#CareerFocus With Mokgadi Phaahla Talent Acquisition Trainee At Engen

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1. Tell us a bit about yourself?

My name is Mokgadi Phaahla, I was born and bred in Limpopo and I have 2 younger siblings. I was brought up in a Christian oriented family. My family is my biggest support system. I attended high school at S.J van der Merwe THS, and after matric I did my undergrad degree in Human Resource Management at the North West University ( Potchefstroom). I then did my Honours in HR. I would say I am a semi-extrovert, I enjoy being around people and I enjoy my own company as well. I am a creative, I have always been drawn to making art(drawing and painting) and at some point in my life I thought that would be my career but I still believe I can be an artist.

2. What work do you do?

I am a Talent Acquisition Trainee in the HR department, my daily duties consist mainly of advertising, shortlisting and interviewing candidates and so on in search for talent for the organisation.

3. How long have you been in the industry?

I have only been exposed to this industry recently, I got the most amazing opportunity to join the Engen Graduate Programme last year December. So I would say I am still a new-bee in this industry, however, I have learned so much in such a short space of time.

4. Has your work always been your passion? Tell us why?

When I was still studying my passion for HR was on a neutral level because you are only exposed to the theoretical part of your work. My passion for recruitment became stronger as I realised the gap in unemployment, especially in the youth. It pains me to see a lot of people my age struggling to get employment even with their qualification. This drives my passion to help others make their dreams come true.

5. Being a women in the industry – what does it take?

Being a women in the recruitment industry takes a lot of patience, you work with a lot of people with different personalities and their way of doing things. When I first started, I didn’t realise that communication skills is also pivotal in this role. You get to interact with different people in different roles from middle to top management therefore. you need to stand your ground. We all know that roles such as HR are stereotypically known as women populated roles but, I am happy that things have changed and there is gender equality within roles.

6. What has been the most difficult challenge of your career?

I believe the most difficult challenge has been accepting an offer very far away from my biggest support system. This was a turning point in my career because this taught me to believe in myself more, and what I am capable of. I told myself that there is a reason my God opened this opportunity for me, sometimes you need to leave your comfort zone to see your full potential and I can testify that I am seeing the fruits of believing in myself.

7. What advice do you have for other women in your industry?

My advice is simple, believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle. You are not in the wrong era; God made you for a time such as this because you a more than capable.

8. Plans for the future?

My plan is to grow strong and confident in this space of Talent Acquisition and, I also want to explore other HR functions. I want to further my dreams of owning an art gallery and making more art. I also want to create employment for the youth by increasing job opportunities.

Self-belief and confidence key to success – Mokgadi Phaahla

Engen employee Mokgadi Phaahla, who grew up in Lebowakgomo near Polokwane and matriculated from S.J Van Der Merwe Technical High School, holds the personal philosophy that “it doesn’t matter where you come from, you are more than capable of reaching whatever you set your mind to.”

The 23-year-old believes that it is important for women to believe in themselves.

“All it takes is confidence and believing in yourself,” says Mokgadi. “Just do what you can, with what you have, and where you are. “You don’t need to wait for the perfect time to do something, just start where you are and do the best you can.”

Today Mokgadi is a proud graduate of North-West University and holds a BCom Honours Degree in Human Resources.