On 27 November 2018, WEConnect International and EY brought the Collaboration Workshop to Kwa-Zulu Natal’s capital city, Durban. Corporate representatives from EY and Ingersoll Rand were present to kick off the Roadshow, introduce themselves, and their companies. Women business owners took advantage of the corporates present by both seeking advice related to the corporate procurement procedures and expressing some challenges they had with regards to doing business with corporates.
Our EY host Sinqobile Khumalo, Procurement Talent Africa Team Member Business Enablement, told women business owners: “Know what EY does, really understand the business, so you know how we can best work together if I ever need your services.”
In 2017, WEConnect International in South Africa undertook the initiative of creating collaboration groups within the network with the ultimate goal of building greater capacity for women business owners in order to take on the “bigger” projects from corporates.
The workshops’ objective is to allow time for collaboration discussions. These discussions are necessary to review opportunities and market gaps. Some critical aspects of this process are understanding collaboration principles, establishing rules of engagement, cultivating a collaborative culture, and fostering collaborative leadership.
To date, several collaborative groups have been set up focusing on different sectors. WEConnect International in South Africa would like to continue this trend in other major cities in South Africa, namely Cape Town, Western Cape and Durban, KwaZulu Natal, where there is a significant number of women business owners who would benefit from this program and assist with future business growth opportunities through networks formed during the process.
Attendees had the opportunity to learn about growing their women-owned business, understanding more about working successfully with multinational corporations and find out more about supplier inclusion.