INTEKOM - Internet Service Provider


1997: In her first corporate job as a web graphic designer for ISP Intekom, Cheral made a success of herself within a short period of time. Within the first 3 months, she quickly came to grips with the new concept of The Internet, became a successful web graphic designer, and extended her scope of work to working with databases and in programming languages such as JavaScript, HTML, ASP, CGI and Perl.

She also clearly understood the process of gathering the client's needs through analysis and probing, and was easily able to convert the clients ideas, wants and needs into tangible concepts, visualise creative and unique designs and then graphically represent it for the client to approve.

She also realised that technological advancements were going to become the norm in the way businesses operate, and to maintain competitive advantage businesses would find themselves including technology into their business strategies.

Not only did she start thinking about how their client's businesses could benefit by the introduction and use of technology, but also how Intekom could benefit from these advancements too.

1998: Her manager, Shaun Donovan, acknowledged her skills and abilities by promoting her to Manager: Web Development Department for Intekom. During this time, Cheral creatively implemented new processes, systems and creative ideas to enhance the way in which the web graphic design department was operating.

Out of 32000 employees Telkom (Intekom's main stakeholder) identified and rewarded 500 people with a fully paid High Achiever Course every year. In 1998, Cheral was identified by Intekom and Telkom as a high flyer and was immediately enrolled on the 2 year program. Additionally, during this time Cheral obtained a Certificate in Project Management and in Systems Thinking.

VWV INTERACTIVE - Multimedia and Internet Design and Development Studio

VWV Interactive

2000: As Cheral's knowledge of managing a department expanded, she felt she required a little more experience in managing a project. She realised that if a project was not managed correctly, profitability could never be obtained. After doing research in the industry about the leading multimedia and internet development companies, Cheral ventured forth to become Senior Project Manager of VWV Interactive.

Her project management knowledge and management experience put her in great stead to successfully manage all her projects from start to finish, i.e. analysis, design, planning, implementation, testing and maintenance, as well as effectively managing the onsite team and clients' expectations with regular communication and feedback.

Within 6 months, Cheral was successfully project managing the largest of VWV Interactive's clients, and was awarded Top Project Manager and Best Individual Awards. She was also rewarded with an external personal trainer who coached and mentored her in a customised training program for over a year.

2001: Cheral's knowledge and ability to merge herself into the client's business led to her advising VWV's clients on Digital Strategies, Communications Strategies and finally Business Strategies.

At this point, she decided she wanted a little more theory in how businesses should be run, and enrolled herself with Wits Business School to complete their Management Advancement Programme within the year. She not only received top student for Human Resources and for Finance, but also received the Top Student of the Year Award.

CARITOR - Software Engineering Firm

Caritor 2002: Through networking in the industry, it became known that international software engineering company, Caritor with head offices in California, 2 software development centres in India and offices in England, Singapore and Australia were looking to open up a South African branch.

Cheral's industry knowledge, her expertise in her field, her management experience, her enthusiasm and her achievements were all perfect for the job and was headhunted to become General Manager: South Africa for Caritor.

Cheral strategised, organised and managed the operations of the South African branch for 2 years. She came to understand the inner workings of all aspects of the business with the support of the South African Managing Director, International CEO (in USA), CFO (in UK) and COO (in India). She and the SA Managing Director took the South African Branch from zero to hero within the estimated 2 years of breakeven.

LIVING MATTER - Landscape Styling and Design Studio

Living Matter

2004: Cheral started her own business, Living Matter, officially in May 2004. She used her skills and knowledge attained during her corporate career to successfully create, manage and grow Living Matter to where it is now.

She is still learning as she goes along, but with her thirst for knowledge and her need to succeed, she is successfully transforming landscapes all over the Western Cape, South Africa.