Former Springbok rugby player Joel Stransky says the robot apocalypse is still some time away, luckily. Picture: MOELETSI MABE
Former Springbok rugby player Joel Stransky says the robot apocalypse is still some time away, luckily. Picture: MOELETSI MABE

Tell me about Pivotal Talent.

We started the Pivotal Group six years ago and our focus has been in the tech and data space. Many of our clients were involved in the contact centre industry and we solved their issues in the telephony and tech space, and we could see there were some staffing issues. About two years ago we began Pivotal Talent. It allows us to offer our clients more.

What do you do at work each day?

Most importantly, try to drive revenues - sales. We are an entrepreneurial environment and sales are most important. There are days where other issues need my attention to ensure smooth running of our business - technology, delivery and finance.

How did you find yourself there?

I began my business career in the commercial side of sport at MegaPro and then ended up in the tech world running the Altech Netstar Group. Once I left the corporate world, the tech space, particularly disruptive technology, was always going to be the direction I took.

How did playing rugby prepare you to run your business?

I think it, along with having coached for a while, helped develop management and leadership skills which carry over in the staff environment and help in building relationships with clients. But other elements of business and running a business are about experience and mentorship.

Pivotal Talent uses artificial intelligence.Is the robot apocalypse near?

Ha-ha! Robots running the world are probably a realistic threat, but that is some time away. Our solution uses AI in two areas.

First, to make objective and accurate decisions in recruitment and talent management by assessing the predictors of performance of individuals against their job profile, or any job profile for that matter. And second, AI is used by the system/machine to constantly improve its ability to deliver accurate results over a long period.

What did you want to be when you were a child?

A professional sportsman! I have always been sports mad.

What about your job gets you out of bed each day?

I work with some amazing people. Add to this we have a number of businesses in our stable that are quite diverse, so every day is a little different. But most importantly I have a passion for young people. I have no doubt that my company can assist in identifying talent and help teenagers in making the right choices in terms of their careers.

What about your job keeps you awake at night?

Cash flow. All our businesses were or are "start-ups", so it feels like we are constantly battling to gain traction.

What would you do if you could not do this job?

Probably coach rugby. It is wonderful to play a role in developing young talent and watching them achieve their potential.

What qualifications do you have?

The one thing I regret in life is not having finished my degree. I headed off to play professional rugby. So my qualification is the hard school of life.

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