The game-changing joy of flexibility
November 18, 2022 •SAPRO
For Kedibone Masango, flexibility is the gold standard when it comes to the benefits of work-life balance.
Less stress, better mental health and an exciting career that is financially rewarding – what’s not to like? That’s what convinced Kedibone Masango, a Senior Audit Consultant at SAPRO, to join the organisation.
Having previously worked for a large consulting firm and, prior to that, in the public sector, she was quickly seconded to two offshore external audits – one for a UK-based audit, tax, advisory and risk firm, and the second for a professional services firm in the US. So far, it’s been the experience of a lifetime.
“This has been an exhilarating phase in my life and, as demanding as busy season can be, I am looking forward to the next assignment,” she says. “The thing about working for SAPRO is that busy season is defined and finite, whereas in other organisations it can be indefinite, which doesn’t leave much room for work-life balance. For someone who equally prioritises the demands of her career and the demands of her personal life, SAPRO is the ideal environment.”
Another aspect of this way of working, and one which she values deeply, is that SAPRO prepares PROs for each assignment they take on. “Secondments are a brilliant way to learn new skills, build capabilities and open yourself up to new experiences, but preparation is key to a successful assignment,” she says. “We are provided with in-depth information about each client’s team culture and working style, so that we know what environment we will be working in before we start. We are also encouraged to ask questions and to call for help if needed. It’s all about being set up for success.”
At present, Kedibone is fulfilling an internal role at SAPRO, as a project manager in the marketing division, while she awaits her next external secondment. Responsible for successfully taking marketing projects from start to finish, she is enjoying learning diverse kinds of skills in an area of the business that aims to promote SAPRO’s unique offering. Leading projects is helping her develop soft skills that will come in handy during the next busy season, such as leadership, time management, budgeting, people management and much more.
Although she describes herself as an introvert, Kedibone’s experience of working virtually with different people has been extremely positive and she has nothing but praise for the whole experience.
“Everyone has been friendly and supportive. I’ve had to learn to work within different systems and teams, and I have felt nothing but a sense of belonging and being part of an inclusive, cohesive culture. As hard as we worked during busy season, I had great relationships with the people I supervised and those I reported to. Everyone was helpful and supportive, especially when I was trying to get my head around new systems. Now that I have a project management role at SAPRO, I am learning even more and developing new skills so that I can take advantage of new opportunities.”
Kedibone recalls that when she joined SAPRO her son was just five months old. Thanks to the support of her family, she was able to work while also having some time to spend with him. Post busy season, she was also granted enough leave to rest and recuperate. Time with her family is a key form of replenishment in her life.
She says the importance of mental wellness cannot be overstated. “At SAPRO there is real commitment to employees’ well-being. The company is firm in its belief that mental and physical health helps us achieve our best, in all aspects of our lives.
“Living a balanced life means different things to different people. For me, it’s about family time, eating well and exercising. I enjoy running as it lifts my mood and makes me a happier person. The flexibility of my work life allows me to fit in time for exercise, even on the busiest days.”
There’s time for fun too. As part of SAPRO’s ongoing community upliftment programme, the company partnered with JACASS (Johannesburg Article Clerk Association) on the 2022 Fun Run to end period poverty. “Events like these are not only for a good cause, but they also help us to get out there and keep connected with our peers. It’s another one of the ways that SAPRO proves people are more than just numbers,” she says.
Having grown up in a rural village, she understands the challenges that young people face when they start university. The environment is unfamiliar and suddenly they are being lectured in English. For this reason, Kedibone mentors young people from rural areas who are working towards an accounting degree.
“Our profession teaches us to be intentional about what we do,” she says. “When you are intentional, you make decisions and take action according to what's important to you. It means being clear upfront about the outcomes you want to achieve. To make the most of working for SAPRO, it pays to be intentional, to know what you want to achieve, to prepare and do the research and then to go for it. It’s incredibly satisfying.”
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