More than 900 people gathered at Tomorrow’s Leaders Convention last Friday, 20 March at Emperors Palace to learn and be inspired by the best of the millennial generation. Delegates from all sectors celebrated young leaders who have made remarkable strides in their sector.
At no time in history has leadership mattered as much as it does today. According to Ralph Mupita, Old Mutual’s Chief Executive of Emerging Markets, “Leadership needs to be grounded by having clarity of purpose in something larger than oneself.” Mupita urged tomorrow’s leaders to aim high and have world class abilities.
Passionate and energetic 23-year-old, Tumelo Mothotoane, SABC 24 Hour News Channel anchor encouraged delegates not to underestimate humble beginnings, because that is when difficult lessons are learnt that build character. Raised in Limpopo, Mothotoane, said that despite some objections that she was too young to be taken seriously as a news anchor, she has learnt to “stand up and be counted.”
Media personality and master of ceremonies, Jeremy Maggs emphasised the importance for leaders to keep up to speed in a world which now operates on a 2.4 second news cycle. A positive mindset, flexibility and good listening skills were critical traits for leaders in 2015, he said.
The Taking Ownership panel discussion, the first of three, focused on taking the lead, with stories from well-established business leaders. Just as the discussion came to an end, delegates were entertained by a flashmob who rose from within the crowd to dance to the tune of I Just Can’t Get Enough by Depeche Mode and Abba’s Money, Money, Money as balloons fell from the roof and money was thrown across the stage.
The Inspirational Under 30’s panel discussion featured Vusi Kunene, owner of The Blackanese sushi restaurant and South Africa’s first female football agent Karabo Mathang. Paralympic swimmer Emily Gray shared her courageous story as a cancer survivor and amputee. Tech entrepreneur, Adii Pienaar who founded the biggest ecommerce platform in the world, WooThemes, said, “Success is an opportunity to look forward to reaching a new milestone.” He said that the best time to take business risks was when one is young. Another panellist, Mukovhe Morris Masutha, told delegates how he decided to quit his full-time job in the financial sector to start the not-for-profit Thusanani Foundation, which has helped send 400 rural youth to university with R160 million in bursaries.
TV presenters and models Pearl Thusi and Maps Maponyana, singer songwriter Jimmy Nevis, conservationist Braam Malherbe and Dr Danny Jordaan, President of South African Football Association shared even more inspiring stories at the Famous Faces panel discussion.
“This year’s Convention was like no other, we were happy to see the great response from young leaders in private and public sector taking ownership and creating a clear path for their careers,” says Greg Penfold, Events Division Manager at Cape Media.
During the break-away sessions, attendees had the opportunity to network with the media and delegates at the exhibition section at Emperors Palace. The exhibition was an opportunity for delegates to ask more questions, and engage with other inspirational leaders to get insight on their preferred industry.
“We look forward to hearing more success stories after this convention as we have in the previous years, and as Emily Gray said, ‘Impossible is nothing.” Cape Media has started preparations for Tomorrow’s Leaders Convention 2016 and for more information on new dates, visit our Facebook page and website,” concludes Penfold.
For those who were unable to be a part of this year’s event, nominations for next year will be open soon.