Big business can continue Mandela’s legacy
“I would like to encourage corporate South Africa to invest in the education of their employees, our youth and the children in their communities. This is not just to safeguard our economy, but to also move forward in our quest for nation-building and reconciliation.”
Nelson Mandela offered this message to the captains of industry in South Africa. The country has made great strides since his tenure as president. We can now participate freely in the global economy, sports and in other areas. South African companies have expanded across sub-Saharan Africa and are a vital economic engine for the continent.
But we remain a nation where economic inequalities still exist. So what can the corporate world do to honour Mandela’s legacy?
The best way to continue his legacy is to increase its efforts in addressing inequality and creating an environment in which the underprivileged have the tools to deal with daily challenges and work their way out of poverty.
Companies can launch corporate social investment (CSI) projects that echo Mandela’s words. These projects should not be motivated by marketing objectives or profit maximisation, but to help local communities at grassroots level and to promote sustainable business practices that benefit all role players.
Mining and mining-related businesses are one sector that can enhance South Africa’s economic outlook. Government has pushed the sector to take the lead in helping the nation achieve its social and economic goals. Forward-thinking mining businesses can commit to transformation with inclusive growth because legislative and regulatory changes drive industry actors to prioritise the national developmental agenda.
Equitable sharing among the parties involved in mining operations is essential for its success. A compact between mining and the communities it serves, the social and labour plan (SLP) opens the door for significant stakeholder engagement.
An SLP can help mining companies increase their involvement in supporting employment creation and upskilling local communities.
It can make an impact by supporting SMME development programmes. SMMEs can be increasingly represented in the mining goods and services supply chain for new jobs and growth prospects to be created.
Transformation can also be made possible through procurement. It can help grow current suppliers and establish new ones. But procurement must address social concerns with solutions that have a significant, long-lasting impact to create shared value. Localised strategies and efforts can help meet procurement goals while also fostering community sustainability and shared value.
By generating jobs, providing opportunities for education and skills development and doing this while consolidating their talent base, INSITE by MTS assists businesses in strategically skilling and enhancing their local communities.
Among its many functions, INSITE controls the development of skills, provides the youth with opportunities to improve themselves and aids businesses in uplifting local communities. To direct your career and skills development programmes, visit www.mts.co.za and find out more.