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Tsakane Ngoepe: Getting more women into leadership positions

In 2019, the proportion of women in senior management roles globally grew to 29%; the highest number ever recorded. In Africa, the number is slightly higher but still an indicator that there are fewer women in leadership positions in African companies especially tech companies. 

Many people approach this issue of inequality by asking how we can get more African women interested and involved in tech but Tsakane Ngoepe thinks that’s not the only question people should be asking. She is the Chief of Staff at M-KOPA and on this episode of TechCabal Live, she spoke about her career journey and what it’s like being an African woman in a leadership role.

Career progression over the years

Ngoepe’s journey started at university where she was studying to be an actuary. She soon realised she didn’t like the course so she switched to a degree in finance.  Finally studying a course she prefered, she realised that unlike her mates who were gunning for more traditional roles, Ngoepe felt she wanted to do something different. 

She got interested in impact investment and fortunately, the Bertha Centre for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Cape Town was hiring for the role of a project manager. The requirements for this role were five years of working experience, a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) qualification and a Masters degree. Despite not meeting any of the requirements, in the spirit of ‘shoot your shot’ she applied anyways.

And it worked. Although the interviewers recognized she wasn’t qualified for the role, they offered her a different position in the company. After a while working as a consultant in the impact investment space, she realized she wanted to work within an investment fund. 

Source: Techcabal

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