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Welcome back onsite: Collaborating in-person at our workshop in Nairobi

Making the perfect pitch, building valuable connections, and identifying drivers of organizational culture – these were the key issues brought to the fore at the social entrepreneur’s get-together in Nairobi. After a hiatus due to the pandemic, this was the first in-person workshop for empowering people. Network members Sunken LimitedTakaTaka SolutionsMace Foods, Kwangu Kwako Ltd., North Star Alliance, Bidhaa Sasa, WeTu, and Whave Solutions

“To mime your business”, was the perfect icebreaker to create a welcoming and collaborative atmosphere and to set the stage for productive and engaging discussions that were about to follow throughout the day.

Whave Solutions miming and Sunken Ltd., North Star Alliance and Mace Foods guessing the service provided.

The workshop was divided into two highly interactive parts. In the first session, the participants discussed how to make the best of the ‘10th Africa Sankalp Summit’, which commenced in the subsequent days after our get-together in Nairobi. The summit is known as Africa’s largest convening of impact entrepreneurship and sustainable development, and is known as a place for networking, and meeting new partners as well as investors. 

The founders exchanged their experiences of how to approach investors, who can be the right person to talk to or what can be the one convincing line that catches the attention of the person in front of you. The entrepreneurs presented their individual pitches before each other and provided constructive feedback and improvement suggestions. “The participatory group approach during the pitch preparation session was top notch. It was a great workshop to network and connect with fellow innovators and above all prepare for the next day at Sankalp Forum Africa Summit,” added one social entrepreneur onsite.

Social enterprises of the empowering people. Network discussing their current challenges regarding organizational culture.

In the next session on ‘organizational culture’ the participants were introduced to the importance of the issue in their day-to-day work, how it affects their processes, their performance, and their organization as such.

One big take-away was that it’s not worth the time and effort to cope with organizational culture if it is not a value-add priority for the business. But even worse than losing effort and time is the fact that promises don’t match actions, measures can be short-lived and even backfire, if it is not a topic that is constantly monitored and taken care of within the organization.  

After a day full of practicing, peer-exchange, and valuable feedback the day came to an end when the entrepreneurs got the chance to introduce their business the next morning.

I never thought about the full extent of organizational culture. A bad organizational culture affects your workload and your well-being. It has such a deep impact on you. A good culture, on the other hand, enables us to evolve and succeed.

A social entrepreneur involved in the workshop
About the author
Anna Balas
Anna Balas

Anna joined Siemens Stiftung’s Social Entrepreneurship team in 2018. She works on continuously developing the Capacity Development offering for social enterprises within the empowering people. Network. Anna holds an MSc in Sustainable Resource Management from the Technical University of Munich and a BA in International and Cultural Business Studies from the University of Passau (Germany) and the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain). Anna likes to cook and travel and can strongly relate to Sabine’s fear of spiders. You can follow her on Twitter at @AnnaBalas78 and contact her via email.
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Article last edited on: May 29, 2023