Angé Baard and Betty Hardcastle are a dynamic duo, who bring positivity, and charisma to everything that they do. Angé obtained her Honours Degree in Human Resources Management at the University of Stellenbosch, while Betty obtained her Masters of Law (LLM Law) and Masters of Business Administration (MBA), also at the University of Stellenbosch. Angé and Betty, with a small team, run two businesses; Kaleidoscope, which drives business performance through people, and Petit Love, a luxury baby boutique. Angé and Betty met during their time at the Platinum Group, and hit it off almost immediately. Their background in high-end retail, makes them a pair quite unlike any other, especially when it comes to consistently putting the customer first.
Who has been your single biggest influence?
Angé: I think Betty, and I both believe that role models are not people “out there”, but rather those who are right next you, in the trenches. The ones driving your dream as hard as you are. With that context, my answer is my business partner; Betty.
I’ll never forget the day I met her, others would have thought us to be an unlikely fit. But, before long, we both knew that we’d go into business together one day. We enjoyed working, enjoyed working together (I hope that’s still true, Bets), and thrived when others thrived around us. Call it synergy, call it the universe setting us up for incredible things, but Betty was, and still is, a huge driver as to why I decided to start this business (with her).
I believe you can create a lifestyle you love to live (work and play), and Betty has encouraged me every step of the way. She’s been my greatest critic, and my biggest supporter in my business journey thus far.
What are you celebrating this Women’s Month?
Angé & Betty: The many strong women in our lives. Work and play. We are very fortunate to be in a space where we have attracted very strong women into our lives, and we have a great community of like-minded women. It is (definitely) not without men, and the strong men around us have steered us to be strong in our own right, but women play a significant role overall.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received from another woman who can?
Betty: My business partner Angé taught me to be excellent in what I do well, but to also make sure that what I do is not everything, because you cannot be excellent at everything.
What change would you like to see for womankind in the future?
Angé & Betty: Maya Angelou sums it up for us, ‘each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it, possibly without claiming it, she stands up for all women’.
What makes you proud to be a South African woman?
Angé: I know that ‘Afro-optimism’ has become a bit of a buzzword of late, but I truly am an ‘Afro-optimist’. A couple of years ago, I was considering immigrating to the UK, and I went to explore the opportunity. However, I quickly realised that my heart lives in South Africa. (That’s another reason Betty and I resonate).
As South Africans, we have the beauty of our country (I mean, who can look at Table Mountain, and not smile), but most importantly, we have the people, and the culture that I deeply believe in, and get goosebumps talking about.
We are strong, independent, creative, and I’ve been lucky enough to be surrounded with men who have respected, and driven my career as much as the woman have. When I look around me, and the community I am part of, I believe in our future. South Africa is a country that has supported, and nurtured me, and I have been exceptionally privileged, and believe I owe it to our country to give back, and play my part in growing the success of our future generations.
We are privileged to have a landscape which enables women to play a significant role, and I’m so excited to be a part of it.
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Photographer: Jonathon Ferreira
Disclaimer: The opinions and views expressed in this blog post are those of the interviewees, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sprout Creative PR.