When the business of the company you’re leading is life and death, your approach tends to be different to that of other business leaders.
Chairman and CEO Prakash Devchand, the man leading the Lenmed community-based private hospital group, is living evidence of this. The Lenmed group started as a community group, founded by the residents of the Lenasia suburb in Johannesburg in 1984 – because at that time black people were not allowed in white-owned private hospitals. Each family was asked to contribute R5 000 to build the first 48-bed hospital. Today the group remains majority-owned by the founding community. However it has grown significantly under Devchand, a finalist in the 2011 Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Awards.
The group now has hospitals throughout the country, as well as in Botswana and Mozambique, (and is looking towards Nigeria, Ghana and the rest of the continent) but nevertheless Devchand still lives by the principles with which he first set out.