Mbali Nwoko is an award winning commercial farmer, entrepreneur, speaker and columnist. She is the CEO of Green Terrace which is an agricultural business producing high value vegetable crops supplying to leading retailers, food processors and fresh produce markets across South Africa.
1. Have you always had leadership qualities and are leaders born or made?
Yes and I think we are all born with the innate ability to lead, and life has a funny way of showing us, through experience, what type of leaders we are and choose to become.
2. Define a great leader—what are some traits you think great leaders possess?
Great leaders inspire others, they are able to bring calmness and hope in the midst of adversity. Great leaders know how to cultivate the greatness in others allowing them to be leaders in their own right.
3. What are some strategies that can help women achieve a more prominent role in their organizations?
Discipline and focus of what they want to achieve. Women tend to downplay their influence, power and value that they bring to organisations and if they can just focus on these strengths they would become even more prominent and hold strategic positions in organisations.
4. What’s one leadership lesson you’ve learned in your career? I have learnt that its ok for leaders to show a side of vulnerability, we are human after all.
5. What are, from your perspective, the biggest challenges for women in leadership roles?
I think we sometimes have a challenge in embracing our femininity. When we are placed in these leadership roles, we often want to match up to our male counterparts, however we should embrace who we are as women and know that there is power in diversity.
6. What are the 3 Pearls Of Wisdom from your journey and life in general that you’d like to share with our members to encourage them in their careers.
My message is for people to embrace change in their lives and never stop evolving. We should choose to be in positions that serve our personality and allows us to be authentic.