Training for future african leaders
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From April to September 2016, several high-potential African entrepreneurs took part in the Lead Campus training program. This initiative, created by the Fondation AfricaFrance, provides future leaders with high-level training and enables them to develop new skills. The program, which gathers actors from both private and public sectors, is also a unique opportunity for executives to expand their networks and promote their projects.
"To guarantee the future of Africa, more investments must be made in developing local skills."
Krinesh Govender, Head of Legal and Insurance for Total South Africa
25 African executives with different profiles and backgrounds make up the first Lead Campus Program class. Created with companies such as Total, this training is managed by four well-established institutions: Sciences Po Executive Education (France), the Institut Supérieur de Management, Dakar (Senegal), the Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice of the University of Cape Town, (South Africa) and the Training Center of AFD (French Development Agency). “Lead Campus is for future African leaders,” explains Gloria Bâ, in charge of the program at Sciences Po Executive Education. “This training is dedicated to supporting their business projects. The challenge is to promote and build on the skills of African executives.”
For one of the participants, Medhi Mahtat, a 33-year-old Moroccan engineer, this training is a way of broadening his professional horizons. “I have always wanted to progress and, in 2011, I gave my career a boost by entering the world of private equity,” he explains. “Africa offers many opportunities in this area. To seize them, I needed a program like Lead Campus to help me develop my leadership and business knowledge and learn about the African economy.”
My class was made up of high-level professionals from 14 different countries. It was an enriching experience.
Essential Company Contribution
Just like Medhi Mahtat, Sehl Zargouni, head of a Tunisian microcredit company, discovered the Lead Campus program thanks to the French Development Agency, which recognized his talent. Thanks to this program, Sehl Zargouni was able to improve his company’s CSR* policy: “We were monitored by a mentor from a large company,” he recounts. “Mine was the director of an African subsidiary of Total and provided me with essential information on the importance of CSR in general and in the context of my company in particular. I have been able to put this training to good use.”
In addition to selecting candidates and participants – mentors and teaching experts – companies such as Total helped define the program’s strategic focus, based around three main topics: leadership and team management, business tools and challenges and corporate social and environmental responsibility.
For participant Krinesh Govender, Head of Legal and Insurance for Total South Africa, the benefit of this training is not just limited to the teaching. “I also learned a lot from my fellow participants,” he recalls.“Besides, their input also helped me a lot with my development plan for Total African barristers. This network is useful for my future, but also for the future of Africa, which will benefit from this diversity.”
Lead Campus will be recruiting candidates until the end of February 2017. This year’s class will include 30 participants.
* Corporate Social Responsibility.
For further information about the Lead Campus Program, contact Gloria Bâ ([email protected])
Becoming a mentor myself for the next group of students in Lead Campus, I am proud to be an ambassador for this programme in Tunisia.