2018 Panel Discussions

Like every country, tribe, association or group, cultural norms define and shape value systems; how success is measured in the African context flows from this order. This panel seeks to expose and analyze the cultural norms, practices, value tenets, social cues, verbal and nonverbal communication cues e.t.c. and how these affect and shape our understanding of professional success. Further, this panel questions some norms as we understand them to be and explores which should be further adopted, enhanced or abandoned within different professional practice areas.

It is a well researched fact that career success is determined more by reputation, image, connections and exposure than it is by performance alone. According to the very popular PIE Model, performance accounts for only 10% of professional success, while image and exposure makeup for 60% and 30%, respectively. This panel will discuss how to ignite your career by being your best and most effective town crier and/or advocate. It aims to highlight necessary strategies to building your personal brand while growing diverse formal and informal networks.

These panelists will speak to how they were able to leverage the fact that they were “different” to be successful in their professions, despite the odds being being stacked against them. This panel will comprise of current and former executives who will discuss their experiences, how they creatively climbed up the professional landscape, and lessons learned to ease the ascent for the next generation.

From the advent/introduction of western education, success in the African context has typically been limited to careers such as medicine, law, engineering, nursing and accounting. With immigrant families, the pressure to succeed is even greater. This panel seeks to explore the opportunities that lie outside the confines of traditional success by discussing with people who defied the norms by taking the leap of faith and attained success outside the box.