Sitting here, drinking English tea in cold, wet and grey London, watching the city frantically preparing for the festive period, my mind is very much on what lies ahead for Africa Legal and on the year that has been.
This always seems to be a time of year to reflect and, looking back now, I am humbled by and proud of what our Africa Legal community has achieved.
We all lead such busy lives but it is so important to consider the impact of our work and what it means to others.
In periods of stress, when work pressures are front of mind, we can forget those who benefit from our effort. If you are a lawyer you could have helped a client complete a big transaction or opened the way for a graduate to step into the world of an increasingly changing legal profession. Maybe, you offered a hand to one person starting out in a career they never thought they could have. Whatever you do, this is a time for all of us to reflect on the positive actions we have taken.
My thoughts and thanks go to our fantastic team. We are spread across Lagos, London, Johannesburg, Durban, Cape Town and Nairobi and every day we work to build a united community of lawyers who can access breaking news, interviews, new jobs, courses, conferences and each other using our technology.
My mind is constantly on our 100,000 visitors and the 14 million people who have come to know and interact with our brand through social media. Every day you send us messages of support and thanks for bringing Africa Legal to life. These messages tell us how our platform is changing your views of others on the continent and creating a truly pan-African community through knowledge, transparency and collaboration. Thank you all for your support, from the bottom of my heart
Very special thanks goes to my soulmate, best friend, co-founder and love of my life, Wendy. Without Wendy this journey would never have been possible. Together we have navigated many hardships and been there for each other through sleepless nights. Together we’ve seen the worst side of some people but, without a doubt, also the very best of others.
The year to come holds so much.
We will be building on our ground-breaking new way to access practical legal training through our partnership with the University of Cape Town. Courses relevant to today's modern African lawyer are in development and will be straightforward and easy to access.
We have entered into the event space with a partnership with the Hyve Group at the African Mining Indaba in February. Here we’ve created a focussed General Counsel event – A Legal Indaba – specifically for lawyers working in mining in Africa.
So, what does 2020 look like for our community? More courses, more interviews and local news content, more events, research reports and thought leadership pieces and, most importantly, more commitment from our leadership team to give you all the very best experience and user journey. We want Africa Legal to be a place where, every day, you can learn something new. This could be through reading that little piece of news that you take away and discuss or maybe it is through an interview with one of our team in which you share your experiences and knowledge.
2020 is going to be a year of growth of us all. Now, as I finish my tea and look out of the window, my pondering has made the grey skies of London feel blue. And yes, even the sun is shining! I wish you all, and your families and friends, a very Merry Christmas and healthy New Year.
CEO and Co-Founder