CEO Today - Africa Awards 2022

- 22 - accountability is invaluable. While the emphasis is often on skills and credentials, I am a firm believer in ensuring that the candidate selected displays the right attitude. In terms of motivating existing teams and extracting greater value, it is important to appreciate that people want to be seen, heard, valued, and feel rewarded for going the extra mile. Most often, focusing attention on the smaller details can make the most significant difference. It is important to invest in building teams that recognise individuals. Leaders must be equipped and encouraged to understand what may inhibit or inspire their colleagues. This understanding helps drive a more personal approach – one that employees recognise and respond to, enabling businesses to secure greater buy-in and action in driving the objectives set. Having said that, it is also wise to make the difficult peoplerelated decisions timeously. Where there is no meeting of minds, the lack of commitment and the misalignments deepen with neither party benefitting. On the topic of people, how does Omnia leverage and recognise the value of its employees as individuals and a collective? We can all agree that it is people who are responsible for building and advancing businesses and nurturing stakeholder relations across the value chain. Irrespective of how great your product, technology or solution is, if your service proposition does not hold firm, this poses the greatest risk for business relevance and stability. Purpose, values, goals and commitment may be compelling on paper, but these have to translate on an employee level. Appreciating this, I believe an effective leader is onewho values each person and encourages growth as well as collaboration. They respect and leverage the individual’s experiences, perspectives, approaches, ideas, cultures, etc. They also have due regard for the concerns and opinions of their employees, remaining responsive to opportunities and challenges. We all have different approaches to critical thinking, creativity, problems and solutions, so it stands to reason that when collective inputs are valued, these translate to more robust, successful and sustainable solutions. Valuing the diversity of thought and approach is critical to a successful business in the long term. As the captain of the Omnia ship, it is exciting to lead a team that is resourceful, dedicated and, more importantly, passionate. The team’s focus on delivering at the highest standard for our customers and partners is truly humbling. It is equally fulfilling to work with some of the most creative minds I have had the pleasure of collaborating with. This is a privilege I do not take for granted. This appreciationhas contributed tomy deepdesire to broaden the level of reward and recognition afforded to employees. For this reason, we initiated the Omnia share scheme in 2021, extending ownership opportunities to our more than 4,000 employees who work so hard to consistently grow this business and those of our customers. All our people continue to play a meaningful role in driving Omnia’s relevance and ensuring we remain a world-class business. Where do you see yourself and Omnia in the coming years? Omnia’s short-term focus is to grow the business through process, product, service and technology enhancements, supported by a strengthened supply and distribution network. We are also invested in consistently lowering our operating impact on the environment – as well as that of our customers and partners. In the medium term, we aim to lead the change to greener chemicals, biotech and biomolecular solutions, offering network-created and innovative technologies that ensure a greener future and enhanced quality of life for all. Achieving organic as well as inorganic growth – either through acquisitions or partnership opportunities – is a critical component of realising our overall development ambitions. In the medium term, Omnia aims to deeply entrench itself across its growing number of geographies, bolstering its sustainability, global competitiveness, customer value proposition and workforce capabilities. We want to win in every market and set the industry standard. But importantly, we want to support our customers in building leading businesses. On a personal level, my goal is to complete what I have started at Omnia and have a greater impact on the business as well as our people, customers, partners and society. I live part of my purpose through Omnia, and this is incredibly gratifying. I am humbled by the successes achieved over the years and grateful to those who have contributed. CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2022 - SOUTH AFRICA -

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