CEO Today Africa Awards 64 CEO Today Africa Awards 2018 SOUTH AFRICA LYN MANSOUR CEO of KLM Empowered Human Solutions Specialists When Lyn Mansour started KLM Empowered Human Solutions Specialists in 2005, she didn’t just start a business; she started a purpose-driven journey that would see over 8 800 aspiring South African learners graduating as a sought after talent pool, as trail blazers and as empowered individuals that would stand tall in the face of change and equality. Her humanitarian approach translated into business success: Lyn has grown KLM Empowered year on year, achieving an exceptional 52% growth in 2017 and another 45% in the 2018 fiscal. Lyn proudly accepts the honour of being amongst acclaimed South African and African greats as a consecutive recipient of the internationally acclaimed annual ‘CEO of Africa Award’ 2018. Her story of grit and Greatness is reaching far across the globe. Lyn Mansour is an entrepreneur and business woman who began her career in talent acquisition before moving into Skills Development. As a young entrepreneur in the 80’s, a wife and a mother of two by age 19, Lyn dreamed of breaking the barriers of women suppression and inequalities in communities, the workplace and across South Africa; of growing a corporate eco-system built on inclusion for those less fortunate in her country; of driving her business forward towards a bigger purpose that would leave her feeling satiated as both a humanitarian and astute business woman. “ I always loved the thrill of business and the placement of individuals in steady careers that would help them support themselves and their families. But after so many years in the talent acquisition sector, I felt the need to do more. I was not satisfied with the journey’s end of talent seeking and career placement. ” “ In 2005, I made a life-changing decision to transition my then recruitment-based business, KLM & Associates, into the fully accredited Skills Development, training facility and project management organisation, KLM Empowered Human Solutions Specialists (Pty) Ltd. The new business would serve a bigger purpose for individuals wanting to embark on an ongoing journey of self-improvement and development; one which had no end, with which I could personally connect, and of which I could be a part ” says Lyn. In light of her thirst for self-empowerment and understanding, Lyn’s decision to expand the business in 2005 required her to start again at grass roots level. With a new team on board, and a dream along the growth curve, Lyn loaded up a 14-seater Toyota minibus with skills manuals, feedback files and suitcases, and took on a brave journey, travelling across the greater Cape and interior regions of South Africa as a woman alone, into the rural and misunderstood regions of South Africa. “ I drove 6 000 kilometres over 21 days to find answers and a greater purpose. I wanted to understand for myself what our country needed when it came to transferring skills that were relevant, and to discover ways to bring meaningful education and better inclusion to the workplace for disadvantaged groups and persons with disability ,” says Lyn. As the founder and CEO of KLM Empowered and its thriving private F.E.T College in Johannesburg, South Africa, Lyn’s determination has set an example as she and her team have reaped the rewards of upskilling thousands of aspiring men and women in their respective fields. As a team, they have earned the respect of the industry, globally, for their unyielding drive towards inclusion, diversity and equality in business. On the wings of her 2017 CEO Today Africa accolade, KLM Empowered launched a national campaign in June this year, dubbed “ The Greatness Effect ” that exploded through the corridors of 2018, as a successful pitch towards ‘ paying Greatness forward ’. “ Greatness is a doing word ,” says Lyn. “ It’s an action of talent, humility and leadership combined. My belief is that we should be dropping the veil of titles and entitlement, gender, race and disability across our planet, and start with accepting our Greatness within as human beings - and follow this on by paying our Greatness forward to those that can learn from us, grow from us and ultimately become greater than us .” As a businesswoman whose experience spans over three decades of change, Lyn never let circumstances dictate her vision or opportunities; her belief in her own skillset and inner power is what has propelled her determination and success. “ We all have choices; we can choose to wallow or we can choose to believe that we are wired for power and abundance; that we are wired for something more, ” says Lyn. FROM GRIT TO GREATNESS “I drove 6 000 kilometers from Johannesburg through to the Northern Cape of South Africa over a period of 21 days, to find a greater purpose.”

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