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April 2024


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The meat supply chain and the meat value chain are interconnected but represent different aspects of the meat industry. Here‘s a definition and understanding of both, along with the key differences:


Meat Supply Chain:

Definition: The meat supply chain refers to the end-to-end process of producing, processing and delivering meat products to consumers. It encompasses the various stages and activities involved in bringing meat from the farm to the table.

Understanding: The meat supply chain starts with primary production, where livestock are raised and managed. This includes breeding, feeding, and ensuring the health of the animals. The next stages involve slaughtering, meat processing, quality control, packaging, distribution, and retailing. All of these activities focus on getting meat to consumers while ensuring safety and quality.


Meat Value Chain:

Definition: The meat value chain goes beyond the supply chain and includes the additional activities that add value to the raw meat materials, ultimately enhancing their worth in the market. It encompasses not only the production and distribution but also processing, branding, marketing, and other value-adding activities that include document management systems.

Understanding: The meat value chain begins with the supply chain‘s primary production and continues through processing and distribution. However, it places a significant emphasis on the transformation of meat products into more valuable or differentiated items. For instance, it involves the processing of meat into sausages, bacon, deli meats, or other processed products, where additional value is created. Branding and marketing strategies are also essential components of the value chain.



Topic 1: Self-Mastery 

"Courage, hard work, self-mastery, and intelligent effort are all essential to successful life." – Theodore Roosevelt, former US president. 

When we have developed self-mastery, we have the ability to control ourselves in all situations, and we move forward consciously and steadily towards our goals. We know our purpose, and we have the self-discipline needed to do things in a deliberate, focused, and honorable way.

It is the pursuit of achieving mastery over oneself with skills that lead to self-control, self-discipline, and self-confidence, and in our reach for excellence, it is not merely a result, but an all-encompassing journey.

Before we learn how to attain self-mastery, it’s important to stress again that mastery is all about the process. It is opportunities to collect more wisdom and experience, as there is no limit to self-control, confidence, and discipline. The more we focus on personal growth, the more benefits we will reap and that is why we should engage in this process repeatedly. 


This journey includes the following guides to help us achieve Self-Mastery: 

• Self discovery

 It is the awareness of oneself. Knowing our strengths and weakness and understanding how we react or respond to our environment. Mastering this increases our emotional intelligence.


• Self-management

Requires emotional intelligence. We need to know ourselves in order to manage ourselves and how to deal with our feelings, emotions, desires and conflict. Mastering this can help us respond positively even when facing negative circumstances.


• Self-motivation

The word motivation is derived from the Latin term ‘movere‘, which means ‘to move‘. So Self-motivation literally means to move oneself or the action of movement. It is our ability to do what we need to do, regardless of how we feel at the moment. Mastering this will help us be more time efficient and productive in achieving our goals.


• Time management

Managing our time well will most likely increase our productivity. It is therefore essential to distinguish between what is a priority and time sensitive and what is not. Giving our time and effort to the right things at the right time will ensure success. Mastering of this will not only help us be productive, it will also help us to not expend our personal energy needlessly.


• Personal energy management

Productivity and time management helps us to get more done, but only if we also account for energy management. Because if we don’t, we soon find ourselves exhausted or burned out. It is equally important to be committed to our goals as well as ourselves. So, take the time to rest and re-energize. Simply put, take care of yourself.


• Consistently following the above 5 steps 

We should consistently evaluate our personal growth and development as different phases of our lives come with different challenges. If we can master the discipline of engaging the above guides routinely then we are giving ourselves the opportunity to act from a place of empowerment.



Topic 2: Personal Productivity & Reactions to change.

 “It’s not always that we need to do more but rather that we need to focus on less.” – Nathan W. Morris, author

Productivity can mean different things in different contexts, especially with the rise of knowledge, work and automation. Personal productivity refers to how consistently and efficiently an individual completes tasks or accomplishes the goals that are set either by themselves or the work environment. It includes how we organize our responsibilities, goals, and routines to efficiently and consistently complete the tasks that matter most. It should be built on a system that helps us prioritize what‘s critical to our success but with balance.

When we want to get more done, many of us simply work longer hours, move deadlines around, and multitask. Although these aspects provide some short-term relief, they aren‘t sustainable in the long term. No matter how well we are performing right now, we can almost always improve. When we‘re more productive, we contribute strongly to the overall success and profitability of our organization. And it feels good to be in control of our time and know that we can produce the results that are expected of us.

To be more productive, get organized and have the right attitude. Everything can be managed and improved from the information we receive to our working systems. Taking this approach will help us to increase our personal productivity and effectiveness. There are factors that can directly or indirectly influence our productivity. How we react or respond to them will determine whether they impact us positively or negatively. We can either react to situations as they happen, or we can have a more proactive approach and plan for various scenarios.

When we react, change is forced upon us. When we are proactive, we are more likely to participate in the change. Our approach will then determine whether we instruct people toward change or influence or motivate them towards change. Influencing or motivating people has been seen as a more preferred leadership style. However, there is no one right way, because  circumstances change all the time. 

There are three drivers of business activity and usually you can only choose one of them as your theme of the moment and in some environments it is customer driven: 

Cost  -  Quality  -   Time

 The choice of primary driver will influence how well you and your team react to the environment



 Topic 3: The Effects of Self Mastery in Industry

 “No matter how you define success, you will need to be resilient, empowered, authentic, and limber to get there.” – Joanie Connell

Business mastery is the art of mastering the skills and strategies necessary for running a successful business. It involves understanding the various aspects of a business and leadership and knowing how to leverage them to achieve success. What this means in terms of Self Mastery is that once we have grown in developing our personal traits, we should then be able to leverage that in achieving success in business. 

Our focus will be on the following traits:

- Resilience

 This is the ability to bounce back from challenges. Be it personal or inherent in our industry. The quicker we have the ability to respond, the sooner we can combat against disruptions or significant, unplanned changes that could threaten our business, people, or reputation.


- Adaptability

 This quality refers to our readiness to adjust strategies in response to market changes. We should be equipped to respond quickly to changing ideas, responsibilities, expectations, trends, strategies, and other processes so that our operations or productivity is not constrained or disadvantaged in any way.


- Visionary Thinking

It can be described as forward-looking perspective to drive long-term success. It encompasses clear goals, a strategic plan for achieving those goals and equipping and empowering team members to be able to implement the plan.


- Risk Management

 Risk management is simply prudent decision-making and effective risk mitigation. It is the practice of identifying, assessing, and controlling threats to our business environment.


- Effective Communication

 Communication should be clear by all stakeholders. It should be received and understood with clarity and purpose.


- Customer-Centric Approach

 This is simply understanding and meeting consumer needs and should be core to our businesses value system. It requires us investing in building long term, positive relationships.


 - Innovative Mindset

 Embraces creativity for product and process improvements. It allows us to have forward thinking, and be creative and open to testing, making mistakes and trying again.


- Collaborative Spirit

It creates an environment where there is a willingness to help and support each team member, so the team performs and delivers as one unit. It Involves building partnerships within the local community and industry.


- Time Management

 The purpose of time management is to efficiently utilize time resources for optimal productivity. Simply put, it means to enable people to get more, and better work done in less time.


- Ethical Leadership

It is upholding ethical standards in business practices. We should be intentional about placing people into management and leadership positions who will promote and be an example of appropriate, ethical conduct in their actions and relationships in the workplace and in industry.



Topic 4: Pillars of Mastery in Industry

 “The hardest thing is to stick to things when you have outlived the first interest, and not yet gained the second, which comes with a sort of mastery” – Janet Erskine Stuart

Developing and mastering skills in industry is important because it allows you to improve attributes and qualities vital to effective performance in industry as well as the workplace. These skills go beyond academic content and instead require years of active business in the industry. There are several ways to increase industry knowledge. Highlighted below are some of the major pillars industry stakeholders can use to gain industry knowledge. By developing these skills, you can also begin your path to personal development, which can help you maximize your potential and achieve your career goals in record time.


Industry Knowledge: 

Industry knowledge is information on how a particular company or business functions. It includes core processes needed for major companies and their key products and services. It also refers to a deep understanding of manufacturing and supply chain dynamics.


Local Production Skills:  

Training in efficient and quality local production practices and standard operating procedures.


Supply Chain Management: 

Developing skills in understanding and managing supply chains effectively.


Entrepreneurial Leadership: 

Fostering leadership qualities tailored to SMMEs.


Market Research and Trends: 

Keeping abreast of market trends for informed decision-making.


Financial Literacy: 

Knowing and understanding financials and enhancing financial management skills for sustainable business operations.


Regulatory Compliance: 

Ensuring understanding and adherence to industry regulations and business compliance.


Technology Integration: 

Incorporating technology and innovation for improved productivity and competitiveness.


Sustainability Practices: 

Promoting environmentally conscious and sustainable business practices.


Community Engagement: 

Develop and implement strategies for positive community impact aligned with project goals.


Ways to Maintain Your Industry Knowledge and Skills: 

•         Use your professional/social networks.

•         Subscribe to industry/trade magazines, blogs, and newsletters.

•         Ask your employer for support.

•         Undertake refresher courses.

•         Watch webinars and podcasts.

•         Enlist a mentor.



Topic 5: Three-tiered process of Self Mastery and personal development in Industry


1. Foundation Level: "Essential Proficiency"

Proficiency is typically demonstrated as the level of skill or abilities in performing a set of related knowledge, skills, and behaviours required by an individual to successfully navigate through life and work and are deemed essential. The core purpose of this level is to build these fundamental skills and knowledge required at a foundational level for success in life and work and laying the groundwork for personal and business growth.

 Levels of proficiency:

  1. Not Applicable.
  2. Fundamental Awareness (basic knowledge)
  3. Novice (limited experience)
  4. Intermediate (practical application)
  5. Advanced (applied theory)
  6. Expert (recognized authority)

 It is necessary for us as individuals to ascertain what skills and knowledge are relevant to our lives and industry and at which level, we would need to function in it.


2. Intermediate Level: "Strategic Excellence"

Strategic excellence is about developing and strengthening the management systems and processes of an organization to improve performance and create value for stakeholders. Its core purpose is advancing expertise in strategic decision-making, leadership, and industry-specific practices to foster sustainable growth and competitiveness. The following pillars create the structure of what strategic excellence should encompass:

  1. Purpose
  2. People
  3. Processes
  4. Passion
  5. Performance


3. Advanced Level: "Holistic Mastery"

In this level, we are to achieve excellence and balance in all areas of self and business. Its core purpose is achieving a comprehensive mastery of personal traits, industry intricacies, and ethical leadership, ensuring long-term success, and community impact. There are three types of skills that allow us to achieve this state of holistic mastery being: 

 • Functional skills

These skills are abilities or talents that are inherited at birth and developed through experience and learning as well as the industry and market in which you operate. Examples of Functional Skills include communication skills, such as writing, reading, and speaking; mathematical skills, such as numeracy and problem-solving; information technology skills, such as the use of computers and software applications; practical skills like the ability to follow instructions.

 • Self-management Skills 

Self-management skills are the abilities that help you manage yourself both professionally and personally. The following are examples:

  1. Time management
  2. Self-motivation
  3. Stress management
  4. Adaptability
  5. Decision making
  6. Goal alignment
  7. Personal development

 • Special knowledge

Special knowledge skills refer to the extra set of skills that make you unique and valuable to your company or organisation. For instance, if you speak multiple languages fluently, have in-depth knowledge about a particular industry or have a rare skill set, these would be classed as special knowledge skills. These skills are often harder to learn and develop, but they can give you a significant competitive advantage in your career and in life. 

When you have developed self-mastery at this level, you have the ability to control yourself in all situations, and you move forward consciously and steadily towards your goals. You know your purpose, and you have the self-discipline needed to do things in a deliberate, focused, and honorable way.



Topic 6: Self-Mastery in Leadership

"Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason, mastery demands all of a person" - Albert Einstein

Mastery does not require us to be perfect, but it does require us to pursue perfection. This distinction is important because it allows us to enjoy the results we produce while adopting a mindset that requires us to pour our heart and soul into our work. It is vital to have structural pillars that will form the guiding system for mastery in our personal life as well as work.

We are not what we know but what we are willing to learn, and the willingness to learn is what catapults us from being as we are to growing into leadership. Good people are good because they‘ve come to wisdom through failure and many other life challenges. When we pursue mastery in our structural pillars, over time we become people who not only practice good behaviour, but unconsciously model it for others. Hence good leadership is produced in the pursuit of mastery of good attributes.

The following attributes are seen as pivotal in building a strong foundation in how we pursue mastery of self in all environments.

1. Honesty

Providing truthful and transparent information in your personal life and in business dealings.


2. Reliability

Consistently delivering on commitments and promises.


3. Trustworthiness

Being dependable and worthy of trust in all interactions.


4. Ethical Decision-Making

Making choices aligned with moral and ethical principles.


5. Accountability

Taking responsibility for one‘s actions and their impact.


6. Fairness

Treating others equitably and impartially.


7. Respect for Others

Valuing diverse perspectives and treating others with respect.


8. Loyalty

Demonstrating loyalty to family, partners, customers, and the community.


9. Humility

Acknowledging our strengths and weaknesses and being open to learning and improvement.


10. Consistency

Applying ethical principles consistently across various situations.


In the words of Winston Churchill, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts”. So let us have the courage to persevere in the pursuit of self-mastery despite what challenges may present themselves.



Topic 7: Transformational leadership

"I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers."— Ralph Nader.

If our actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, then we are by definition a leader. As we step into this New Year, we should embrace the potential for all the new opportunities and possibilities that may present itself. Often this journey finds a measure of leadership along the way. Most times it is a natural by-product of gaining strength, courage, and confidence through every experience in which we face our fears and overcome.          

If life as we know it is constantly changing and evolving, then we have to be willing to constantly evolve and adapt. To get to what is perfect or ideal, transformation is necessary and when we stop thinking primarily about ourselves and our own self-preservation, we experience an enlightening transformation of our awareness, thoughts and behaviour.

The key to successful leadership is influence. Whilst there are many factors that contribute to ones influence, integrity, transparency and consistency are the pillars that builds others trust in you. Equally, humility leads to strength. It is the highest form of self-respect to admit one’s mistakes and to make amends for them. This also builds trust and influence. Once we can master this from within, it organically filters from the inside out. So too does our growth filter from our personal environment into our business environment.

Whilst great leadership is often the fruit of one’s excellence, transformational leadership produces excellence in many.

“Now, more than ever, the world needs transformational leaders — not to cultivate change for it’s own sake, but to lead through the inevitable evolutions in business and human society.”― Hendrith Vanlon Smith Jr

It is no longer enough to just inspire people to greatness, but so necessary to inspire people toward transformation. The world is changing and has influenced how we do life and work. As leaders, it is our responsibility to equip and empower others that lead and those that follow to adapt and successfully function within these changes.

As leaders it is also important to discourage fear and apathy. It has been said that the price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change. Our success in life isn‘t based on our ability to simply change. It is based on our ability to change faster than our competition, customers and business.

Transformational leadership done with conviction produces the following advantages:

•Increased motivation.

•Motivated followers by creating a compelling vision and fostering a sense of purpose.

•Enhanced performance.

•Improved culture.

•Adaptation to change.

•Enhance talent development.

To truly transform requires our inspiration to be followed by our action. After all, well done is better than well said !!



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