Career advancement challenges

Mkwalo, Lumkile
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This study was conducted in an attempt to uncover the reason for the uneven pace of promotion for black African managers in the South African work place, Employment Equity Commission (2008). While many previous studies of the same subject focused on the executive management level, this study sought to include the lower levels of management. The study was conducted through in-depth, one-on-one interviews with twenty black African managers from large South African corporate companies, and their inputs were triangulated with input from six supervisors and six employment agents. The supervisors and agents were sampled to include both male and female white, Indian and coloured respondents. The study found that, while black African managers were technically competent, they were hamstrung by prejudice in the workplace, poor performance management, poor career planning and their inability to network effectively, especially with senior, white colleagues. The transformational legislation meant to help their career aspirations was also poorly enforced by the government and consequently indifferently implemented by the corporations. This left them without concrete developmental plans that would lead to measurable career progression. New negative trends included the perception of an afro-pessimistic media, diluted jobs, being surrounded and outnumbered, inequitable expectation, ethnic hierarchies of oppression, political coyness, double battery, room-for-one syndrome and acceleration to the abyss. A positive trend included the slow emergence of a one cosmopolitan culture among young managers across all racial lines which was beginning to blur previously-held stereotypes
Black managers , Career planning , Black economic empowerment