All things human resources

Pamela Xaba

Pamela Xaba, human resources director at Ford Motor Company of Sub-Saharan Africa, tells us what her job entails. By Kwanele Mathebula

My career at Ford has been on a trajectory. I joined the company in December 2012 as an HR shared services manager. In 2015, I was offered the opportunity to work as the compensation and benefits manager for Ford Middle East and Africa in Dubai. This was my first time working outside of South Africa, and it was a huge learning curve. I spent 18 months in the position before returning home, where I was promoted to HR manager of manufacturing at the Silverton Assembly plant. In 2017, I was promoted to HR director at Ford Motor Company of Sub-Saharan Africa.

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My day-to-day activities see me deal with various stakeholders.  I manage all the HR activities such as learning and development, business operations, labour affairs, health and safety as well as training. My long-term goal is to grow in the field, and use this platform to inspire and empower others to achieve their own goals.

Self-development through mentorship was a key ingredient to the success of my career. Now it is time to pay it forward. 

This was a difficult environment for me to settle into.  The first few months into my position were tough. My biggest challenge was finding my voice and learning to speak up for myself. But, with time and through the organisation’s support, things started to change. Through mentoring and coaching courses, I began to gain a better understanding of people, and how to handle them.

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My biggest career highlight is the position I currently hold. I’ve grown a lot and have become a better leader because of it. There is a level of trust and loyalty between the employees and myself, which I hold in high regard. It is good to know that people trust me and value my input.