Ethiopian Business Review

The war for ‘heads’ – also known as talent – has been raging for many years and the manner headhunters ‘poach’ people is getting tougher as the prominence of human capital is growing in Ethiopia. Evidently, people are key in any organization. That is why Dee Hock, founder and former CEO of VISA, Inc., once said that an organization, no matter how well designed, is only as good as the people who live and work in it. Hence, a strategic differentiator, and challenge, for a firm is how it can attract, recruit, develop, motivate and retain its key personnel.

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Just Few weeks back, I was talking to Engida Mekonnen, a long-time family friend who runs a butcher shop with a bar and restaurant as a single business entity in a nearby neighborhood in Northern Addis Ababa. Many of his customers love the expertly sliced raw meat that he butters generously and serves with a mix of hot and spicy sauce. His business unit, which is a replica of similar business outlets propping up in the city, stocks different types of alcoholic drinks. 

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The link between economic growth and human wellbeing seems obvious. Indeed, as measured by gross domestic product, economic growth is widely viewed as the ultimate development objective. But it is time to rethink this approach.

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