The strength of a country’s health system will be tested when emergencies like the outbreak of a pandemic occur. To identify a country’s health care system strong, it has to fulfill at least four basic elements. First, it has to improve public health. Then when people get sick and go to health centers, they have to get proper services. The third element is that the health service provided to people should be affordable. That means with reasonable cost, everyone should get good medical services. The final element is that the system has to ensure the safety of health professionals.

Learning and development (L & D) has continued to be the most mission critical and expensive human resource management function. Companies spend millions of dollars to fast track talent development. According to Deloitte insight, nearly every CEO and CHRO report that their companies are not developing skills fast enough or leaders deeply enough. In today’s highly competitive global economy and intensely competitive talent market, the C-suite clearly understands that companies that do not constantly upgrade skills and rapidly build leaders will not be able to execute their business plans. In today’s business environment, learning is an essential tool for engaging employees, attracting and retaining top talent, and developing long-term leadership for the company. However, research has shown that money spent on L & D is often wasted.

The Harvard Business Review surveyed business leaders in 2014 to know if they think employee engagement is a pre – condition for the success of an organization. About 71Pct of them said employee engagement was critical to the business success of their organizations, but only 24Pct of these same leaders said their workforces were highly engaged. This difference is called the engagement gap. The Gallup Employee Engagement Survey revealed that neither employees nor managers are engaged. Only 30Pct of employees are engaged and only 35Pct of managers are engaged at work. This means that if you put 10 people in a room, chances are seven of them are not happy to go to work in the morning. This is alarming!

Back in high school, one of the things that I still remember clearly is a saying by a young African American girl which was posted on one of the school’s buildings: “Go to college, continue your knowledge to be a person, smart, brave and true for if they can make penicillin out of moldy cheese, they surely can make something out of you.” Since childhood, families insist that their children have to go to college. It is a key to a successful life. Students will be in the dark without a college degree. So, people are encouraged to study, day in and day out.

The financial sector in Ethiopia, and particularly banks, do hardly any work towards developing future CEOs. You might argue that this is anecdotal evidence, but I have surveyed various bank executives to find out if there is an ongoing, constant, and systematic process of development and discernment. Rather, I have found out that it is a time – limited event which it is not driven by the strategy and core values of the banks, and it does involve the intentional engagement of all of board members. To be specific, most banks, for instance, grapple with CEO succession when there is a real need to find a CEO.

In the past, we hardly have women on boards in Ethiopia. It is true that the developed nations report that they are committed to promote diversity. But that commitment has not been translated in to meaningful progress. Prime Minster Abiy Ahmed (PhD), however, defied the odds by appointing women to make up half of his cabinets. This huge turnaround caused a spark in a country where men have a mounting presence in top government positions. Undoubtedly, this has a far reaching consequence with regards to solving the boardroom diversity challenge.

Ethiopian Business Review | EBR is a first-class and high-quality monthly business magazine offering enlightenment to readers and a platform for partners.

2Q69+2MM, Jomo Kenyatta St, Addis Ababa

Tsehay Messay Building

Contact Us

+251 961 41 41 41
Addis Maleda