Tebogo Makoe, a specialist in human resources and Sasol’s former vice-president of HR operations support, boasts a storied career in people management that’s been thriving for more than a decade.
“It’s all about looking for untapped potential while creating an enabling environment for others to develop, creating sustainable generations of leaders,” she says. To stay sharp, she continues to hone her professional skills.
Makoe is a graduate of the Gordon Institute of Business Science Business School as well as the Harvard Business School.
“Investing in personal development is priceless,” Makoe believes. “Mingling with great minds at global educational institutions is an extraordinary experience that cannot be easily substituted. It helps with staying ahead of the curve.”
Her time spent at leading educational and business institutions has had an incredible impact on Makoe, helping her grow from strength to strength, and ultimately leading her to her most recent position.
At the beginning of the year, she joined AfroCentric Group as the new group executive of human capital and transformation for health. Although she has a wealth of experience in people management and HR, this is her first foray into the healthcare industry after years spent at Eskom and Sasol.
“AfroCentric is on a mission to transform healthcare by making it affordable and accessible. The impact is big and opportunities to make a difference are many,” Makoe says, outlining how she was drawn to the position.
During her time working for these large companies, the University of Cape Town and University of the Witwatersrand graduate has learned the value of teamwork and surrounding yourself with the right people.
“Establishing a strong senior team as early on as possible helps in positively managing your energy. Surrounding yourself with knowledgeable people and connecting with colleagues has a positive impact on one’s journey to becoming a senior,” she explains.
Being an intermediary between employees and executives has its challenges, but Makoe is adamant about reaping the benefits too, especially as she’s climbed the corporate ladder herself.
“Treating the chief executive, executive committee team and board as a source of insight and advice rather than an obligation has transformed each engagement into a source of energy rather than a drain of energy.”
Through her experience engaging with employees up and down the corporate structure of businesses, Makoe often leads diverse teams from various fields. She has always been drawn to developing people and offers a wealth of knowledge to professionals, both young and old.
“Rather delay fast-tracking being in a senior position and instead empower yourself with knowledge so that you seize the next opportunity with confidence and engage equally with your peers,” she emphasises.
When asked what advice she has for girls and young women, she says:
“It can be done, it can be achieved, go get it. I hope in our paths as senior executives we do not fail them, but enable them to go get it.”