Port Elizabeth matriculant and Engen Maths and Science School alumni, Kamvalethu Hlatshwayo did not allow the passing of his father in 2012 or subsequent financial constraints get in the way of studying towards his dream job. Kamvalethu, who is starting the four-year journey to achieve a Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical) at Stellenbosch University this year, says he will tackle the challenges ahead the same way he achieved his incredible success at school. Kamvalethu beat out 46 fellow matriculants at the end of last year to take top spot in the Engen Maths and Science School (EMSS) class based at the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth. Achieving 80% for science and 79% for maths, he credits the extra lessons provided by EMSS for his outstanding results, which were enough to ensure he finished second amongst all the leaners who wrote the 2018-matric examinations at the three EMSS schools based in the Eastern Cape. “It’s all about hard work, managing your time and your priorities,” says the 18-year-old, whose greatest challenge was not believing in himself at first. Kamvalethu grew up in KwaNobuhle, a township on the outskirts of Uitenhage, and attended Solomon Mahlangu High School. He is however adamant that he could never have achieved such academic excellence without the commitment of the Engen programme teachers, who gave him the support he so desperately needed over three years from Grade 10 to Grade 12. “The EMSS programme helped me not only academically but also with life lessons and made me want to learn more and to attend classes all the time.” He was also inspired by his science teacher, Mr Stuurman who, he says, was his mentor even though he might not have been aware of the impact of his advice. “I took it and live by it.” Kamvalethu has the following advice for the 2019 matriculants. “This is your last year in high school so make it count, the decision you make this year will impact your life in the future, life begins . . .
Great businesses are not merely built on service but exceptional service and great customer experience; and an important element of their success is the value-proposition they deliver to their customers. Great businesses understand that for them to thrive and survive, they need to be constantly focusing on delivering value to their customers. “Exceptional businesses differentiate their offering on service and not necessarily price alone because research has proven again and again that consumers are willing to pay a premium, provided they “get great service” and great value for what they are paying for”, says Femi Adebanji, Customer Service Speaker and Expert. Femi, who heads the Service Excellence Institute, South Africa, further goes on to add that if organisations want to deliver the type of value that sets them apart, then they first need to be clear on two things: Firstly, what their “value-proposition” to their customers is and secondly, be clear on how their customers define value. “Otherwise, you might think you’re offering your customers value and be completely off the mark”, says Femi. He goes on to add that in the customer-economy where we find ourselves, the truth is that the power has shifted from businesses to consumers and thanks to the power of social media, consumers now have the power to shift and shape perception for or against brands. Consequently, businesses must focus a lot more on asking themselves – how do we deliver, tangible, exceptional value to our customers while delivering a seamless and hassle-free customer experience? If your value-proposition is not compelling enough, the fact is that potential customers will end up buying from your competitors and not from you. ‘A simple way of coming up with a compelling value proposition, says Femi, is to ask yourself the two important questions your customers are asking themselves, which is “Why should they buy from you and not your competitors and secondly, what’s in it for . . .
[Cape Town, 19 January 2019] – Since its official launch in Q4 of 2018, NJIN Agency has prioritised the signing of specific (much-loved) South African brands and companies where the agency felt it could make a real and positive impact. By signing with the WSB Cape Cobras Cricket Team as its full-service digital marketing and technologies partner, NJIN Agency is taking strides to further position itself as the go-to agency for South African sport, music and entertainment companies. >> view NJIN Agency website “To be fair, we’ve previously enjoyed an association with the WSB Cape Cobras under the umbrella of our former parent company, so it’s not like this is 100% new,” says Head of Agency, Brandon Faber. “But we’re happy that we’ve been chosen to take over and move that relationship forward . . . Following our recent partnership with The Parlotones, we’re satisfied with the way iconic and Proudly SA brands are embracing our message.” Driven Specialists. #NO.BS Community-focused with an unwavering commitment to getting the very best performances out of their team, The WSB Cape Cobras is very much a mirror image of NJIN Agency’s approach to service delivery. “The WSB Cape Cobras are proudly pedantic about who we choose to partner with,” says Brand and Sponsorships manager, David Brooke. “NJIN Agency has proven itself to be reliable and thoughtful in their approach to our digital marketing and technology requirements . . . we expect great things from our partnership going forward.” Driven Specialists. #NO.BS “We’re just super-chuffed to be able to contribute to the WSB Cape Cobras,” says NJIN Agency MD, Dennis Armstrong. “For our Cape Town-based clients and team-members the association also affords the opportunity to watch some of the world’s best players showcase their talent in what is, surely, the most beautiful cricket ground on the planet. We’re honoured to be a part of the WSB Cape Cobras family.” For more information please visit . . .
REMOVE ME: Mahala Johannesburg 19 January 2019 - You definitely don't want to miss out on the best way to kick off 2019! If you’re a cool cat, you will know about Woodstock! In the summer of 1969 Woodstock made history through its three day music festival, which was held on a dairy farm in the Catskill Mountains, northwest of New York City. The festival attracted more than 400, 000 people, who gathered in the name of peace and music. It was unexpected and at the same time, gave rise to the notion that human beings are inherently good and peace loving; and music is the food that feeds such souls - plus, we all need a day or three out of the city. Boutique Farm Festival 2019 (#BFF2019) offers you just that - a three day festival with more than 20 of South Africa's greatest music acts, hosted at the Tweefontein Melkery farm, conveniently located just off the R21 between Pretoria and Kempton Park. Unlike Woodstock, we want to manage expectations and are starting out small. We have made 400 tickets available to the public, which includes free camping for three (3) days and to ensure your comfort, we promise you enough showers and toilets. Bring your friends, your tents and get ready for an unforgettable three day weekend from the 25th to the 27th January, 2019.#BFF2019 brings you a three day festival of 20 of South Africa's greatest music acts, hosted at the Tweefontein Melkery farm, conveniently located just off the R21 between Pretoria and Kempton Park. We want you to be part of the best crowd the bands could ever hope for but we also want to ensure your comfort, hence we are only making 400 tickets available. This includes free camping for the 3 days, so bring your own tents. ***** TICKETS ***** Buy your tickets @ https://tickets.tixsa.co.za/event/boutique-farm-festival-2019 R375 per person or R555 per person including festival shirt. No under 18s. No day tickets. Some good news! We have decided to reserve a limited amount of walk-in . . .
Johannesburg , 19 January 2019- December 2018 has come and gone and we find ourselves in January 2019. This however does not mean the end of the holiday period in South Africa. As such, many South Africans, as well as tourists from across the world, will be making their way to different parts of our country. Hotels are usually at full capacity during peak season and service is the order of the day, just as it is in any other part of the world where tourists flock to for their annual holiday break. During this time, hotel rooms are in high demand, all the time, for earlier check-ins. As a partner to the hospitality industry, Servest collaborates with its clients to find innovative and effective solutions to ease the pressures during the busy season. Maalikah says, “As a service delivery agent, we motivate and reward our colleagues to do their best in the time they are given, with the least amount of disruption to our clients.” At this time of year, the industry is under even more pressure than usual, and any mistake from service providers reflects negatively on the image of our client’s brands, a responsibility that Servest takes extremely seriously. As the end user, this being the hotel management, it often costs them in having to provide their guests with gratis products, food and favours, if a room is not ready on time. This inter-dependent cycle of turning over rooms, is an economic model in its own and can make or break the reputation of a locale. Having a dependable cleaning team, is therefore as important as any other component of the hotel’s offerings. This brings to mind the in-sourcing versus outsourcing debate, with the latter still being favoured, particularly in the hospitality environment, as it is much more cost effective when you do the maths with respect to HR matters, uniforms, cleaning equipment and products; as well as the daily management of the function. “We often have hotels who have in-sourced employees, request additional workers . . .
Former Madibaz cricketer Anrich Nortje, who is fast emerging as one of South Africa's brightest bowling prospects, says a broader approach to life has helped him hugely during his cricket career. The 25-year-old paceman has been forced to undergo a number of rehabilitation periods, but the hard work he has put in and the support he has received from a number of role players at Nelson Mandela University have seen him reap rich rewards. This has come in the form of a contract with Kolkata Knight Riders to play in the Indian Premier League later this year, a much sought-after deal among modern-day cricketers. Nortje has worked his way steadily through the ranks and caught the eye with a number of influential performances in the inaugural Mzansi Super League late last year. An ankle injury derailed his participation in the Twenty20 competition, but his experiences at Mandela University where he had some injury problems have toughened him mentally for these sorts of challenges. "I learnt quite a bit from my varsity days," said Nortje. "Among them was being patient while playing and also being patient when injured. "I learnt to work hard towards certain goals during my time with Madibaz." He said gaining a degree - he has a B.Comm in financial planning and a postgraduate diploma - was essential to his long-term development as a cricketer. "When I first went to varsity I just wanted to play cricket," said Nortje, who was schooled at Handhaaf Primary and Die Hoërskool Brandwag in Uitenhage. "But after the first injury I started shifting my mindset to focus on my studies. I believe that is something that every cricketer needs. "You can't focus only on sport and hope it works out. Even if you have a decent career there is still an after-sport career that you'll need to pursue and to have something to fall back on is very important." He said having his academic career to focus on when he was injured helped him get through the frustrations of . . .
Johannesburg, 3 January 2019 - As the holiday season comes to a close, many of us make plans to ‘spring clean’ our lives, our cupboards, our homes and so much more. However, just as you plan to clean your personal space, de-clutter your surroundings, office managers and those responsible for the cleaning and maintenance of work spaces, should consider the benefits of using the quiet period to give the work or office environment a deep clean. 1. Downtime makes for good organisation While staff are away, there is likely to be very little disruption to the process and more importantly, to the colleagues of the company. The quiet period is the perfect time to get your ‘house in order’, as they say. During the year, when everyone is doing the grind and are too busy to side step their office space or use different bathrooms, it can be a great inconvenience to do more than the required cleaning and upkeep of the office environment. 2. Image is everything First impressions are important. In psychology it is defined as the event when one person first encounters another person, object or scene. In legal terms, a first impression is defined as a first consideration or judgement. In an interview scenario, you are being judged by your employer, however some employers simply don’t think about your judgement of their environment. An unkempt, unhygienic environment does not make for a good portrayal of the work environment and can leave any visitor to the office, with unintended and even unsuspecting forms of a negative mental image of the business. ‘Judging the book by its cover’, is not just a saying, it happens and as beings who are influenced by image, a negative appearance can greatly tarnish the image of your brand - and it does not matter who is affected because word of mouth makes for an impression by everyone with whom this information is shared. 3. Hygiene makes for a healthy work environment Absenteeism from work can be linked to many things in society . . .
https://youtu.be/-LyKaL7KLqA On 27 December 2018 whilst on a long 15 Kilometer beach run between Kleinemond and Fish River Sun, CEO of Beyond Africa The Mantis Collection - Paul Gardiner, came upon a beached Commons Dolphin. Running through a cleansing African Storm, Paul came upon the struggling beached dolphin. "The dolphin was clearly alive and I was alone on a rainy beach and, despite that, I decided to jump in and try to get him back in the water," explained Paul. "I struggled for about an hour to save this magnificent creature and propped my cellphone on the sand to capture the footage, hoping that the ending would be a triumph," said Gardiner. Being alone Gardiner was prudent in not going too deep into the water for fear of being sucked out in the rip tide. Frustratingly the dolphin kept beaching himself each time Paul floated him out, probably exhausted the dolphin kept on being swept back to shore by the waves. With darkness descending Paul had to cease his rescue attempts and leave the dolphin to the sometimes cruel forces of nature. A clearly emotional Gardiner said his goodbyes and allowed nature to take it's course. The dolphin was young and looked healthy and one always wonders why a single dolphin ends up beaching itself. The first thought is always that man has somehow contributed to the demise of our precious marine animals. Around the world, an estimated one million birds and 100 000 marine mammals and sea turtles die each year when they become trapped in plastic or eat it, perhaps mistaking it for a food. Plastic is one of biggest threats to all whales and dolphins in all the oceans of the world. "Mantis is very keen to support and get behind any Mantis Marine Activity that will highlight the fragility of our oceans, in association with our friends Rainer and Silke Schimpf from AB Marine and Expert Tours. One of the ways is via a proposed Whale Sculpture to be a receptacle of plastic waste on the beachfront. This . . .
DarkFEST Episode III - Return of the Send Vuurberg Farm, Stellenbosch - We’re calling on you to join the action as DarkFEST announces its return to South Africa for the third episode of pure freeride mountain biking mayhem. All set to hit Stellenbosch in February 2019, DarkFEST is an action-packed event, with huge sends, brutal slams and massive hits with the best crew in MTB. Fronted by bossman Same Reynolds and his legendary build team consisting of Belgian trail building specialist Nico Vink and all-round Austrian powerhouse Clemens Kaudela, all have one common goal, to go bigger than ever before, if that's even possible. The year of 2019 is set to be kicked off in high gear, with some gnarly new additions planned to this already mammoth course. Sam and the boys will begin remodelling the Vuurberg farm in early January to prepare for the arrival of the invited riders and the insanity that’s sure to follow. DarkFEST dates will run through the first week of February 2019 with more public days and additional viewing sessions throughout. If you can make it out to Stellenbosch to witness the shred, bookmark the 8th and 9th of February in your calendars. The public days at DarkFEST don't disappoint either, if you want to get a taste of the excitement. "We're inviting some of the worlds best riders again, many returning faces from last year and maybe a couple other legends as well," - Sam Reynolds. The full list of riders is to be announced soon. For now we can confirm: Sam Reynolds (GB) Adolf Silva (ES) Ethan Nell (USA) Tom Vam Steenbergen (CAN) Brendan Faiclough (GB) Theo Erlangson (ZA) "We always want to make it bigger and better and it was already pretty damn big and pretty damn good last year, so it's going to be a real challenge to make something better than that. We are totally up for it and I know I've got the two guys for the job!" Sam Reynolds. So there you have it, the 2019 edition of DarkFEST is locked and loaded and . . .
SPAR Eastern Cape achieved global recognition for their commitment to reducing plastic pollution when they received an award at the SPAR International Conference last month. The conference in Amsterdam in the Netherlands went under the banner of the SPAR International Responsible Retailing Forum and brought managers from around the world to share ideas and best-practice examples. SPAR EC managing director Conrad Isaac accepted the award on behalf of the company and said it was gratifying to have received such recognition. He was quick to add, though, that their Stop Plastic campaign, which was launched in April to eliminate the single-use of plastic bags, was not about earning awards. "Our mission is to create awareness about the dangers to the environment of plastic pollution," he said. "We are doing this because it is the right thing to do. I equate it to playing sport - if you play well, the scoreboard will take care of itself. "So this campaign is not about awards but about playing the game well and we feel are on the right track." Isaac was referring to the fact that from the launch of the Stop Plastic campaign on April 6 until the end of September they had sold three million fewer plastic bags than over the same period last year. "If you had asked me before our campaign started what we would achieve, I would never have expected to reach a number of three million. "So that is really encouraging and obviously our aim now is to keep adding to that. Every single plastic bag less that we sell means a better future for us all." He said the Stop Plastic campaign placed them at the forefront among SPAR retailers worldwide in the forum of responsible retailing. "Many people at the forum have no idea where Port Elizabeth or the Eastern Cape even is, but from a SPAR Africa point of view we are leading the way and from a SPAR international perspective we are certainly among the leaders in the 41 countries where we retail. "Many of the . . .