About 5 years ago, if you had said that you are a blogger by profession one would have thought that you were high on something illegal. However, blogging has come of age and has become so mainstream that it is the norm for corporates to want to reach out and work with bloggers. This is due to the realisation that it is the most effective way to reach out to the younger generation who are mostly online and as such cannot be reached by the traditional media. It is in view of this that Barclays Bank had a meetup with bloggers last week which was organized by Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE).
The Barclays team was led by the CEO Jeremy Awori and the Marketing and Corporate Relations Director Caroline Ndungu. The team had a long and fruitful conversation around Barclays Bank of Kenya, it values, commitment to the Kenyan market, ready to work, shared growth and their new customer focused website.
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The bank believes that for it to grow and prosper, the communities in which it operates should also prosper. This has seen Barclays invest in various projects that benefit communities in which it operates. Among the projects that the bank has funded include the Sports For Kenyan Youth Employment (SKYE). This is a sports led initiative that reaches out to the youth through sports. In Kenya the program the program aimed at reaching 3,100 youth in the Eastlands area. The youth were taught skills in electrical wiring, masonry and plumbing. These skills have enabled these youth to get employment in companies like Kenya Power, Nairobi Water, China Roads & Bridges Corporation among other. This has enabled youth who previously did not have any hope to start earning salaries of upto Kshs.40,000.
Ready To Work
This is an online curriculum that works to equip college and university graduates with skills that would enable them to better tackle the job market as they hunt for jobs. It helps the young people build the skills needed to make the critical transition from education into the work place. Skills imparted under the program include people skills, work skills, entrepreneurship and money skills. There have been numerous complaints that those leaving school nowadays are usually half baked and the program helps refine them. Check out Ready to work here.
The team from Barclays also talked about the bureaucracy within the bank, they explained that being a multi national the bank has to deal with global standardization as well as localization. Another challenge that the bank faces is the elitist tag with many ordinary wananchi not wanting to bank with them. However, the bank is working hard to drop the tag.