By Jamaine Krige

Skilled to ensure the success of a community radio station

Brenda Leonard, alumna of the FP&M Seta-funded fraycollege of Communications Media Management Programme said that the programme not only enhanced her career, but also equipped her to deal with crises in a more professional manner. The programme, which first ran in 2014 is supported

Leonard is the managing director of Bush Radio in Cape Town and was part the teamed involved in transforming the station from a radio project to a radio station. She was instrumental in preparing for Bush Radio’s first licence application and public hearing, as well as all subsequent applications and hearings. Leonard was also instrumental in writing Bush Radio’s policies and procedures manual and ensuring that these policies are gender sensitive.

“Learning from the peers in class was very valuable, because attendees were from across the media spectrum (print and broadcasting). It allowed me to build a network and until today some of us are still in regular contact,” she said.

Leonard says the course presentation was of a very high standard because the lecturers were clearly experts in their field.

“They were extremely knowledgeable, and this was clear in their engagement with the course attendees,” she said. 

Leonard has been Bush Radio’s managing director since 2010, running the radio station and its projects, as well as working for the financial sustainability thereof.

“As a managing director who regularly deals with financial reports, the course managed to take my financial skills to a higher level. I had some foundational knowledge of finances and financial reports, but after the course I’m definitely better equipped.” she said.

“What I really liked about the programme is the one-one-one mentoring with Paula Fray. It specifically helped me to identify the challenges I am facing as a manager and how to deal with it. That is different to any other course I have attended, and it added real value to the whole experience,” Leonard said.

She added that Fray’s mentoring helped her to identify her strength and weaknesses as a manager and enhanced her skills and knowledge of her field of work.

Leonard added, “when I returned from the course, I was able to address issues, including staff support and mentoring more efficiently. I was able to also focus more on performance management, even during Covid-19 and the lockdown period.”

Leonard highly recommends the course to others, especially those who want to improve their management skills. “The course will definitely prepare individuals in the media industry for future challenges and equip them with the knowledge to overcome any obstacles in the workplace”.