Air time with Rudy ..................................... 02 AYEF ............................................................ 06 08
............. My City - Durban, with Sue Fun in the Snow! Festive Spread
Spring Braai................. 14 Mpisi Heroes
KPMG Relay Race Singing Sensation â€“ Sheila
................. 18 ................. 20
January New Yearâ€™s Traditions
Babies and Children ................. 32
............. Fitter Body, Fitter Brain Culinary Inspiration Competition
What does your general day at work consist of? Generally, it is the coordination of people and allocating duties to them and making sure operations run smoothly. Our team have meetings on a daily basis amongst China Tel members and all of us are allocated with different tasks. Team work is of the utmost importance and we are working well and improving as a team.
Which part of your job do you enjoy most?
What is your position here at Mpisi Group? Currently as project manager at China Tel. Actually, I was introduced to Mr Robert by Jeff. I remember I had an interview for about 40 minutes with him and I thought I was going to Dongfeng department. However I landed up in China Tel and Iâ€™m very happy here with a team of great people.
The job keeps me occupied and thinking all the time. I do enjoy making friends with our clients, the experience is really rewarding and one can meet amazing people while on business trips. working well and improving as a team. At China Tel, you tend to spend a lot more time with colleagues than your own family and it is important that internal relationships are kept positive at all times. I am happy that we are growing.
What do you love about South Africa? People are lekker here, just dig it!
air-time WITH RUDY HUANG China Tel
What do you love about Johannesburg?
What cultural group or tradition do you belong to?
Shopping malls, I guess that’s about all there is to love really.
I am Asian by nature, yet I grew up in an English white school so I am quite a mix of both I guess.
What is your favourite city? Old City in Jerusalem is the most fascinating city I have seen thus far, it is a place full of history and different cultures with many faiths coexisting within the Old City walls.
So, where did you grow up and where did you go thereafter? I grew up in Queenstown in the Eastern Cape. Thereafter, I went on to Cape Town and studied marketing at UCT.
Could you name some things that you consider positive values? I value friendship and trust.
What is your favourite kind of food? Why? I love stinky tofu and I also enjoy a good braai – pap en vleis.
What do you remember most from when you were a child and a teenager? I was sent to a boarding school back in the 80’s and, hell, I cried for a week. No one bothered to calm me down, but finally I settled in quite well. As a teenager what I remember the most was being elected as deputy head boy in my matric year.
How does your life as a child compare to your life as an adult now? As an adult you have more freedom to choose what you want to do. However, you also have to take responsibility for what you do.
When you think back to your hometown what do you miss most of all? If I have to decide on a hometown I would most definitely choose Cape Town and, of course, I miss the chicks at Camp’s Bay beach especially the topless girls.
If there are some unique aspects of your life that you could share with us, what would that be? Take every day as the last day, make the most of it and do not fear mistakes.
How do you think your cultural background influences the way you conduct yourself at work? I think my cultural background has a strong influence because I was raised here. I do get along better with most people from here and we are able to understand each other a lot better.
She said YES! Have you ever achieved an important goal in your personal life that you would like to share with us? I would like to share my experiences with my guys and hope my contribution is useful to help the team grow and become self-sufficient. I am by no means perfect, but this is what I would like to achieve.
How do you face up to any challenges? Prepare yourself, face it and learn from it.
So where is your wife from? My wife is from Taiwan. We met at my first job in Taiwan, but we didnâ€™t click at all. We left the company one after the other and thought we should celebrate the occasion, so we went out for dinner once and the rest followed.
How did you propose to her? I proposed to my wife at a restaurant in Taipei with about 150 guests there that night. We were seated at a table that is one of their best tables in front of the performance stage. I told her that I had left my phone in the car and then I left her in the restaurant for about 40 minutes. She was getting worried about me and kept on phoning me, but without any response. I returned while a live band was playing and with help from the DJ I was on my knees and proposed to her in front of a huge crowd complete with flowers and a ring. It caused quite a stir and everyone around was taking photos and celebrated with us. And off course â€Ś She said YES!
What do you like to do in your personal time away from work? Outside of work I enjoy socialising with friends and having drinks and enjoying myself to the max.
If you could be any animal, which animal would you choose?
Are you romantically involved at the moment?
Well, definitely not a panda as they only have sex once a year.
Yes, I am. My wife works in the Imports Department, but I am constantly flirting with everyone in Mpisi.
I would choose a wolf as wolves are intelligent animals. They think strategically, work as a team and observe before they attack. Also, I think they have a lot more sex.
AYEF â€“ Annual Year-End Function On the 7th of December the whole Mpisi family came together to host our 9th annual year-end function. We learnt the strength of our staff in the service provided by our twelve ladies, the guidance of the organising committee, the performance by our talented employees and the happiness as experienced in the laughter and appreciation from our most valued guests. Here are some photo highlights from that unforgettable evening.
I love shopping at Gateway, Galleria and Pavilion. I go to Virgin Active in the Bluff after work which I’ve just started doing.
DURBAN with Sue How long have you lived in Durban? Since I was born.
What do you love about living in Durban? The beach definitely.
Are there any things you dislike about living in Durban?
There is nothing to dislike about living in Durban, I love the city. Durban has always had good weather, except for nowadays where we have four seasons in one day.
What are some of your favorite things to do in Durban?
Also, going to the beachfront and Michelle Park, spending the day with my family. I love going out to eat at restaurants with friends and family to Pride of India, John Dory’s, Ocean Basket, Nando’s, Jaipur Palace and many other places. I love watching movies, playing indoor games at the malls. I love taking my niece to uShaka, watching the dolphin shows and just
having fun with her in the games. I love going on boat rides as well.
Nobody can make bunnies like Durban.
If you could describe Durban in one sentence what would that be?
What can I say I love my city. The one thing that we have in common is that there is crime in Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg.
Durban is the most amazing, beautiful awesome place to be.
If you compared Durban to other South African cities such as Cape Town or Johannesburg - whatâ€™s the same and whatâ€™s different? Durban is multicultural compared to Cape Town and Johannesburg. Durban has the least amount of traffic compared to Cape Town and Johannesburg. Durban has more potential in the business industry.
Whatâ€™s your favorite building in Durban? The Durban City Hall building.
What building in Durban is an eyesore to you? No specific building, there are many buildings in central town though.
What would you tell someone that has just moved to Durban?
You made the right choice; Durban is the place to be.
What is your position at Mpisi Group? I am a Human Resource Administrator.
What does a regular day at Mpisi look like for you? I am always at work early at 07:30 or sometimes earlier, a cup of tea in the morning is a must. I plan for our morning meeting which starts at 8:30am. The day is filled with hard work, commitment and dedication to my job which I love doing. I am always solving issues with employees and assisting the staff where I can. Team work is essential to me, always helping others where I can, learning and growing at the same time.
Fun in the Snow! We get it, itâ€™s hot outside! But do you remember that on the 7th of August 2012, it snowed in Johannesburg and also in some other parts of South Africa?
Christmas Celebration Deck the halls with boughs of holly…
Christmas means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. It is an important festival to Christians, literally meaning Christ’s Mass, and commemorates the birth of Jesus Christ into this world. However, Christmas is celebrated by both Christians and non-Christians alike and generally reflects a time of giving, peace and family. On the more consumerist side of things Christmas is also a time in which people hit the shops and spend lots of money buying gifts for themselves and others. In the Northern hemisphere, the pagan roots of Christmas originally known as Yule is quite visible as this is the coldest time of the year. Yule has its roots in celebrating the return of the sun to the world after the winter solstice. In the Southern hemisphere, summer is at its height and Christmas time is also the time in which most of us in sunny South Africa go on holiday – especially down to the coastal areas. We, at Mpisi Express, would like to wish you, your friends and family a fantastic Christmas!
Diwali – Festival of Lights
iwali, also spelled Deepavali or Devali, popularly known as the “festival of lights” is primarily a Hindu festival which lasts for five days. For Hindus, Diwali is one of the most important festivals of the year and is celebrated by families performing all kinds of traditional activities together in their homes. The name Diwali translates into “row of lamps”. Diwali involves the lighting of small clay lamps which are filled with oil and signifies the triumph of good over ill. These lights are kept on throughout the night to make the goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, feel welcome. Firecrackers are set alight as it is believed to drive evil spirits away.
Spring Braai On the 14th of September everyone at head office gathered together for our annual Spring Braai. The weather was finally getting warmer and it was great to spend the afternoon outside with the smell of meat on the braai and the sense of togetherness amongst our fellow employees. Here are some photos of that day. We hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed the food that day!
At the time Shane was still the transport manager. He informed us all that the truck had been hijacked early that morning. I quickly got in the car and headed down to Roodekop whilst gathering more information on the matter. I let Jacques know to make use of our own tracking system as the truck had already been recovered – yet the container was still at large, roaming the roads south of Johannesburg. Jacques then switched on our tracking system and started heading towards Roodekop warehouse. On the highway he suddenly gets feedback from the tracking and lo, and behold – the truck with our container had just passed by him.
Jacques and I keep in touch over our mobile phones while he is hot in pursuit of the truck with our container. He follows the container all the way to Alberton North where it parks in front of a garage with a suspicious looking panel beating place at the back. At this moment Shane and I are on our way to Jacques as the guys from Ctrack join him for the standoff to come. On our way to the site where the container is, we come across guys from metro police which we duly inform of the situation and ask to follow us. They couldn’t keep up though, as duty called and we were rushing to the scene. After we arrived on the scene with metro police in tow, the driver tries to get in the truck and leave with our container. I realised what would happen if he got away and I jumped in front of the truck raising my 9mm to warn the driver not to get any ideas. In the end, we recovered the container. We, at Mpisi Express, would like to thank the security guys for their hard and brave work in recovering the container. It is good to know that Mpisi is in safe hands, isn’t it?
HEROES At the end of October a few brave men saved the day at Shed 10 warehouse when a truck burst into flames. We went to Shed 10 warehouse to get the details of true grit and bravery, with the hope of bringing you the backstory. As I entered the front area of the Shed 10 warehouse it is always great to see the guys smiling and eager to talk. I first spoke to Thabo who said that they were busy working in the warehouse when they saw smoke and thereafter people running. As they edged closer towards the area where the smoke seemed to be coming from they saw that a truck was on fire. The driver was calling for help whilst trying to put the fire out with his clothes. They had to act fast and if it weren’t for William Lechaka and Success Ndebele they might not have saved the truck. A group of guys had gathered around very eager to participate in the conversation. I turned only to see William beaming. He thanked us for the fire fighting training they received and then proceeded to tell his story: “We were busy in Bay Two when we saw smoke coming out of the truck. We ran to fetch two fire extinguishers and started to attack the fire with their white spray. It was a fierce battle and we killed the fire in about three minutes. The driver kept on screaming and the people from the warehouse next door ran away.” I suddenly realised that the situation must have been a lot more dangerous than all of us thought or knew. When I quizzed the guys about this, they had the following to say: “The fire posed great danger to the whole area and to our company as a business.
First of all there were diesel tanks right next to the truck which could have exploded and secondly, the truck was still filled with clients’ cargo. At least we managed to stop the fire before it got worse. Not only did we prevent a possible explosion, but we also saved all of our client’s cargo.” Hanslow joined in on the conversation and said that the guys were very happy after they extinguished the fire: “They were eating cake together and rubbing it all over each other’s faces.” Everyone reiterated how grateful they were that both William and Success had been trained in basic fire fighting by the company. These guys showed true leadership skills as they guided everyone with clear instructions on fighting the fire and saving the day. We at Mpisi Group celebrate these guys as heroes of the year 2012.
KPMG Relay A Race to the Very End On the weekend of the 9th to the 11th of November, Mpisiâ€™s management team and quite a few of our employees set of to the KPMG relay in Durban. Challenge and fun was to be had in a spirit of camaraderie and team spirit with the chief goal of letting the Mpisi flag fly high. Here are some photos from this event. Whatever, you do keep on walking... Or running!
e all were in awe when the performance started at our annual year-end function. Sheila Khoza, who works in our Maputo branch, opened the floor with the soulful power ballad I Will Always Love You originally made famous by Whitney Houston. We took some time out to find out more about this brilliant performer and fellow employee.
What is your position here at Mpisi Group? I am an Imports clerk.
What does your general day at work consist of? Lol! Fighting with clearing agents for releases, making sure container delivery happens and just a little bit more.
Which part of your job do you enjoy most? Everything I guess, itâ€™s a learning curve for me and seemingly I learn something new every day.
SHEILA KHOZA Maputo
What would you say made you decide to take this position? The experience of working in another country just worked well with me from the moment I heard of it.
I was born and raised in Johannesburg, so I have a lot of memories attached to living there. The city also groomed and prepared me for anything and everything.
So, where did you grow up? Bezuidenhout valley in Johannesburg.
You recently sang at the annual year-end function. What was the experience like?
What do you remember most from when you were a child and a teenager?
Oh gosh! I was nervous about my voice fading at first, but well it was great, it’s not the first time I sing on stage so I kind of knew the feeling I would have.
There’s actually so much to tell and very little space for me to do so! All I can say is that I was naughty.
How did you prepare for the night? I would sing different kinds of songs to see which one I would love to sing, at work and at home with my son helping me.
If you compared your life as a child to your life as an adult now, in which way(s) would you say they are the same?
What is your favourite city?
I am still that little girl that loves to smile and likes being around diverse people. My mom still treats me like I’m 12. However, everything else has changed.
Johannesburg, because I know it inside out.
And in which way(s) are they different?
Why do you like this city so much?
Well, I’m older now… Hahaha, just joking! I now live in another country, I have a son, I am doing it on my own and life is more peaceful.
When you think back to your hometown what do you miss most of all? Elaborate. I miss sitting in the corner with my friends eating ama kipkip and gossiping about everyone that would pass by.
Mmm… I think I work well with people, I am open to anything and I respect everyone equally. In short – morals, I guess.
What cultural group or tradition do you belong to?
How do you face up to any challenges?
I am Mozambican Portuguese.
I look at each day as it comes, and believe that for every closed door there will always be one more opened up somewhere up ahead, so I don’t let things get to me or bring me down. I actually count them as life experience, a learning curve to be precise.
Could you name some things that you consider positive values?
How do you think your cultural background influences the way you conduct yourself at work?
Waking up every day and knowing I am still alive and have the opportunities available to achieve more in life. Being in control of my own life and making my life feel like a million bucks. To me positivity (optimism) is a positive value in the game of life.
What is your favourite kind of food? Why? Creamy foods with mushrooms – I really don’t know why though. I guess it just tastes divine and different compared to your normal spicy food.
If there are some unique aspects of your life that you could share with us, what would that be? I am good at portraying myself as an extrovert, but honestly I am very shy… I speak about six or seven languages. Well, I still need to learn Chinese though.
Are you romantically involved? Yes, I am. I met someone from Mozambique while we were at church together. We have now been together for four years.
What is your favourite colour? I like both blue and black.
If you could be any animal, which animal would you choose? I would be a cat as they are clean, can jump from house to house – maybe to see what the neighbours are cooking, haha! And, they also have nine lives.
Team Building - United We Stand On the long weekend of the 22nd and 23rd of September we all woke up bright and early to take on each other in the second of our bi-annual team buildings. Weeks of preparation came together in the unveiling of our team names, banners, T-shirts, war cry and specially prepared dishes of fine foods or dazzling drinks. We competed against each other with the memory of the Olympics still fresh in our minds, always striving to give it our best and we did! Hope this takes everyone a few months back.
SANCB â€“ South African National Council for the Blind Imagine a world without sight â€“ one without vision as we understand it. Now think of people making the opposite true, people with a vision to help those without. These people are the dedicated people of the South African National Council for the Blind â€“ SANCB and they facilitate a network of organisations in serving and supporting the prevention of blindness, rehabilitation, community development, training and education of South Africans with visual impairments.
The South African National Council for the Blind was established in 1929 with the chief objective of coordinating all of the South African organisations which work to improve those involved in helping the visually impaired. Since then they have gone from strength to strength and are involved in all nine provinces and some 100 member organisations. The SANCB comprises four core business areas namely social development, the Bureau for the Prevention of Blindness, education and also fundraising. On their website one is alerted to the fact how even a small donation can assist a visually impaired person towards subsidising a white cane, a cataract operation or even the training so needed by a blind person. We at Mpisi thank the people at the SANCB for the daily difference they make in the lives of the visually impaired. We have opened our hearts and contribute towards their worthy cause.
United States A famous tradition in the United States is to kiss someone at midnight; this is done to ensure a year filled with love and affection. Another well-known tradition is the dropping of the New Year’s ball in Times Square, New York City, at 11h59 pm. Thousands of people gather to watch the ball make its one minute descent, arriving exactly at midnight. The tradition first began in 1907.
Brazil In Brazil, on New Year’s Eve, priestesses of the local macumba voodoo belief system dress in blue skirts and white blouses for a ceremony dedicated to the goddess of water, Yemanja. A sacrificial boat laden with flowers, candles and jewellery is pushed out into the open ocean from Brazil’s famous Ipenama beach in Rio de Janeiro.
Oshogatsu – Japan
The New Year, celebrated on January 1, is the most important holiday in Japan, and is a symbol of renewal. Various parties called Bonenkai or ‘forget-the-year parties’ are held in the month leading up to the celebration. All grudges and misunderstandings are forgiven so as to start the year free from weakness. At midnight on December 31st, Buddhist temples strike their gongs 108 times to dispel 108 types of human weaknesses. New Year’s Day is a day of joy and rest.
The Spanish eat twelve grapes at midnight on New Year’s Eve. This tradition is meant to ensure twelve happy months in the coming year.
South Africa In the Cape Province in South Africa, New Year’s Day and Second New Year’s Day is filled with a carnival atmosphere with people dressed in colourful costumes dancing in the streets to the sound of drums. The music is often provided by the Cape minstrels or Kaapse Klopse.
Health & Fitness It is important to look after yourself by eating right and exercising. A lot of people forget the fact that we need some, if not lots, of exercise and a balanced diet to keep our bodies healthy and fit. With January and all of the New Year’s resolutions coming up, we know all too well the feeling that comes up when we promise ourselves a year of exercise, join the nearest gym at expensive rates and then never really live up to what we promised ourselves to do. Or when we vow that we are going to lose all of the weight piled on during festive cheer and 02 find ourselves biting into another Big Mac, again.
However, exercising and eating right doesn’t need to be something we steer clear of at all costs, mean a drive to the gym, break the bank or have us counting calories like there’s no tomorrow. It can be fun and easy, a challenge you can meet from the comfort of your own home or the nearest park or open space. Generally, health and fitness is a combination of three factors – eating right, exercise and, most importantly, attitude. We spoke to three fit and healthy warehouse employees regarding their expert opinions on each of these.
Albert is a supervisor at the City Deep warehouse. He enjoys soccer and other athletics. He feels that exercise and training is the best way to stay healthy and to keep oneâ€™s body fit and strong. Albert suggests jogging, push-ups and various exercise drills to stay fit. Once a person is done with work is generally the best time to exercise and ensure doing so on a daily basis.
Albert from City Deep on Exercise
Bruce from Roodekop on Attitude
Success from Shed 10 on Eating Right
Bruce is a forklift driver and a supervisor at the Roodekop warehouse.
Success is a stock controller and supervisor at Shed 10.
He describes himself as a nice guy that likes to joke. He is also outgoing and outspoken.
He describes himself as a hard worker, team player and he believes in his contribution to the company.
According to Bruce exercise and other activities like building puzzles can help a person keep a healthy mind.
He enjoys jogging every day and going out to socialise. He also loves watching soccer.
Having people around respect you and like you for who you are shows and contributes to a person having a good attitude in life.
According to Success, living an active life and exercising can help a person to stay healthy. People should also eat lots of fruit and vegetables and try to avoid oily foods as well as very sweet and sugary foods.
Karen from China Tel’s Favourite Dish Karen describes her favourite food with a telling smile and enthusiastically says: “It has got to be lamb breyani!” For Karen, lamb breyani has a very distinctive flavour. It is definitely not like any ordinary dish and has a unique combination of rich flavours. This famous Indian dish is made on special occasions like weddings and Deepavali, popularly known as the “festival of lights”. It is also made for special people visiting and gives a person an opportunity to show off any culinary talents. According to Karen no amount of words could explain the taste of lamb breyani. It has simply got to be tasted. Using a word like “delicious” won’t do it justice at all. The crowning ingredients are the spices used such as black, white and green cardamom, star anise, cinnamon bark, natural plain yoghurt and most importantly saffron. Only fresh ingredients are used. Karen especially enjoys making this dish when she has all of the ingredients and if it is a weekend – as it is a hell of a process. One has to have a passion for cooking as it can be a painstaking and time consuming process. Karen added, with a smile, that anyone interested in tasting her lamb breyani can come and talk to her about it...
! N O I T I T COMPE Where’s McPC? We’d like to take this moment to introduce you to our Mpisi Express mascot, McPC. McPC is hidden throughout the magazine – if you can find McPC give us the page number, where and how many and you’ll enter our random draw to win a fantastic, electronic photo frame! Either email your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org or sms your answers to 078 160 3874. Don’t forget to include your name! The closing date for entries is Friday, the 14th of December 2012 at 15h00.
Crazy Photo Competition Winner Word is out that Tonderai Mukuze is the winner of our crazy photo competition. Munching on snow has never looked this much fun! Tonderai was picked in a random draw from all of the entries for the crazy photo competition and wins a beautiful set of champagne flutes to ring in the New Year with!
Mpisi Group's employee magazine bumper edition.