People may forget wat you say.
They may forget what you do.
But they never forget how you make them feel.
During the pandemic, farmers have become a beacon of hope and inspiration for South Africans. These are people who have devoted their love and their lives to the service of others. But there is a burden that comes with that too, which takes its toll. There are high-risk decisions that need to be made in an uncertain world, opportunities that must be captured, threats that must be dealt with and people whose jobs must be saved. This all needs to take place while you’re perhaps feeling lonely, stressed, concerned about your family and loved ones, and keeping your own psychological and physiological health intact.
It’s a heavy load to carry, and when we ignore the burden, when we don’t speak about it, when we don’t collectively acknowledge it, it grows larger and heavier.
The year 2020 was an all-out attack on people’s psyche and 2021 did not let up. The only difference is that we entered the Covid period of 2020 with some reserve level of energy and grit. Now we have ended 2021 carrying the pain and exhaustion from two years.
The year 2021 pushed the limits of our mental stamina. It is one thing to deal with a severe change in environment and move into reaction mode, but it is quite another to live with it much longer than anticipated. Especially if there is no clear deadline in place.
MAAR WAT HET ONS GELEER UIT 2020 en 2021?
Ons het die voorreg gehad om te kon aanhou boer. Maar ons is ook herinner dat ons almal die aarde deel, dieselfde lug inasem, en dat ons dit moet koester, wardeer, en bewaar.
Ons het ons bravade verloor oor môre en herontdek hoe broos ons eintlik is, hoe kosbaar die lewe is, en ons is herinner om nie die lewe as vanselfsprekend te aanvaar nie.
Dit het ons ook gedwing tot introspeksie wat ons die geleentheid gegee het tot soveel nuwe self-insigte en perspektiewe. Dit het ons ook die geleentheid gegee om te fokus op dit wat mooi en goed is en idees hieruit te ontgin vir ‘n beter toekoms
Gedurende hierdie tyd het die mensdom en poltici se oë ook oopgegaan oor die belangrikheid van die boer en van landbou in Suid-Afrika.
Die pandemie het ons gedwing om vir ‘n wyle as ‘n nasie saam te staan teen die virus. Dit was egter van korte duur en sekere gebeure het die werklikhede van ons samewlewing weer na die oppervlak laat kom, soos die rassisme en radikalisme versterk deur fascistiese uitsprake, skreiende korrupsie, toenemende plaasmoorde, die totale verval van die platteland en die regering se totale onvermoë en geploeter met alles wat hulle probeer doen.
LOOKING FORWARD : THE FUTURE IS NOW
Sernick literally went through hell during the last two years. Apart from the pandemic which we had to deal with, we lost two great friends and colleagues. Both Christo Faasen and Ntala Molaba were giants in their own right and played major roles in the growth of Sernick. We honour their legacies.
During the same time we “lost” Carel Serfontein (CEO) who is battling with illness and it is unlikely that he will play any future role in Sernick going forward.
But the trauma and hardship we experienced did not stop us from looking forward into the future and dream. During 2021 we developed a new growth strategy for the challenges that lie ahead. We are embarking on some major expansions to better serve our customers on the animal feed side including some exciting projects on the beef side.
We also decided to appoint an experienced interim Chief Executive Officer for two years who is starting on 10 January 2022. We welcome Henk Greeff to our team whose main responsibility will be to assist the Board in restructuring the Sernick Group and implement the new growth strategy.
Henk is an experienced business leader with a wide spectrum of experience across industry types and receiver of many accolades of achievement and exceptional performance. He served in Senior Management and Executive positions in an array of Executive management and directors’ positions in the following industries:
- Strategy and management consulting (Executive Director – Chairman and CEO)
- Listed Retail and Consumer finance (Group Executive Director: Strategy)
- Geospatial Technologies (Executive director – Chairman and CEO)
In addition, he served on a number of boards as non – Executive Chairman and Director including:
- Market research (Director)
- Human Resources (Chairperson)
- Longevity industry (Director)
- Geospatial Technologies (Chairperson)
- Agricultural food manufacturing (Chairperson)
- Strategy consulting (Chairperson)
Education and professional career development
University of Pretoria
- Henk completed his PhD (Ed. Management) in 1991 at the University of Pretoria
- He has completed the following professional executive programmes (local and international)):
- University of Stellenbosch Business School: Programme in strategic transformation. (1995)
- University of Stanford (USA) Business School: Programme in Change and Renewal. (2004)
- IMD Business School – Lausanne Switzerland: Advanced programme in Strategic Management (2010)
Henk is married to Ilse, an educational psychologist, and they have two children and a granddaughter.
Ons opregte dank en waardering gaan uit aan:
- Al ons wonderlike kliënte en dierbare vriende. Sonder julle sou ons niks wees nie
- Al ons verskaffers
- Ons passievolle kollegas en personeel
- Almal in ons netwerk
Dit is ‘n geweldige voorreg om met elkeen geassosieerd te wees. Dankie vir almal se bydrae om van landbou en van Sernick ‘n beter plek te maak. Ons sien uit om die pad vorentoe saam met julle te loop.
Mag die Genade van ons Hemelse Vader, wat die Skepping en ons hande vashou, wat alles nuut maak, met elkeen wees in 2022.