Patrick A. Davis, Chief Operating Officer, Snap for Charity, Ghana
I am a Ghanaian living and working in Ghana although sometimes my work demands make me travel to other West African countries. I consult for a number of NGO's in 3 West African Countries. When I am not working I love to read, paint and listen to classical music.
Snap for Charity (SFC) Foundation is a global development network headquartered in Accra, Ghana. SFC partners celebrities who desire change for the less privileged and helps people build a better life. It provides grant and resource support to orphanages and other charities, with increasing emphasis on assistance to the less fortunate and financially challenged in various communities. To accomplish our goals SFC focuses on poverty reduction; energy, environmental and social developmental projects; HIV/AIDS, malaria and cervical cancer awareness and crisis prevention and recovery. The status of SFC is that of a fund raising body.
As a founding member and Chief Operating Officer, my job involves all levels of management across all departments in the organisation. From working in partnership with the C.E.O. to create strategic long term plans, implementing new processes, coordinating annual operations plans and budgets, running the day to day activities of the foundation by bridging national and regional operations, identifying geographic growth opportunities and priorities, communicating brand messages internally and externally, ensuring that all programmatic partners renew contracts, produce and implement a balanced scorecard metric throughout the organisation, develop an accounting system that provides the organisation with quick access to financial information and responsibility for human capital development.
I am particularly fond of the recruitment and selection aspect of my job. I am able to interact with people with very innovative ideas and there is always an element of surprise involved. One can never accurately predict the responses people will give when asked questions at interviews. Of course there is also the obvious satisfaction that the successful candidates will have their dreams fulfilled and will be contributing to the achievement of our organisational goals.
My career started in the last semester of my ABE studies in 2008, I was given an opportunity to become a teaching assistant in the Leading School of Management in Ghana. Over the years have worked as an ABE lecturer and co-ordinator at various ABE centers and I still work as an ABE coordinator for Logos Business School in Ghana.
Throughout all these jobs, I had the opportunity to interact students from all walks of life across the African Continent. I realised I needed to do something that will impact on the lives of people aside lecturing and coordinating in colleges. I therefore started the Snap for Charity Foundation together with my two partners who are also ABE alumni.
ABE courses are structured to ensure that the student (irrespective of the programme he/she is studying) learns about an organisation as a whole and has a bit of knowledge about all the departments and their functions. Courses such as Introduction to Business Communication and Introduction to Business are studied by all Level 4 students while The Business Environment and Organisational Behaviour are studied by all Level 5 students. Upon completion of the Level 5 Diploma, the student already possesses enough knowledge to be effective and efficient at work. Thus, when Mr. Benjamin Ntim Gyakari and Mr. Emmanuel Boakye-Prempeh gave me the opportunity to lecture ABE students and help mould young minds into successful business executives, I jumped at the opportunity and it has been a blessing. As the years passed I wondered how I can help students who have completed their studies and as I was starting the foundation, I decided to partner two other ABE alumni (Diyana Bawiena and Josephine F. Joh) and give a number of ABE graduates the opportunity to work and practice what they have learnt in a very competitive business environment.
ABE programmes don't just prepare you academically but also prepare you for the ever changing and dynamic work environment. The fees are relatively affordable and there is flexibility as well, as you can write the exams at your own pace. When I started ABE I had fear of calculation subjects so I decided I was going to write all the reading subjects and do the calculation subjects later. I was so surprised when I had an A in Accounting at my first attempt! I discovered that the ABE course outline is such that students don't have to be extremely brilliant in a subject to pass. An understanding of the course is all that is required. Today, I can confidently discuss issues on finance, marketing, human resource, and organisational strategy with people from all walks of life and I believe this is largely thanks to the great foundation ABE gave me.
Students who wish to pursue higher learning will discover that the topics they studied while pursuing ABE qualifications are the same they will learn when studying for their Masters degrees or higher. I have no doubt that ABE graduates are better prepared for the job market which is why my foundation gives ABE qualification holders priority in employment and this has led to all but one of our staff members/consultants being ABE Alumni. I strongly believe that studying for ABE qualifications is both time and money well spent.