THE LAST WORLD

Q&A Waheed Adam executive chairperson iTouch

14 July 2022

 

 

 

 

What was your big career break?
At the age of 19, I moved on from the outbound call centre into the sales team of the same company. It started off as a challenge to the sales manager at the time as I thought his team should be doing better. However, the role became something I thoroughly enjoyed and embraced full time, giving up my studies as a lawyer. I became the top salesperson for the next few years and assisted in training new staff. But as it was in South Africa, a person of colour was not given growth opportunities while traditional management were not as young as 21 either. With this double whammy of possible stagnation, I decided to leave the company at the age of 22 and start my own business. This decision changed my life forever, and needless to say, for the better. And this brings me to a saying that lived with me ever since; “through tragedy comes opportunity”.

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CRITICAL COMMS

Critical communications: dealing with disaster

12 July 2022

 

 

Recent floods in parts of South Africa have caused widespread devastation – putting critical communications under the spotlight. Robert Shepherd speaks to those keeping the continent connected

The tragedy of the recent floods in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province brought critical communications to the fore – but not necessarily for the right reasons. Devastating landslides and gushing water damaged or completely destroyed north of 900 base stations for MTN and Vodacom alone. Not only did the ‘act of God’ and the resultant impact on the province’s infrastructure highlight the immediate benefits of a flexible internet telephony network, but many businesses were also left without critical communications to their employees.

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Q&A

Q&A

13 May 2022

Richard Jacklin, director of sales, ViaLite

Richard Jacklin, director of sales, ViaLite

What was your big career break?

When I became a ghostbuster and I don’t really believe in ghosts! My career was going along quite nicely; apprenticeship, degree, graduate engineering, engineering manager etc., probably similar path to many folks. One night I was watching television and a programme called “Most Haunted”, an entertainment show where ghost hunters scare themselves stupid in a spooky house, and they showed these bright white sparks being captured on video. At that time I was working on a project for a very large US automobile company and I’d invented a simple device that measured negative ion fields from electric discharge – a spark. The available negative ion detector units on the market at the time were priced at approximately $1,000, but I could produce and sell a unit for $50. I phoned up a few ghost clubs and bingo, I had the start of my own business. I ran this business for about 3 years and covered all aspects of marketing, sales, production, new product development, logistics, shipping – basically everything. 

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RENEWABLE ENERGY

The long road to going green

11 April 2022

Energy, climate change and the environment continue to make headlines and the telecom sector is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to pollution. Robert Shepherd finds out what African telcos and towers are doing about going green

The environment is always – pardon the pun – a hot topic. From climate change and the filth that we continue to pump into the air, to tenacious campaigners gluing themselves to trains, there’s always something to furrow the global brow.

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