Port Elizabeth – WOMEN of Coca-Cola Beverages SA have joined a growing ‘virtual village’ of their sisters as the company launches a women’s network called ‘Women@CCBSA’, in commemoration of Women’s Month.
Through Women@CCBSA, the company seeks to connect women to each other and also a shared resource of tools, case studies and practical guides to help women achieve their full potential in the workplace, in the home and in the broader community.
“CCBSA is a proudly South African company which understands the challenges faced by our country in the past and still in the present, not least being the disempowerment of women and girl children,” says Managing Director Velaphi Ratshefola. “As a company, we have committed ourselves to the empowerment of women and we are working hard to create a conducive environment for women to thrive,” he added.
Public Affairs and Communications Director Tshidi Ramogase said the company wants to ensure that women do not feel alone in their journey, and that they understand there have been others like them. “For instance, we want to support women at CCBSA to ensure they never have to make the difficult choice of family or career. We want to give them the requisite support and tools to successfully manage both – and for them to never feel inadequate and demeaned if they choose one over the other,” says Ramogase.
Formed out of the merger of six companies in 2016 with a staff complement of 7500, a key focus for CCBSA is to create a company that reflects South Africa, where women not only feel empowered, but they have the right resources to achieve their career aspirations.
Women@CCBSA, aims to help female employees get exposure to greater training opportunities, meet real-life women role models, get a chance to show off their skills and learn how to rise through the ranks, without losing the integrity of their leadership style.
“Through this initiative, we are creating a virtual village-like network,” explains Ramogase. “We want this network of powerful women to uplift each other and our communities and develop the next generation of female leaders. Often times women feel alone, hence our commitment to create a safe space for them to talk, share and learn.”
“The research is unequivocal,” says Ramogase, “having more women in an organisation is imperative for any business or organisation. Companies with more women at board or senior management levels are the companies that perform the best, because they adapt more quickly to changing social and consumption trends – women are 51 percent of the population in SA and make 71 percent of all the household purchase decisions. So for us, it makes business sense.”
The launch in Port Elizabeth will be followed by further launches throughout Women’s Month in the remaining seven CCBSA regions.
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