On the right career path

DSC_0195_SMEvodia Malebo has always been driven to deliver more than what is expected of her. Dedicated and hardworking, she is also not one to shy away from a challenge, which is possibly why she jumped at the opportunity of becoming an Associate General Accountant AGA(SA).

Having worked for the Auditor-General (AGSA) and two of the big four audit and accounting firms (EY and PwC), Evodia has always been results-driven.

Currently the Director: Finance and Budget Management at the Department of Human Settlements, she believes her successful registration as an AGA(SA) has added significant value to her career and played an important role in her professional recognition. “For me, it means I am on the right track with my career growth and development,” she says proudly.

Evodia, who also serves as a member of SAICA’s AGA(SA) Committee, highly recommends the AGA(SA) designation. “It has boosted my career immensely. Having the letters AGA(SA) behind my name has linked me to professional excellence, a drive for innovation, and high ethical standards that are recognisable to my employer,” she explains.

As the ideal designation for more technically minded general accountants, a SAICA AGA(SA) designation is a symbol of professional excellence and acquired business skills to enhance organisational value. An AGA(SA) is a professional equipped with business skills and the technical competencies to deliver credible, quality work that adds value to an organisation. “An employer can be assured of the quality and credibility of the SAICA AGA(SA) designation,” says Evodia.

Working in the Department of Human Settlements, Evodia has demonstrated these abilities time and again. “My role encompasses delivering sustainable performance improvement in the finance and budget management of the department by ensuring that fiscal policies are implemented and that finance management standard operating procedures are adhered to.”

Her responsibilities also include creating an enabling and effective control environment.

Evodia advises both external and internal stakeholders of the department on all finance-related matters. Leading and developing finance and budget management teams, she also acts as  support to the CFO of the department.

“Ensuring that there is a high level of credibility and strong working relationships is also part of my duties along with making certain that the department’s budgeting and reporting processes are carried out efficiently.”

Her typical day includes attending several meetings, analysing and signing off information before it is submitted to the CFO, checking and responding to important emails, liaising with her personal assistant around scheduled activities, meeting with the finance team managers to discuss key deliverables and progress in addition to providing guidance and reviewing departmental cash flows and expenditure performance.

“I have daily interactions with the CFO and other department programme managers,” she says.

Evodia is committed to making a difference in the public sector. “My motive is to assist the public sector to achieve better outcomes in the audit processes, optimise finance management operations and contribute to strong working environment ethics, and to develop and lead capable and competent finance specialists.”

Ethical behaviour is high on her priority list. “There must be effective law enforcement in the country, which will be essential to ensure that disciplinary action is taken against corrupt individuals,” she says firmly. “Transparency and fairness play a significant role in curbing corruption.”

Furthermore, leaders must lead by example. “It is about setting the right tone and taking appropriate steps to ensure that internal controls in the sector are adequate and operating effectively to prevent corruption from occurring, says Evodia.” Leadership is important. She defines great leaders as people who have clear vision, people who continuously self-assess, are decisive, courageous, passionate and innovative. They aspire to inspire, and they are humble, which means they are willing to admit when they are wrong and take criticism as an opportunity.

Ask her about herself, however, and she tells you she is an introvert. As a wife and mother of a toddler, her time away from the office is spent mostly with her family.  “I’m only energetic at the workplace,” she says. “After hours I mostly feel drained and need some time to recharge my energy. I prefer spending my time alone or with my family. I can be very shy at times.”

A self-confessed career woman, motherhood has brought her much joy. “Adjusting to the new lifestyle was not easy, and I am still working on it. However, motherhood has brought more meaning to my life; I have more reason to excel.”