Skills development for retail growth
Retail management training and excellence were celebrated at the fifth annual W&RSETA Retail Management Development Programme (RMDP) certificate ceremony. Nine groups from across South Africa graduated at exclusive certificate ceremonies, with the Gauteng region showing the best performance this year.
Enterprises University of Pretoria (Enterprises UP) concluded another successful run of the RMDP in partnership with the Wholesale and Retail Sector Education and Training Authority (W&RSETA). ‘The year-long programme was challenging, but we are thankful to Enterprises UP, the University of Pretoria and the W&RSETA for their support,’ says Dr Chris Lombard, RMDP leader. ‘We are pleased to acknowledge the commitment and dedication shown by this year’s delegates,’ he adds.
The programme runs part-time over the course of the year, combining theory with practical workplace application, and teaching functional management and transformational leadership.
The purpose of the RMDP is to equip supervisors and middle managers with the skills necessary for effective management, and to provide them with an opportunity to advance their careers. The programme has had great success and participants often receive promotions in their respective companies.
One such success story is that of Samantha Pillay, who was promoted from senior store manager to brand manager of a cosmetics company during her time in the programme. ‘I believe it is through my experience in the RMDP and the vast amount of subject matter covered in the programme that I was able to adapt easily to this very different position,’ she says. ‘The course presenters really stood out as amazing facilitators, with such enthusiasm and passion that it was not difficult to stay engaged throughout the programme.’
Another satisfied delegate echoes Pillay’s sentiments: Mishanga Kombo says, ‘The most powerful way to develop the capabilities of people at work is through programmes like the RMDP.’ Kombo attended the Western Cape graduation ceremony. She describes the programme as ‘life changing’. Her parents flew all the way from Zambia to attend her graduation and personally thank the course lecturer, Dr Lombard.
Kombo continues: ‘It has been such a privilege to be a participant in this programme and to meet the professors and experts who continuously challenged us to practically apply and implement great ideas.’
The RMDP was introduced as a response to the lack of formal skills exhibited by middle managers in the wholesale and retail sector. To date the programme has 1 378 alumni and has gone a long way towards promoting retail as a career choice.
– Author Enterprises UP
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Delegates and course presenters from the 2016 Retail Management Development Programme (RMDP) who were hosted by the W&RSETA at the graduation ceremony at Emperors Palace in Gauteng