20.3.09

Britain's first black CEO

We’re taking over, one company at a time…..

This man left Ivory Coast as a refuge 10 years ago, and he is now a CEO at 46 !!

(Although he was a government minister at the time, which is impressive, government minister at 36!)

The sad part of the interview:

“……..in a previous interview with the Guardian Thiam revealed he had refused to attend any more job interviews unless headhunters told potential employers that he was black before they met him: "I was tired of the usual answer, which was, 'We like you, you are a great guy but this is a division with 10,000 employees and we just don't think they would understand having someone like you at the helm.'"

It's sad that there are still people who think like this. I had a 'similar' incident a couple of weeks ago, someone called me and left a voicemail saying he was exicited by my CV, and that he thought I was a very good match for a job role he had going. I looked at the role, and it was spot on, very good role for me. I called him back, and left a voicemail. This was 5 minutes after he called me. He calls 5 minutes later to say, or sorry, technically, you just haven't got it. I was bemused. What could have changed in 5 minutes? Then it hit me. My voicemail. He heard my accent.

3 comments:

  1. it makes me so sad when people act like this. just because someone is from a different culture or heritage, it doesn't automatically mean that they are so vastly different from you that they can't be tolerable. you would think that by this time and in this year, people could just put their prejudices behind them.

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  2. Very familiar. I think britain has a lot to learn in this aspect. However mark these words, in the next few decades, britain would be begging to have the same people they are rejecting right now, who are the majority tax payers and non-benefit claimers by the way????

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  3. I too have experienced it and the guy was not subtle about it... He said to me that he thought my name was Anglo Saxon so was suprised to see that I wasn't. during the course of the interview he then went on to call African people "savages."

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