A Passion for Authentic Leadership

Dhiren Maharaj has proven to be an adaptable and flexible finance executive, with extensive experience and a creative application of knowledge, while empowering and inspiring his team at LexisNexis.

CIARAN RYAN: Today’s podcast is sponsored by Draftworx, which provides automated drafting and working paper financial software to more than 8000 accounting and auditing firms and corporations. CFO Talks is a brand of the South African Institute of Business Accountants. It’s my great pleasure today to welcome Dhiren Maharaj, who is group financial manager for LexisNexis South Africa, which provides legal, regulatory and business information and analytics. If you’re in the legal profession, you will be well aware of LexisNexis and the products it provides. Dhiren is also a part-time facilitator at MANCOSA and up until 2019 he was divisional tax manager at Transnet Port Terminals. Before that, he was senior finance manager for tax at Transnet Freight Rail in Johannesburg. He’s a CA with an MBA and his current role as group financial manager at LexisNexis is quite different from his previous professional life in rail, ports and logistics, and that proves that you’ve got to be adaptable and flexible as a finance executive. We are also joined on the line by Nicolaas van Wyk, who is the CEO of the South African Institute of Business Accountants. Welcome to Dhiren and to Nicolaas.

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: Hello, Ciaran, nice being with you.

CIARAN RYAN: Dhiren, let’s kick off with you, if you don’t mind, for those who don’t know, explain what is LexisNexis and its various products and how it generates its income.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Thank you Ciaran and Nicolaas, and welcome to the listeners. LexisNexis South Africa is a leading legal content and technology organisation, driven by our vision of enhancing the potential of the African continent by advancing the rule of law. For over 85 years, we have worked in the legal, corporate and government solution segment, guiding our clients to making better decisions, grounded in latest legislation and regulatory developments while being empowered to protect against risk in the most robust way. We are the most trusted and credible legal and regulatory content, anchored by intelligent digital platforms. We help to shoulder the critical responsibilities organisations may have to remain compliant and advance, uphold, or comply with the rule of law. Our solutions are structured in three areas, servicing across all three customer segments, which are research solutions, work solutions, and risk and compliance solutions. Our research solutions drive best of class research, decision outcomes, productivity, and process efficiency, powered by artificial intelligence and analytics. Some examples that come to mind is our Lexis Library and Lexis Practical Guidance. Lexis Library provides comprehensive online research tools to law firms and established organisations, while our Lexis Practical Guidance is a platform to assist lawyers and professionals to navigate their way through the latest legal content. Our second solution, which is a workforce solution, provides, end-to-end next generation automation and workflows to improve customer efficiency and value. Some examples that come to mind is our Lexis Convey and our Lexis Rates Clearance. Lexis Convey teams up all shareholders or stakeholders to facilitate communication in the property industry to allow smooth transfer of property, while Lexis Rates Clearance creates a paperless online solution to obtain accurate rate figures from the municipality. Finally, our risk and compliance solution provides data-driven by risk management solution to mitigate business exposure and change compliance obligations into opportunities. A few examples that come to mind is Lexis RefCheck and Lexis Procure Check. Lexis RefCheck assists us with referencing, checking of new hires in an organisation. Lexis Procure Check solution assists with

identifying potential conflicts of interest or non-disclosure of interests in an organisation.

CIARAN RYAN: That’s quite a mouthful. How do you describe your business? What are you? Are you a market resource? How would you put it if somebody asks you what is it that LexisNexis does? How do you define that in one sentence?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: We are a legal technology-driven business that looks at enhancing rule of law and compliance in the industry.

CIARAN RYAN: So you’ve got quite a range of different products there. Tell me how business has been impacted by Covid-19 and I am particularly interested to hear about your ability to service your existing client base, has that been disrupted in any way?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Covid has undoubtedly been a challenge for the communities we operate in, our customers and our staff. We saw short-term impact on the strict lockdown periods. Our product base and tool sets are largely distributed electronically, and so the business has been able to continue to offer these vital services to our customers and partners throughout the pandemic. We are similar to any other organisation and we had to adapt our ways to work remotely from home and we were able to do that effectively. We were able to mobilise our team and equipment from an office setup to a home setup within a weekend. In addition, at Lexis, we were able to provide a significant amount of free resources to help guide legal and corporate practitioners to understand how to appropriately respond to the pandemic from a legal perspective. So we are justifiably proud of not just how we were able to trade resiliently but also contribute positively to the solution required to get the [unclear] back on track for our country.

CIARAN RYAN: I’m also interested to find out if the pandemic had any effect on demand for certain products in terms of regulatory compliance, was there a shift in what customers were looking for? Maybe you can give us some intelligence on that.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Yes, we saw a dip in our transactional products and, of course, when we were on a hard lockdown there was a drop in property transfers because courts were closed, and lawyers were all closed. But at the same time, we saw an upswing in our online products in terms of Lexis Library and how to actually deal with the pandemic, looking at different employee relations codes and legislation so that we can actually offer a better service to our customers. So it was a drop in one area, but an upswing in the other.

CIARAN RYAN: So you basically had a shift in your product mix, would you say your revenue is up or down over the previous year?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: I think it balances off, so the down in the one segment resulted in the upswing of the other, so we were actually sitting at a small net increase.

CIARAN RYAN: That’s interesting, okay. So in terms of your delivery, not too much disruption, you were able to manage the shift to working from home, you’re able to stay in contact with your team, that that side has been okay.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: It was actually great; it was a theory that was challenged in terms of working from home. What we found is that a lot of the employees are more productive in a working from home setup. So we then took the decision that we actually would work remotely from home. So although our offices are open, 95% of our employees are working from home remotely.

Storytelling with numbers

CIARAN RYAN: Let’s talk about yourself, what drew you to accounting?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: My love for accounting began in grade eight when I was first introduced to it. I scored good marks and I grasped concepts quite easily. I did discover that I had a hidden talent, that I was able to tell a story with numbers, which complimented my analytical mindset and attention to detail. The passion of storytelling with numbers just grew on me and I knew that upon qualifying as a chartered accountant, it will open many career opportunities. I see accounting as a fun and enjoyable science with multiple connecting points with all areas of the business, such as human resources, operations and sales and marketing. In essence, you need to collect data from accounting records and chain turn them into meaningful analytics to carve the strategy of an organisation, and this is something that I enjoy, and it fuels my positivity in life.

CIARAN RYAN: Tell us about your career, where did you grow up and where did you study?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: I lived in a small town called Merebank, which is south of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal, one of the main iconic buildings is the old Durban international airport, the runway is visible from my parents’ backyard. So often I watch planes take off and land as a child. I went to school in Merebank and went to the old University of Natal to complete a Bachelor of Commerce and honours degree. I was fortunate to receive a bursary from PwC that allowed me to qualify as a chartered accountant. My first job was, funnily enough, a library assistant for Durban Metro Libraries while I completed my studies. So I was actually contracted to work 24 hours a month, which was excellent cash when you’re a student, and it allowed me to interact with the community.

I passed my course on my first try an then I joined PwC Durbin as a trainee accountant. In these years, my learning was phenomenal with the various clients, which PwC serviced. Sarbanes-Oxley was emerging, and I stayed on to work on Sarbanes-Oxley clients and to be the link between internal and external audit…

CIARAN RYAN: Just pause at that point, you better explain what Sarbanes-Oxley is.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Sarbanes-Oxley is literally enhancing control governance in an organisation. It is because of the various corporate failures that actually happened probably pre-2002, your Enron cases. It was a set of corporate governance that was enacted to allow us to create robust controls to prevent and detect any breaks in controls or fraud for that matter. Sarbanes-Oxley is more internal audit, so internal audit effectively drives improved controls and governance in an organisation. So at that stage, there were some miscommunications between departments, so I was tasked to link internal audit and external audit to provide more robust assurance. Then in 2008, I took a leap of faith and joined Transnet Pipelines as their financial accountant. I was glad that I was able to start getting insights on commerce and industry. While I was at Transnet Pipelines, my manager and CFO encouraged me to complete an MBA, as they felt it would be beneficial to my journey of growth. Just being married for over two years and not having any kids, I was able to start this journey. I was fortunate that half of my class was of a similar age group, and we met ten weeks for ten blocks of lectures that started at eight o’clock on a Monday morning and finished at six o’clock on a Saturday afternoon. While being at Transnet Pipelines, which was the smallest division of Transnet, it allowed me to get a holistic view of finance. After five years, I was granted the opportunity to join Transnet Freight Rail in Gauteng as the senior finance manager: taxation. This role strengthened my leadership skills and gave me the opportunity to act at an executive level and prepare presentations at a board level, and also to live the strategy of an organisation. I did two maternity covers while focusing on my role as a senior tax manager and it was then I understood the true meaning of family and I relocated back to Durban to take up a position as a tax manager at Transnet Port Terminals. Due to health issues…

CIARAN RYAN: Sorry, let me just stop you there. You did two maternity what?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Maternity covers. So while covering my current job as senior finance manager, there were two of my peers and my direct manager who were pregnant, so when they went on maternity leave I actually took on their portfolios as well.

CIARAN RYAN: Nicolaas, can we bring you in here. I’m just interested to get your take on this. The accounting marriage with the whole MBA, it seems to be an increasingly popular way for accountants to go. That does indicate that there’s some gap there, there’s some lack in the accounting curriculum. You come from an academic background as well, what’s your take on that particular route?

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: Thanks Ciaran, it’s an interesting development. I was just reading Dhiren’s LinkedIn profile and what’s interesting is that you’ve studied at the University of Natal with your BCom honours, you became a CA, I see you’re also a member of the Institute of Internal Auditors, and then at some point there was the MBA with Stellenbosch University and also executive education that you did later on. Now, that ties up very nicely with your career development, starting off as a technical accountant with Transnet, developing within the Transnet space, doing some facilitation and moderation with MANCOSA and then becoming group finance manager. Now, as group finance manager, that leads me to the overview in your LinkedIn profile, which I like very much and making a very good statement I think as an example for aspiring CFOs. One is there’s an intense desire to win, you mentioned the leadership, management and technical skills that you need to combine in a creative application of knowledge. We’ve seen that with so many CFOs, their desire to win, they are very ambitious and driven. They might not be seen as the CEO, but they invest in their own development and then end up developing their staff and being involved in all areas of the business. So I would just like to get Dhiren’s comment on that, how did he evolve into this management role as an accountant as the CFO?


Winning the hearts of employees


DHIREN MAHARAJ: For me, it’s important that you actually develop core leadership skills because it’s through those core leadership skills that you become better in terms of, how you manage your people. I think if you win the hearts of your employees, you will actually get a lot more out of them. Remember that as a leader, you would need to actually encourage growth and development in the layer below you, as well as some growth and development in the layer above you. So I think it’s important to actually create synergies and lead people so that they can actually understand their purpose in life. For me, that is actually quite important.

CIARAN RYAN: Dhiren, I don’t know if you were quite finished talking about your career, you got up to Transnet Port Terminals, but we didn’t quite get to LexisNexis, I think maybe just touch on that point before we go onto the next question. How is it that you arrived at LexisNexis?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: In August 2019 I got a random call from an in-house recruitment manager who aske me if I was keen on a new opportunity and two months later I was signed up and ready to start at LexisNexis. For me, there was lots of adjustment because my direct reporting manager is a resident of the UK and his direct reporting manager is a resident of the US. So working with the multiple time zones was new for me, especially when joining a company in December and managing the expectations of the UK and the US business. But managing financial reporting and internal control segments of finance at Lexis is fulfilling, and I was able to transition my team through coaching, to create new records of service delivery in the business, and we continue to strive for excellence.

CIARAN RYAN: How big is your team?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: I currently have eight individuals who form part of my team at LexisNexis.

CIARAN RYAN: And they’re all working remotely from home?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Yes, they all work remotely from home, and we check in once a day at 2:30pm to see if there’s anything that needs to be escalated, but it’s a quick meeting.

CIARAN RYAN: Nicolaas, do you want to jump in here?

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: As was now described by Dhiren, that’s why SAIBA developed our designation for CFOs. What we found is that there’s not really a route to becoming a CFO before we registered our designation with SAQA. We linked that specifically with a BCom and an MBA to provide for this leadership development that’s necessary. As part of that we link up internationally with global CFOs and it’s quite an interesting development globally how the majority of CFOs are starting to come from non-accounting qualifications. As businesses start to specialise, they need senior managers in that CFO role and then they get supported by technical accountants, which is quite interesting, I just want to mention this to our audience, we are hosting this CFO World Congress in Mexico in November, where CFOs from all over the world are coming together. It seems like the world is regearing again for networking in a face-to-face manner and we’re very excited to be able to participate in that. So we are building and networking with CFOs globally and ensuring that…I think our ideal position is that there should be some kind of standard for CFOs that they can aspire to. So it was wonderful to hear how Dhiren has been developing from studying into this group financial CFO.

CIARAN RYAN: It is interesting. I think the stats that we have in Europe are that by far the majority of people in CFO positions come from non-accounting backgrounds. They come from town planning, engineering, all sorts of odd routes they take to get to the CFO position. But that does show you that it’s a role that has evolved, it’s far removed from its accounting roots, would you say, Nicolaas?

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: Yes, that’s definitely the case, it’s a management role, there’s a steward function, an operator function, a catalyst and a strategist. More and more companies like Lexis Nexis are focusing on that strategic catalyst element, how do you use finance to transform the understanding of the staff members to build a better business.

‘To me it’s all about driving innovation, creativity and strategy.’

CIARAN RYAN: Dhiren, would you agree with that, the accounting core of the senior finance executive or the CFO position has changed and you’re doing a lot more management type of work, the kind of curricula that you would engage with on an MBA, for example, like strategic management, team management, the softer skills, would you agree with that?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Most definitely, I think the job of a CFO has actually moved from the technical accountant or the technical role of holding a purse towards a role that is how can we actually drive strategy and grow a business and look at it from the perspective of for every one cent that I give to the business, how many cents am I getting back?

So I think that is something that is quite key and leadership potential I think is quite important in a CFO role. Also, again, the non-traditional CAs are actually emerging quite well in terms of CFO roles, because to me it’s all about driving innovation, creativity and strategy.

CIARAN RYAN: On that subject, why don’t you just spend a minute talking about some of the biggest challenges that you’ve had to face? Sometimes it’s just the study part, how do you get through the exams? What were the challenges that you’ve had to face on your career journey?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: For me, one of the biggest challenges was actually rank and power. So I was young and I was indoctrinated with the mindset that your employer knows best and you must always respect the decision of your manager. So for me, respect meant that I should not challenge those decisions. Being in your early twenties, you are afraid to speak up to dispel perceptions, and you needed more experience in diversity management. So being a junior on the job, it’s easy to receive the blame and for the truth to be concealed. So I did accept it for a period of time until it hits your wallet and that is when I decided to change my mindset and I decided to speak up, and this created an awareness of truth and the truth will always resurface. Luckily for me, it did. But in hindsight, thankfully this is actually getting a lot better because there’s a lot more intervention in terms of leadership training and most organisations are creating a focus on diversity management as well. So that actually allows us to move away from the concept of a manager and to the concept of a leader. But I must admit that after years of experience and life lessons, I’ll often tell my team that I’m willing to accept the trip, no matter how bitter it is but I would be able to support a lie or help out in terms of contributing something that is not the truth.

CIARAN RYAN: Would you say there were some influences there in your career who guided you to…that’s an integrity point, right? As an accountant, you have to make a stand, you cannot lie. That is one thing that we do not expect or tolerate from accountants. So were there influences there that put your feet firmly on that road?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Yes, definitely, I think when you’re actually facing those situations, you generally are asked for guidance from others, and you look at how you can actually develop yourself. I think if you look at all these various tools out there that people introduced me to and helped me to actually overcome that sort of [introvertedness] sort of styles that I did have while I was actually evolving as an accountant.

CIARAN RYAN: Okay, do you want to name who they were, who were the influences?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: There are two who come to mind, the first is Dr Babita Mathur-Helm, who helped me to reshape and unlock my potential. She was a clinical psychologist by profession and she was a resident lecturer and coach at the University of Stellenbosch, who helped me to understand that success does not equate to just climbing to the top of a corporate ladder but it’s actually driven by happiness and self-fulfillment, with a strong element of EQ. It helped me to overcome those challenges and channel my energy in the right direction. I think the one thing that I definitely appreciated was just crisp and brutally honest that helped me to understand myself better so that I can give off better in different spheres of my life. But unfortunately, she did pass away three years ago, so that was quite tragic. Then the other was my first manager in the world of Transnet, so she pushed me to work harder and create opportunities to grow, and she trusted me and created a platform to showcase my leadership potential. So I landed up working for three different operating divisions because of her and she actually helped me to think out of the box and innovate. I often think of a famous quote that I hold quite close to my heart and that is “If we win the hearts and minds of our employees, we are going to achieve better business success.” I’m a firm believer that if you actually drive your employees in the right direction and win their hearts, you’ll be able to get a lot more out of them.

‘We often do virtual team building events.’

CIARAN RYAN: Right, so that works both up and down the organising board, right? So it’s gaining the hearts and minds of employees and the employers as well.

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: That capturing the hearts and minds I think that is the new frontier for CFOs. If you think of a typical accountant, those aren’t the guys with the greatest personalities because they’re driven on finance and numbers and making tough decisions. But what we’re hearing now from Dhiren is that we need to be emotionally intelligent. It’s more than that, we need to use various means and methods to get the staff on board to give their commitment and support to the company. Now, that has been made even more difficult with the lockdown, creating fear and people being anxious and getting depressed. So how do you in these circumstances still get them to believe in a mission of a company because I think that is a strong element for our own designation for CFOs and it comes back to Dhiren’s point that he wants to win. Maybe Dhiren can just explain more to us about how he goes about winning the minds and hearts of his staff.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: I think the first thing is to actually build trust in a team and you build trust through doing team building. So we often do virtual team building events so that we get to understand each other a lot better, and we understand which are the levers that we can pull and the levers that we can push. The other thing is doing one-on-one coaching with each individual so that you get a sense of their personal journey and where they want to go to and interweave it into one cloth to create the strategy of the department, which, of course, will talk to the strategy of the company. So to me, it’s about winning their hearts and understanding a person as a person. So it is going to be a lot of give and take. There are certain days when employees need an hour or two off, which you need to be compassionate about and understand their predicament as well. In doing so, I often find that they’ll give you a lot back when the needs of the business need to be taken as a priority. I think it’s just finding that balance and creating that win-win situation to keep everyone [unclear].

CIARAN RYAN: Interesting. Dhiren, are there some lessons that you’re only going to learn through experience, that you’re not going to pick up in the classroom?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: That is a tough one. I believe that there are some lessons that you can only learn through experience. You can share the experience of others, but unless you feel the emotions, you would not be able to understand that experience. For example, how to move from failure or face your fears or feel loved or be patient. I think often I see myself as a leader, as a learner, as experience is fundamental to my learning journey. So you can read widely about experiences, but if you don’t feel them, you wouldn’t be able to conclude whether they actually right or wrong. I guess, yes, you definitely need to go through the experience to learn through some life lessons.

CIARAN RYAN: Okay, a couple of questions here before we wrap up, what do you do in your downtime?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: During my downtime, I generally spend time with my two kids who are aged six and four, and my wife. We often try to create magical moments of excitement by stimulating the kids with creativity and fun. We like the outdoors, so I often find I spend a lot of time doing hiking trails or spending time on the beach, or even just taking a long walk. I must admit that I do spend an hour on a Saturday listening to spiritual music and that helps me to re-energise myself for the week and clear my mind to focus on my family. I sometimes like to meditate but that’s actually quite a challenge when having two small kids around you. I often find that I’m most creative and innovative during my period of relaxation, that helps me to develop a circle of influence on my personal and professional level. But now with Covid, I often see myself sitting on a grass patch at home, doing self-reflection or if all else fails, I would watch a comedy movie. Then on a weekday it’s, of course, getting the kids’ homework ready and then getting them ready for supper and bed because they are small and they need lots of attention. Once they’re asleep, I tend to enjoy playing a few games of Sudoku or just planning some type of activity for the family for the week.

CIARAN RYAN: Interesting. Nicolaas, I don’t think I’ve ever asked you that question. What do you do in your downtime?

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: There are family responsibilities that one should do and that takes your mind off business. But these days I tend to feel that I am just always thinking and working. My personality is one where I always need to be thinking about new things and making [unclear]. I’m lucky with SAIBA that I really enjoy the work that I do, so that is like relaxation, just being involved with SAIBA. I do read a lot, there’s a variety of books that I read. Having spiritual time, reflecting is so important. Luckily, I have been redeployed by SAIBA to work in Cape Town and the weather here has just been amazing. So I walk on the beach when the sun is shining, it brings you into perspective and it makes you realise that it doesn’t matter how busy you are during the day and how big your problems seem to be, but when you look at the ocean, you see how small you really are, and that brings in a new sense of humility. It’s that humility, I think, as I get older that I seem to appreciate much more because you have to have respect for everybody else in society who are working together, whether it’s a small business owner or big industrialists or civil society, we are all interconnected, working together to make things better. Therefore, I’ve recently realised that you have to respect civilisation. It’s something that we as humans have built up over thousands of years to get to the point where we are now. So I think respect and humility for the system in which you will operate, I think that’s important. Yes, so relaxation is with the family, a bit of exercising and then a good meditative walk on the beach does amazing things.

‘Once you discover the purpose of your leadership, you’ll find the true leader inside you.’

CIARAN RYAN: It does indeed. Dhiren, last question here, are there any books that you would recommend, something that really gripped you and altered the course of your life maybe?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: I’m more of an article reader. Often, I read Harvard business articles and I follow the Journal of Values-Based leadership that is published every quarter by Valparaiso University’s College of Business because I’m actually passionate about authentic leadership, and I always believe that our personal leadership journey is what helps us to give of our best in our professional life. But if I think of books, two do come to mind, the first one was a book that was introduced to me by my former chief executive and that is Discover Your True North by Bill George. In essence, this books says that once you discover the purpose of your leadership, you’ll find the true leader inside you. This book shows you how to use natural leadership abilities to inspire and empower others to excel in today’s complex world. Then the second book, which I have just completed reading, is Powerful Leadership Through Coaching: Principles, Practices, and Tools for Leaders and Managers at Every Level by Michael K. Simpson. In this book, if you are looking for a gamechanger in your organisation, it is an excellent tool to create high-performance culture and focus on continued improvement and the need for change to actually evolve.

CIARAN RYAN: So it sounds like what it’s advocating there, just from the title, is that your own personal growth comes from coaching others. If you’ve got something that you can hand on to others or teach to others, you should do that as part of your own growth journey, rather than holding it to yourself. So much of the self-improvement books that we come across really are very inward-looking and focused on me, and don’t really look at my connection to other people. Am I correct in saying that?

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Yes, definitely, if you’re looking at leadership, you’re looking at organisational leadership. So if you can unlock the potential of others, it will actually help you to self-develop and also allow synergies in the business so that you can actually improve the bottom line.

CIARAN RYAN: Wow, okay, those are two very interesting recommendations there. Thank you so much for that. We’re going to leave it there, that was a fascinating discussion with Dhiren Maharaj and I am very happy to learn about LexisNexis and the kind of company that it is because it’s a name that you come across, but for somebody to summarise it the way that you did, I think that was fascinating for me. Also, your journey, I get the sense that you’re very driven, there’s definite empathy there in the way that you approach your position, I’m pretty sure I am correct in saying that. You really have a target in mind but at the same time, you haven’t lost your anchoring in terms of your spiritual background, so I like that balance that you brought to this conversation and I think our listeners will appreciate that. What do you think, Nicolaas, that was quite fascinating on many different levels for us, both as accountants and professionals?

NICOLAAS VAN WYK: Definitely, it goes to show that if you have a clear path to where you want to go, a goal and you cut it up into little pieces, and you build support structures around that, you are likely to be successful. So it’s not a gamble, if you study accounting and you become a CFO, it’s one of the surest ways to make a proper living. That’s what SAIBA wants to assist all accountants to achieve.

CIARAN RYAN: Great stuff. Okay, Dhiren, we’re going to leave it there. Thanks very much for coming on and talking to us on CFO Talks, I really do appreciate you taking the time and also to Nicolaas for joining us this morning.

DHIREN MAHARAJ: Thank you for the opportunity to feature on this podcast and thank you to the listeners. I just want to end by his famous saying that I normally use when I’m actually changing departments and it’s something that I’m not sure who actually wrote it, but it’s something that I think is quite meaningful to the wider audience. That is “Don’t let the shadows of your past eclipse the brightness of your future.” So I think it’s important to always make sure that there is self-development and to grow. So listeners, thank you so much and take care and stay safe.

Ciaran is a seasoned journalist and podcast host. He has a back-ground in finance and mining, having pre-viously headed up a gold mining operation in Ghana.In this podcast he interviews various CFOs, get-ting more detail on the role of the CFO and their daily challenges and solutions.


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