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Connecting Africa’s Skilled Professionals
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ReConnect Africa is a unique website and online magazine for the African professional in the Diaspora. Packed with essential information about careers, business and jobs, ReConnect Africa keeps you connected to the best of Africa.

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‘What I learned along the way is…
…how to unlearn everything - received wisdom is often 'wrong.’

I was educated…

…both in Ghana and in the United Kingdom.   I went to Achimota Secondary School up until my O-levels but by then my mother moved to Kenya, so I was sent to the UK to study at Cranleigh School and later at University College, London and Cass (City University) Business School. As an Undergraduate I took two courses at once in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering emerging with a First.  I went on to do research towards a doctorate in Biochemical Engineering.  I attended night-school to study economics during this period. Informally I continue to be educated.  In a world where change is now happening faster than the ability of most of us, or our institutions, to learn, one has to be very complacent and slightly deluded to think that they can stop learning.

My first job was…

…a holiday job stocktaking in a warehouse closely followed by an internship at the Shell Haven Refinery.

Professor Eddie Obeng was born in Africa and brought up with a strong oral tradition which makes him a great orator and presenter. The holder of a double First Class degree in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, he was, at 32, the youngest business school Executive Director in Europe.

Following an early career with Shell, which ‘prepared him for globalisation and complexity’, Professor Obeng set up Pentacle in 1994 to act as a living experiment for his tools and techniques and to prove the practicality of the ‘virtual working’ he espouses.

Most of Professor Obeng’s current work revolves around what he describes as the 'New World' environment. He has taken to heart the structural changes in the global economy and has started from scratch, with creativity, insight and a clean sheet of paper to research issues and invent solutions to the range of pressures and challenges that the New World poses to organisations and especially businesses. He works on understanding how best to manage and deliver successful business strategies in the high paced, non-linear, highly competitive world where almost all industry barriers are blurred, how to allow people to work together to their fullest potential and happiness through teams, virtual and real, and through appropriate organisational structures, and how to harness and use information and knowledge through technology to achieve business success. In addition he works hard to understand effective and timely new models and mechanisms for delivering learning to executives and managers in the New World.

Eddie Obeng is one of the most exciting speakers and in the past few years he has presented keynote talks at numerous public conferences. He is author of numerous articles and books which are designed to make it easy for managers to share ideas and concepts with their colleagues. He has concentrated on redefining important and 'hot' management topics as they apply in the New World.

What I do now is…

…I am an entrepreneur/business educator.  I run Pentacle, the world’s most innovative school, teaching applied business-knowledge and providing inspiration and education to leaders and managers in our fast-changing, complex and demanding world.  We were the first to build an e-learning platform, the first to create a complete “curriculum” designed for today not the 1990’s, the first to use virtual reality for teaching and several other firsts.  We also provide provocation for ‘old world’ managers and leaders who, in refusing to change, stifle the dreams and aspirations of others.

What I learned along the way is…

…how to unlearn everything - received wisdom is often 'wrong'.  In addition, that human beings are amazing, that your family and real friends are what make you, that it is important to remember that the world isn’t just made up of people, to keep a positive mental attitude and move forward with big dreams one step at a time.

My greatest influence has been…

…hard to pin down since I have many significant influences.  My wife Susan who reminds me to be myself and reminds me why I work so hard, my mother, Letitia who reminds me of what can be, and many mentors along the way especially John Frank who not only taught me economics but also taught me to teach, ‘Inky’ Clark (Cranleigh) who broke my belief in relying on my memory and helped me to rely on clear thought instead,  Prof. Garside (University College London) who responded positively when I explained that I had noticed ‘patterns’ in chemical engineering which meant I only had to understand a third of the syllabus  in order to explain it all.  Eli Goldratt (author of The Goal) who forever influenced my approach to academic research and my writing style along with Richard Bach (author of Illusions) leading to my publication of ten books including the favourite best seller All Change! There are many others too numerous to mention.

The best advice I ever received is…

...I’ve probably not been listening, but I tend not to be given advice.  The best ‘advice’ or more so, a mantra, I absorbed from the Bible begins ...a little sleep, a little slumber... which has always energised me when my energy levels are low.  The best I have ever received in business is that “free advice costs you nothing until you put it into practice!”

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