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‘This is not leadership’ says Rebosa

MAIN IMAGE: Jan le Roux, CE of Rebosa.

Last week the property industry was shocked to learn that Mamodupi Mohlala, the CEO of the Estate Agency Affairs Board, sued an employee for defamation and bullying. Jan le Roux, chief executive of industry body Rebosa, weighs in on the latest news involving the CEO.

Our industry has been bombarded with emails from whistle blowers, rumours of management issues at the EAAB, criticism of management styles and non-compliance with audit requirements.

It seems that the board of the EAAB is kicking the ball down the road but fortunately the Human Settlements Minister has involved herself and we do hope that the issues raised will be properly investigated and acted upon if justified.

Read more: Minister wants action on allegations against EAAB CEO

As outsiders it’s hard to determine all the facts but in what seems to be defiance and disregard of some of the issues raised, the CEO of the EAAB has now decided to sue one of her employees for defamation. The papers filed accompanied by video is on the public record and can be perused.

One wishes you had the comfort of knowing that the legal fees will not be invoiced to the EAAB.

The Twitter feed accompanying the video is equally enlightening – it is worth while watching as one can sometimes learn by observation how to handle issues and sometimes how not to.

A screen grab of the twitter feed on the video.

On a video shared on social media, one sees a young man, Tumisho Motsepe (who has been working at the EAAB for 5 years or more as an IT technician), clearly in an agitated state of mind, in a meeting with his CEO, Mamodupi Mohlala. He interestingly enough finds it necessary to introduce himself and to mention his job description from which one can only deduce that he anticipated the CEO not knowing him, nor what he does.

He then shares his concerns with her, the sort of feedback a CEO would normally appreciate receiving so as to be able to address.

His helpless frustration is evident. His threat, if you can call it that – to tell the world how he feels – is empty and would hardly have been noticed was it not for this lawsuit.

Equally interesting, the CEO does not ask for any further information nor does she spend any time addressing the concerns. One cannot help but to assume from the questions asked and the video taken, that the CEO had no interest in the young man’s concerns.

The opportunity to determine why Tumisho feels like this and why he believes that many others feel the same way is wasted. No effort is made to put his mind at rest nor to explain why he might not be seeing things clearly. He is not managed or coached.

One wonders, is this about Tumisho, about defamation or is it an effort to subdue others – to ensure blind obedience and suppress discontent?

Tumisho makes at least this point – we are not observing leadership.

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