We meet Capitec employee and forward-thinking female, Tracey Harmse, and look back at her journey and rise to the top
This week, to honour inspiring females that have proudly forged their way to the top of their various professions, we spend some time with and get to know Capitec employee of 16 years , Tracey Harmse. Tracey rose in her career from a call centre agent to Head of Credit Book Control and Recoveries at Capitec Business Bank, despite the circumstances and family tragedy she’s come through.
Tracey shares, “I’m from a previously disadvantaged background. I grew up in an area called Ravensmead. My grandmother, Sophia, was a seamstress and a domestic worker. She raised me with my father who was a musician, a policeman and then later in his life, a school teacher. My mom had a ten-year journey with cancer and we had her on oxygen machines in our house. It was quite intense – my high school years. My grandmother was my stability, but what made her so powerful was her teachings of our faith to me. She taught me to pray big, to believe big and to work hard.”
Despite these challenges, Tracey, post high school, started her law degree at UWC. Unfortunately, after her dad’s passing, she never got the chance to do her articles, as life’s responsibilities as the breadwinner in her family meant she had to make a different choice. Her promise to herself, that one day she would do her articles – and at a top firm – was something, this female force would see come true.
From that legal grounding, it was Tracey’s post-grad honours in business which led the young dynamo to see the world in colours she never thought possible and her mind, and subsequent future, was totally unlocked. She reveals, “The UCT experience did not only change my academic career but it changed my professional, as well as, my personal career. My finances started shifting. For the first time, I was equipped with financial skills to make better financial, personal decisions, as well as better decisions within the organisations and the people I interacted with.”
Having gone on to earn her MBA and after sixteen years at a bank which matches her levels of endeavour, today, Tracey manages teams in four different cities in her role at Capitec.
Tracey goes on to say, “The reason I love working at Capitec is that Capitec and I have something in common. We are both purpose-orientated when it comes to consumers and businesses and ensuring we effect change. I have a deep need to serve. My current role provides me with an opportunity to provide businesses with sustainable solutions to help them navigate their way out of bad financial situations. We are operating in such difficult financial economic times and businesses need us to help them bank better, so that they can live better, get back in the economy, help us create jobs and help us grow this nation.”
Tracey takes us back to the Ravensmead library, where her mom worked, to meet Aunty Clara and discover the first place, where her passion for learning was ignited. Then, we join her in Stellenbosch at work, to chat to some of the important people that have been instrumental in her career journey from her executive that first employed her, to her mentor and mentee, she has since influenced and guided, in the same manner she had received. Finally, we get the chance to share a little of her personal self-expression in a salsa dance class, which provides her the opportunity to destress and unwind.
With employees like Tracey Harmse forging change and inspiring others, Capitec can continue to provide the best service possible to all of their customers and are proud to have females of her drive and stature within their organisation.
Capitec Weekly Competition:
If you recognise this dynamic young woman’s same pride and drive when you look in the mirror, you stand a chance of winning a R1000 cash prize, courtesy of Capitec. Tell us about your plan for yourself and simply reply to the competition post on theinsidersa.co.za social media platforms using #LiveBetterWithCapitec. Ts&Cs apply and can be found on The Insider SA website. The competition closes at midnight on Sunday 26 February. Ts&Cs apply and can be found here (link to Ts&Cs).