Antoinette Greeff joins Isizwe as CHRO


HR is not just a profession but a true vocation for me, says the incoming CHRO

Former HR director at frozen food company Nature’s Garden, Antoinette Greeff has joined Project Isizwe in the capacity of CHRO.

Project Isizwe, founded by former CEO of Vodacom Alan Knott-Craig in 2013, is a non-profit organisation that connects low-income communities across the country to subsidised fibre internet. Since inception, the company has successfully launched such projects in Tshwane, and Kayamandi in Stellenbosch Western Cape.

Antoinette, who joined the company on March 15, says for her, HR is not just a profession but a true vocation. “My feeling about joining Isizwe is one of gratitude. It has been the most sincere experience of having value-aligned colleagues and spaces that prescribe making an impact for the better on a daily basis.

“The idea of rolling out affordable, pay-as-you-go fibre into townships to break the divide in access to information, education, informal and micro economy drives this team to serve and be better every day. This in turn allows us to unpack and revisit ideas about how we want to impact from a human capital side.”

Antoinette explains that she started her career as an IR consultant at Labournet, which gave her a very good technical legislative foundation. “From there I moved into a generalist role at the DCD Group, which really allowed me to experience the full HR value chain. When I joined BSi Steel as an human resources business partner in 2015, I experienced how HR and culture drive business performance and had mentors who really impacted my development, not only professionally, but also personally.”

In 2018, she joined Nature’s Choice as HR director when it was transitioning from a family-owned business to private equity shareholding structure. “I essentially had to build HR from scratch and move from an HR-compliance focused approach to an HR business partnering approach.”

In her new role, Antoinette’s short-term goals are mainly focused on compliance and scaling the pipeline to ensure that the company has enough human resources available to execute on its objectives. “However, we do understand that this cannot be our only focus, as we need to solidify our identity, which is what our internal and external stakeholders will recognise and identify us with.”

She says she will be actively working on identifying and understanding her own and her colleagues’ biases and how those impacts the programmes and processes that she wishes to implement in the business.
“As our whole business is geared around breaking down the technical and accessibility divide, it allows us to gain a bigger understanding into the way we as South Africans think and interact on a daily basis, not only socially, but professionally in the workplace as well, and that in itself gives Isizwe a very unique opportunity to really take the concept of being of service to others to the next level.”

She also will be looking into the attraction and retention of talent. “I am hoping to overcome this by identifying and developing a unique South-African contextualised employee experience that will unleash the workforce while leveraging innovation and creativity from diversity across the human capital value chain.”



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