I was really delighted to be asked by the Crown Agents to address a group of senior Africa leaders as part of a week-long leadership training programme in the UK. These leaders from Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda came from both the private and the public sectors and were in the UK developing authentic leadership skills.
However, I was asked to address the group on the impact that global cultural differences can have when leading colleagues across cultural boundaries. As Africa becomes increasingly engaged in global trade, developing global fluency will be a vital skill which African organisations will need to focus on. China is ever more active in Africa – as is India – and there are still lots of legacy relationships with the old colonial powers, so African leaders will increasingly need a knowledge of how business is conducted in various different parts of the world.
I find it interesting that for the first 15 years or so of running Global Business Culture, we were very rarely asked to work in Africa or with African organisations but the last 3 or 4 years has seen a reversal of that trend and we find ourselves incerasingly involved in Africa-related activities. My hope is that this increased involvement is, in a microscopic way, a sign of the growth and increased stability of many African economies and a portent that Africa is starting to become a much more important global player.
I look forward to ever increasing ties with Africa clients.