Thursday, June 21, 2007


How do you fit in the team as the new intern with slight familiarity of your teammates and the culture of the organization?
Well, working in a team is a bit challenging as we all have different characters and we relate differently from each other. I believe its worse if you are an intern or new in the organization and you are not acquainted with the people around and your teammates. Thanks to the WOW training programme. This is the real situation where am applying the skills I acquired from the session on teamwork and how to fit in. I’m trying to humble myself and work on whatever task anyone from the team requested me to do. I believe that it’s a leaning process and that’s the only way I can fit in the team. I’m trying to be competent in my work and if am not sure I present it to the senior lady in the group to verify it before I submit.

How about the debate of asking questions? As an intern there is always resistance in asking many questions due to the fear of being considered to lack the confidence in yourself or knowing nothing. On the other hand, its important to note that you get the instructions appropriately otherwise you might mess-up the project. I’m trying to avoid asking too many questions. However, I do ask to clarify on some points where am not clear and ensure that I pay much attention to details to avoid asking more questions.

Hey folks! I need more help on this, could you please provide me with more ideas on how to fit in and avoid asking too many questions.

Monday, June 18, 2007


Its good to read that Suzan Arthur also received a positive attitude from the people at Brunswick. It is always the case, some people do complain about negative attitude towards new interns at the work place. Just to add some remarks on what Ijeoma highlighted. Most of the students who are serving articles in the Law firms complains of being used as administrators and messengers instead of practicing legal duties. I have a friend of mine who resigned from a Law Firm despite having a good stipend of about R6,500 and join the Legal Aid where he is getting R3000 stipend. He indicated that he was not learning any thing apart from being used as a messenger, delivering files from one court to the other and back in the office.
However, others are lucky to be found in a friendly environment. I’m now clocking two weeks at the work place and all I can say is that some people have been so friendly to me. They are others who are willing to take me around at lunchtime to show me places where I can get food and just to get familiar to the place. Although I was unfortunate, when I started work my supervisor immediately went for a two weeks leave, but he assigned me to the senior researcher, a consultant subcontracted by Ochre to help with the Rustenburg project and his assistant to be working with me and helping where it is required. So far, I have been busy working on the project in Rustenburg. I have been assigned to work with the field workers in Rustenburg, who are helping in data collection from different tourists destinations, which will be incorporated in the Rustenburg tourism route we are intending to develop. This includes the cultural and heritage sites, outdoors adventures, township/shebeens and mining. I have been helping in capturing the data from the questionnaires into the database and analyzing the data. I’m also helping with literature review on other projects, which will be working on next month.

Monday, June 4, 2007


If I say i was not nervous, I will be dishonest. The night before my first day at work, I was so worried of what was to happen on this important day. I couldn’t stop imagining what was going to happen when I arrived the first day. I thought of my supervisor, are we going to get along with each other, suppose he/she won’t be in a position to help me achieve my goals or targets. I reflect on choosing my mentor but this I thought will happen after knowing some people around. I anticipate finding someone who will be gracious to me and assist me to be acquainted with the people around and choose the right mentor. My most fear was the assignment I will be asked to execute. Suppose they ask me to do something I know nothing about. Being a master’s student I knew that my supervisor would expect me to be competent in my work. Suppose I won’t perform according to his/her expected standards. Anyway these were some of my nightmares before the due day.

But the reality is that, I arrived at Ochre Media at 08:00. There was no one at that time except the cleaner. She opened the door for me and asked me to sit at the reception. After some good 10 to 15 minutes, the receptionist entered, I explained to her who I was and what I was there for. She gave me a warm welcome and asked me to come with her to the coffee bar and have some coffee. While we were having some coffee she alerted me that she starts work at 08:00 and everyone else starts at 08:30 so I had to wait. After 08:30 almost everyone was around. She called the HR manager and told her about me. She immediately came to me and gave me a warm welcome and asked me to come to her office. We had a brief meeting; she introduced me to some documents to read about the company such as the office services and IT induction pack and the list of names, positions, departments, contact numbers and extension numbers of all employees in the organization. After that, she took me around the building, which has five floors and introduce me to all the staff members. After the introduction she showed me my office and asked the people from the IT department to connect my computer and create my email address. After a while my supervisor and his assistant came. We again had a small meeting where they introduced me to two projects, which we will be working on. The one they are currently working on in Rustenburg is called the “Rustenburg Tourism Meander/Route,” which has a deadline on the 25th of June. And the second project is on “Cape Town City Hall Redevelopment,” which we will start working on from next week, and its deadline is on 31st of June. He alerted me that we will be travelling to Rustenburg on Thursday and we have a workshop with people working on the Cape Town project on Friday this week. So I spent the whole day looking at the briefs for the two projects to understand what is going on. I’m looking forward to what the future holds for me. However, I do remember that we are a resource to each other; I might need your assistance one-way or the other.
This was my first day at Ochre Media and I hope that i will benefit from this journey.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


It has been an enjoyable experience attending the world of work internship programme. As we approach the ultimate week of the programme, the presentations from the various speakers are getting even more interesting. This morning we had a particularly inspiring session with Elspeth Kempe whose presentation focussed on business writing skills, a valuable skill, particularly for some of us where English is our second language. We learnt how to use language tactfully and the correct usage of language when conversing with colleagues and other staff members more senior than us. She spiced up the presentation by demonstrating a layout and presentation of a CV which is able to win you a job.

The afternoon session with Des Patel was as useful as the one we had in the morning. Her session on the presentation skills was clearly demonstrated by they way she went about her presentation. Presentation is all about selling yourself first and your services. We learned about the benefits of presentations, some risks involved, and the various typical pitfalls of presenters. She introduced us to the presentation process, design and packaging, and also suggested criteria for presentation structure and the use of visual aids. The two activities we had during the session on presentations were extremely useful for the actual presentation awaiting us on Friday. For me it was a wake up call, to focus on my weaknesses and work on them before the actual day of the presentations.

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Developing a pro-poor strategy in tourism

How far is the transformation and empowerment of previously disadvantaged communities in the tourism industry?

I have developed a habit of reading something before going to bed to make my eyes frail in order to sleep otherwise I can be awake until one o’clock in the morning. Whilst I was searching for something to read, I came across some interesting article in the newspaper about the tourism boom in South Africa. Having studied tourism, any issues dealing with tourism strike me. Speaking at the opening of the first Tourism Black Economic Empowerment; the minister of environmental and tourism Mr. Marthinus Van Schalkwyle mentioned that black South Africans have derived very little benefits from the booming of tourism. He further mentioned that he would have loved to see the tourism industry setting an example for the rest of the country when it comes to black economic development.
Concerning the ministers remarks above, my observation is that, there are many black South Africans who are participating in the tourism industry but what matters is the level they are participating at. It’s unlikely to see black people participating in the tourism industry as owners, directors or stakeholders; most of the black people joined the tourism industry as employees. The other article in the Citizen 18 April 2007 showed that the result from the survey across six provinces demonstrated that on average only 15.6% of 321 bed and breakfast operations are owned by blacks. And of the 90 hotels examined only 4.4% are owned and controlled by blacks. These statistics indicate that the transformation at the institutional level has been very slow; this has also been witnessed by many scholars who argue that the South Africa Tourism Board (SATOUR) commitment to community driven tourism and affirmative action, remained on the level of rhetoric rather than action and that SATOUR focused more on the marketing strategies instead of attending to formerly disadvantaged communities, who were excluded for the industry.
Now, my question is, how can the government speed up the transformation of the tourism industry to make sure that blacks or more particularly the poor people are participating fully in the tourism sector not just as employees but as owners, directors or shareholders?

Tuesday, April 24, 2007




Surname: Katongo
First name: Beauty
Gender: Female


Cell phone: 0847411185 or 0833566913
Email address:

My career objective is to broaden my experience within a company environment that strives for creativity. An organization that provide me an opportunity to make a positive contribution to the economic development. Being involved in formulating strategies that will be used to confront the challenges facing the previously disadvantaged individuals in the tourism sector. Moreover being involved in formulating strategies for poverty alleviation and against HIV/AIDS


Name of institution: University of the Witwatersrand Johannesburg
Qualification: Masters degree in Development Studies

Relevant courses:
Grad 541: Economics and sociology of development
Grad 542: advanced development research methods
Grad 547: Project management
Grad soss: HIV/AIDS in context
Grad 554: Forced migration and refugees studies
Grad 543:Development studies research titled (An investigation
on informal cross border trade as a livelihood strategy for women

Name of Institution: University of Witwatersrand Johannesburg
Qualification: Bachelor of Arts with Honours Degree in Tourism Studies
Relevant courses: Tourism and policy,
Tourism and development,
Local economic development,
Environmental management
Public culture,
Tourism research report, titled: (An investigation on regional tourism in Johannesburg: the case of Zambians cross border traders)

Name of institution: Havatech College Johannesburg
Qualification obtained: Diploma in Information Technology


Position : field researcher
Period of service : 2007
Job description : Conducting a survey of companies supported by SAIBL programme, on the impact of HIV/AIDS in workplace as well as the interventions the companies have put in place.

Company: THE EDGE INSTITUTE (non profit economic policy research organization)
Position : part time researcher
Period of service : March 2006- June 2006
Job description : working on the research projects on foreign direct investment (FDIs)

Company: Municipal Demarcation Board, Pretoria

Position : Researcher and Administrative officer
Period of service : (2001-2002)
Job description : Research and administrative work

Reasons for leaving employment: I fully served the contract as in the agreement.


The University of Natal.Theological Bursary awards;
The University of Witwatersrand Postgraduate Merit award;

· Interest in adapting to varied physical and professional environments and a desire to work with different language, national and cultural backgrounds.
· Leader of ladies meetings in the Church.

· Written and verbal communication
· Interpersonal and analytical skills
· Enjoy being part of a team.
· Able to work without supervision
· Adaptability to a multicultural working environment coaching abilities
· Competence in use of all aspects of office 2003

Doctor George Mukuka
University of Johannesburg
Department of arts and culture


Another insight in this week’s session was the inspiration of developing a C.V, Covering letter and interviews. Ray Naran one of the presenters from CCDU Wits University cited that a C.V is often used for elimination rather than selection and he also highlighted that “many interviews look for a reasons why they should not employ you rather than a reasons why they should”. This is where one needs to prove the employers wrong and show them that you are competent. A C.V represents yourself to the potential employers thus it needs to have positive representations of your qualifications and experience. Your C.V and covering letter should be outstanding; it is not something that you can work on over night but your input of time and energy. You need to gather your thoughts and reflect on your career and gaps in your careers and experience. Eileen, another presenter from CCDU, mentioned a lot of skills which are required in the work place such as presentation skills, problem solving skills, decision making, development focus etc. You need to reflect on these skills and see where the vacancy position suits you.

I find all these presentations very inspiring and motivating. I believe by the end of this month my mind will be flooding with knowledge. But one funny thing about all this is that all this knowledge we are getting from the WOW is irrelevant, what is relevant is how we are going to apply it.