[Startup Interview] Kat Mrozi Guerreiro, Founder, Xaka Consulting, Mozambique
Xaka Consulting is a Mozambique startup that offers a bouquet of human resource services among them leadership and management programmes, soft skills for all type of work-force, quality control, procurement and business intelligence, international grants management, monitoring and evaluation processes.
It also provides specialized training services with a portfolio of more than 500 tailor made courses in 6 languages and local dialects. The startup’s founder Kat Mrozi Guerreiro explains.
Introduce your company
Xaka Consulting was incorporated in 2016 in Mozambique, as a response to the national market demand to have a professional training company that combine best international educational practices and local content.
Our carefully selected team includes experienced trainers in business and at the same time advanced in communication areas such as: Neurolinguistics, Coaching and Applied Social Psychology, that for more than 20 years share their passion for training.
We are a young and energetic start-up, always hungry to grow and to present new innovative ideas in learning.
Thanks to the confidence and trust of our clients from 2020 we were planned to operate on Pan-African level in countries like: Kenya, Nigeria or Ghana but due to the negative impact of Covid -19 we needed to restructure our organization to work better, work more effective and most of all to serve our clients with more competitive solutions.
Our Online Academy Training was especially created for companies in Africa as the answer to the global pandemic of COVID-19. Our team of experts and coaches is aware of the challenging environment for human capital nowadays, but we rely on the online training method of improving your soft and technical skills.
Our goal nowadays is to provide series of courses, the ones that we mastered till now, with the best learning tools using new technologies. It is a unique opportunity to motivate your teams, accelerate results and increase your sales. We are carefully prepared for new business models.
Our mission is to prepare the complexte plan of vocational trainings and soft skills, taking care of our partners with maximum effectiveness, in order to meet their needs within the scope of our job. We are a company that provides crisis management courses, through a quality service, within the agreed timing and at a fair price.
Our courses are a set of activities that aim at the theoretical and practical acquisition of knowledge, skills and attitudes. We are specialized in executive coaching, online sales, call centers, negotiation and communication online techniques, lean management, leadership and motivation of customer service teams and many more, which acts as a facilitator and supports any institution, recognized by the personalized and efficient service.
Who are the founders and what are their professional backgrounds?
Xaka Consulting was founded by two women, one from Mozambique and one from Poland who joined their forces and passion for better quality service and learning.
I am a lawyer specialized in International Relations and Development in Economics from the University of Oxford. For Xaka Consulting team our clients are our partners, we help them to motivate their teams and help them to grow their business via specialized training on different levels. From 2017 I was an official regional representative of the Polish - Portuguese chamber of commerce in Maputo. This required the ability to envision a new reality, up-to-date understanding of the broader issues affecting many different fields of expertise and cultural differences.
Before I moved to Mozambique I was for four years an Entrepreneur, trade expert in Portugal. In Lisbon I set up my own company which has now merged with Portuguese marketing firm. I was in charge of providing new business opportunities and internalization. From 2007 till 2011 I lived in Brussels (Belgium) and Strasbourg (France) working at the European Parliament as the Policy - Energy Advisor for the Vice-Chair of the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee. The last two years of my diplomatic career were mainly focused on the preparation of the Polish Presidency in the EU. My experience also includes working for a Danish Consultancy specialized in Communication and Public Affairs.
During that period I took part in many personal training programmes in the field of leadership techniques, media promotion, communication methods and public relations. I am fluent in Polish, English, Portuguese, Spanish and French.
How is your company financed?
The company is fully financed by me since incorporation. We are now applying for international funds to help implement our unique online learning solution platform GoTrainingAfrica that helps address the negative impacts of Covid-19.
What industry does your company operate in?
What in your opinion are the dynamics shaping human resources industry?
Human Capital in Africa has always been an interesting subject. In Africa more than anywhere else, we deal with rapidly growing demography with lack of wide access to educational solutions. For us the response to that are short professional trainings that we provide, even more significant now with Covid-19. This global pandemic has impacted the lives of each one of us. The new reality is that African New Order will never be the same.
The Socio-economic impact of it will be devastating and difficult to quantify. More than 90 per cent of companies, including those in HR, are small and micro family owned firms that may not survive in the near future. International organizations have already frozen their activities and it is just a matter of time before layoffs start to take place which comes with severe knockoff effects. We at Xaka Consulting want to prevent it and by our Online Academy of the Future - GoTrainingAfrica help people to gain skills, upgrade their knowledge, prepare for employment shifts, and gain new abilities.
Why did you start your company? What opportunities did you see?
Before you start any business or project you must answer why you want to do it. When I moved to Africa without knowing its culture and rhythm everything was new and difficult. Instead of seeing it as a problem I changed it into opportunity and that is how Xaka Consulting was created. Most of all to help international companies that enter Mozambican market with mind changing process, facilitating their daily work routine. Add that to my passion for education and learning and this mix resulted into an amazing team that shares my vision for the future.
What gives your company the competitive edge?
We are more than a training company, we are our clients’ partners helping them solve all their challenges, because we dream more than others think it is practical, we care more than others think is wise, we risk more than others think is safe and we always deliver more than our clients think is possible.
Who are your customers?
We mainly work with financial institutions like banks and insurance companies. Some of our clients include Societe Generale, First Capital Bank and BancABC. We have also worked with oil and gas companies like Mozambique Rovuma Venture or Galp and many others. We are now focusing our attention to any public or private company that want to implement our set of new online academy.
What does your company need in order to grow?
It will be rewarding if any governmental or international institutions see how hard we work, how we invest in local training and international certification. Many times we are out of the game due to the fact that we are a young company, not focusing a lot on result of our work and engagement. We are proud of who we are, of our successes, our moral conduct and ethics. As a CEO of a local company I see big international firms that come to Africa implementing the same global solutions and ignoring the local partners, maybe instead of treating us as competitors we could be considered as real partners that have deep knowledge of the national markets.
What is your growth strategy?
We want to go Pan African and with the help of international donors implement our platform - GoTrainingAfrica in each African country.
Where do you want to establish your footprint?
Our focus is at the entire Africa.
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