In the final analysis, the one quality that all successful people have … is the ability to take on responsibility – Michael Korda

Katleho Ayanda Mokgopa, Senior Sales Account Executive at CloudSmiths, and the company’s very own musical prodigy, says he loves working in a company “filled with intelligent and talented individuals who are always willing to teach and lend support.”

Ayanda describes this culture of inclusivity as “embracing individuals for who they are and giving them a platform to engage with others, while still being true to themselves and the things that make them unique.”

And why is he so outspoken about this culture at CloudSmiths? It’s because he has experienced it first hand: As a succesful sales person by day, Ayanda also has a successful music career by night. He recently walked away with an international award. “I was not expecting so much support from my colleagues when I won the rap-a-verse challenge and it meant a lot to me that I was able to share this moment with the people I work with even though it was not linked to my work as a salesperson – I am definitely a proud Smith!”

Ayanda has worked in sales for the last 6 years and recently joined CloudSmiths. Since then he has “enjoyed working with this talented and dynamic team.” His role as Account Executive involves looking after valued clients and prospecting for new business.

As a salesperson, he naturally aims to bring in as much revenue as possible; and in this process of achieving, it is important to him to remain reliable and accountable, he explains. “The experience of growing up in the township has always kept me motivated to strive for more, so that I can give my whole family an even better quality of life.”

“I love coming with new and improved ways of doing things, so I am always trying to improve as an individual and help others improve where possible. More than anything, I love to see people around me doing well and flourishing, so I always provide support where I can, whether it’s in the form of some advice or sharing a good laugh with a colleague.”

Born in a relatively quiet part of Katlehong, called Credi Section, Ayanda grew up with his mom, grandparents and aunt in the early years. He admits that “as a first born child, I was definitely treated like a big deal, especially by my late grandfather (Mom’s father) and late grandmother (dad’s mother) so this meant lots of tea drinking and soccer watching 😊.”

His primary education was at Bedfordview Primary school, and then onto Sunward Park High. He matriculated at Sedaven school and then completed his degree in marketing management with the IMM in 2013.

His first job was with a company called CQS (now CaseWare Africa) as a graduate account manager and this is where he cut his teeth in sales and account management. After a few years, he joined LexisNexis for roughly 18 months and, in January of 2020, he became a “proud Smith.”

“My dad was always the benchmark for me. He became very successful at a young age and he is genuinely a ‘smart dude’. My mother moulded me into the person I am – she taught me how to interact with different people and, most importantly, the skill of empathy.”

Along his journey, there have been many different challenges, but Ayanda strives to be someone who comes up with a solution and not a problem. “I learned the power of taking responsibility and thinking innovatively at a young age.”

This is the message that he would like to pass on to young adults facing challenges: “Take responsibility and come up with a solution, even if you make mistakes sometimes – it is important to get into the habit of thinking and acting proactively.”