PHILOSOPHY THE COMPANY PRIDES ITSELF ON.
A part of the South African solution.
WHY DO YOU BELIEVE TRANSFORMATION IS SIGNIFICANT IN SA?
To achieve growth, we need to put our youth to work. We need an engaged society at each level. We need people to be pulling in the same direction towards a common vision of a better South Africa.
Diversity provides strength and empowerment is not dependence – our focus on transformation needs to
be singularly focused on making sure that we have robust, independent, sustainable businesses, youth,
employees and South Africans.
Siyakha is a consultancy ﬁrm that has focused on providing solutions to achieve transformation since the
business ﬁrst started in 1998.