This week we want to start by introducing our newest segment; Our Heroes in the Diaspora. We will be featuring Africans who are making a difference in the diaspora. To begin our series we are featuring a young Zimbabwean, Taz Mukorombindo, Founder and CEO of the Canterbury Business Association http://www.canterburybusiness.org.nz/ .
Taz Mukorombindo migrated to NZ in December 2002, having graduated a couple of years earlier with a Bachelor of Commerce from one of South Africa’s top Universities. With a background as a Systems Analyst he found it challenging to find a position in this field in New Zealand until he signed up for the Massey MBA Degree. His research focused on Government Business Services to Ethnic Entrepreneurs and Immigrants to NZ. In 2007 as a first year MBA student, Taz founded the Canterbury Business Association, a not for profit organisation which supports immigrants and refugees with employment and business services.
His latest project has been supporting ethnic business persons with information and support towards recovery post the Christchurch earthquakes. He has also initiated and runs the Migrant Mentoring Programme to assist immigrants with job search. In 2011, the Mentoring Programme has been selected by the Equal Employment Opportunities Trust for their Diversity Awards, recognising organizations that help to promote harmonious relations and diversity within New Zealand.”
In his own words,
Having completed my MBA in 2009, I was pretty sure I wanted to work in the public sector, to do projects in an NGO capacity, to provide skills and be a bridge for government initiatives and programmes that would help to better the lives of others. I have always had a passion to serve, and I guess you may say I subscribe to the Servant Leadership Model. This has increasingly become a passion and a call. The only difference is that with knowledge, some experience and skills, I feel competent to do this work on a larger scale than ever before.
Currently, I run a not for profit organization I founded in my student days, in 2007, to help immigrants with job search. On the back of the confidence I gained from my MBA research in which I looked at how government business services can be better targeted to ethnic and migrant entrepreneurs; I have expanded the scope of the organization and aiming to establish it from this year – a business services offering to support especially ethnic and migrant business persons, many who have been affected by the Christchurch earthquakes and have lost their livelihoods.
My work often gets me thinking about the broader causes of our endeavors as business persons. The question of purpose is, is it relevant in business? The debate, theoretical as it was back in MBA School, but is real now, is am I here just to make a profit, or is there a larger meaning to my endeavors. As an entrepreneur, I often realize my influence to shape the livelihoods of people, to inspire, to motivate and to assist them to reach their potential. It’s a responsibility I do not take lightly anymore; my responsibility to my community – and eventually to my country and to the world– it’s an endeavor I strive to achieve.
I often imagine that the person who carries the torch to light the flame for the Olympic Games, is themselves fit for the race, fit to run the race and to light the flame for others. It’s similar for me in business now. It’s not just about me anymore. I want to leave a legacy that outlasts the balance sheet and income statements I deal with daily, I want to see the measurable benefits in lives made better, in opportunities opened up for others cause of what I have done.
It’s a view I share with many of my colleagues, the best we can find in the business community, doing more than taking care of profits and balance sheets. (Courtesy of the Massey MBA Blog)