Friday, February 29, 2008

Absa Appoints a New Manager

-Linda Jaquet-

"I have worked hard for everything I have achieved and I have never stopped dreaming,” Rose-Marie Ewerts told me when I congratulated her on being appointed by Absa as their new manager. Prince Albert is a one-bank town, so it is important that the right person be the manager of that bank. Absa has certainly made a smart move.

“I was as surprised as the next person at my promotion, but at the same time, I’ve always tried to give of my best and worked hard and loved a challenge,” Rose-Marie told the Friend soon after hearing of her appointment in early February. “I am over the moon at starting in my first managerial position here and who knows where the future may lead!” she said.

Rose-Marie’s selection came after two days of tough assessments in Port Elizabeth, with twenty-two other banking colleagues from the Eastern Cape – she was the youngest in the group – who had also applied for the same position. “I felt that everything went wrong from the start, but that just spurred me on!” she says with a twinkle in her eye. She has the same attitude to The Grumblers, who feel not up to the job.
Anyone who has ever dealt with Rose-Marie at the bank will attest to her professionalism and self-confidence even under trying circumstances. These are qualities she will have to draw on even more in her new role, with her increased responsibilities and exposure to diverse clientele, as well as the demands of the banking world. Rose-Marie stresses that humility is also important when working so closely with staff and clients.

Rose-Marie began working as a teller for Absa in Oudtshoorn, her home town, in 2001, after she’d completed a Business Management diploma at the Peninsula Technikon. She was sent to Absa’s Prince Albert branch on relief for two weeks over the Christmas period in 2002 due to a shortage of personnel. The two weeks have since stretched to over five years! While she found that her teller’s job did not really test her, looking back she is very grateful to former Absa bank manager, Hein van Huyssteen, for pushing her to reach her potential. She told the Friend: “It is because of Hein that I am a bank manager today.” He was the first person she called after she’d been told of her appointment.

“In recent years, Absa in Prince Albert hasn’t been able to fulfil its social investment commitment to the community because, quite simply, we have just not had enough hands and therefore not enough time. But this is going to change, in spite of our tiny budget for such things,” Rose-Marie told the Friend. She has already pledged the bank’s support for a local soccer tournament to be held in March.

Rose-Marie practises what she preaches: she serves on the board of ABET, an NGO that provides skills training for adults and is also involved with the local business women’s forum. She is also conscious of maintaining a balance between her professional and private lives and is the proud mother of eight-year old, Heinrich.

No comments: