Armed with 14 years’ experience in the corporate real estate, property and facilities management sector, Bogopa may be a trailblazing young female talent in corporate South Africa, but her accomplishments required a lot of sacrifice and hard work.
While she maintains that the traditionalism and inflexibility of corporate SA is stifling, and some of the systems need to be reviewed, she implores young talent to do their part.
“Young people need to be patient and remember that education isn’t their only bargaining chip in the working world; they can gain wisdom from practical experience and the time spent getting it. They must not feel like things are above them and should be mindful that progress is a two-way street,” she advises.
Bogopa adds that talented young people will perform better if corporates make a greater effort to understand their needs.
“The thing with the youth is that they are very self-driven, but are also looking to be incubated and developed. I think they are less fussy about moving up than they are about learning more. Corporates should always prepare for another plan when the talent exceeds their expectations because [young people] tend to become idle when not challenged,” she says.
As the participation of black students in Property Studies continues to grow at university level, and initiatives such as the Women’s Property Network spearhead female involvement, Bogopa is encouraged by the steady transformation in the industry.
However, she strongly believes that in order for the visibility of black people in the property landscape to grow, black people have to be more prominent in the ownership of property.
Her role as Vice President for the South African Institute of Black Property Practitioners contributes to building a more representative property industry.
“We recognise the people who have made a difference and we are an advocacy group that wants to ensure there is enough recognition. Our funder gives bursaries to property students and we offer work opportunities,” she explains.
By hosting networking sessions and an annual convention celebrating the strides black people are making in the industry, the organisation actively feeds her passion.
In the future, Bogopa hopes to make a larger-scale impact in Africa’s development and to explore entrepreneurship.