CHRO South Africa hosts first online community conversation in the time of Covid-19 

HR executive community building becomes more important than ever in times of social isolation. 

With the Coronavirus (Covid-19) having everyone on high alert, the CHRO Summit that was meant to be held on 17 March became an onlne CHRO SA Comunity Conversation in which HR leaders shared their concerns about the impact of the virus. Attended by Royal Bafokeng Holdings human capital manager Ditiro Chesalokile, Tsebo Group organisational effectiveness director Elanie Kruger, Globeleq HR manager Laura James, and Multichoice Group chief people officer Fhulufhelo Badugel, HR leaders discussed how Covid-19 was affecting them both personally and professionally.

It was clear from the onset that concerns around the virus were very real, with each individual providing a glimpse into the actions that they were taking both within their families and their organisations. The common thread throughout the one-hour engagement was that HR had to take the lead as the voice of reason. While business leaders worry about the impact on their business and employees worry about their health and job security, the HR leaders felt responsible for responding to the pandemic with empathy while also being mindful of the fact that ongoing business performance remained paramount.

CFO Enterprises MD Joël Roerig moderated the session, explaining that these were indeed trying times, particularly for a business whose purpose it is to bring people together. That said, he said if there was ever a time that the executive community needed to come together to share ideas and lessons for overcoming challenges, this was it. 

“Never has the community been more important than in this time of social distancing, fear and uncertainty. The CFO South Africa and CHRO South Africa communities are stepping up in the coming weeks and months to be there in times that connections, support, perspective, consolation and fresh ideas are needed most,” he said.

“As long as the Covid-19 restrictions are in place, we will host online CFO and CHRO sessions every week. We will try out various formats and invite the community to participate and grow together. Some of the rescheduled events will ALSO take place on the initial date: online, with participation from the originally scheduled speakers and panelists and including focused online breakaway sessions.”