The role of responsible business leaders in SA Stellenbosch Business School Skip to main content
What is the role of a responsible business leader in South Africa, was the question asked by Sim Tshabalala, CEO of Standard Bank

He says the first is to articulate a clear purpose and that profit-making should be done within the rules of the game.

He was the keynote speaker at the USB-Kgalema Motlanthe Leadership Lecture Series, a prestigious annual event hosted by the University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB) and the Kgalema Motlanthe Foundation on Thursday, 31 October 2019.

During his address Tshabalala also referred to German sociologist Max Weber’s lecture, Politics as a Vocation. “Weber defines two kinds of responsibilities that strategic leaders should fill.

“These are the ethics of responsibility and the ethic of ultimate realities. Every important decision that a leaders makes is both a decision to do something and not to do something else. A responsible leader will be acutely aware of opportunity cost and will work hard to reduce such costs,” he said.


Former President Kgalema Motlanthe said the Foundation has two purposes. “The Kgalema Motlanthe Foundation focuses on dialogue among equals and education,” he said.


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