On 28 May 2020 , my fellow long serving colleague, Debbie MacIntyre, Research and Marketing Services Director at SPARK Media, (with 34 years of service) and I, (39 years of service), received a suspension notice from the company. There was no prior warning or any indication that there was a problem with our performance.
This was made even more traumatic as we were still trying to come to terms with the untimely death of our boss, Piet Greyling, as well as coping with working remotely and dealing with the challenges of lockdown.
Three weeks later, we both received a number of charges, based on the findings of an internal audit.
This resulted in an internal disciplinary process, which lasted for three months.
During this time, we were forbidden from contacting any clients or staff, as per the terms of our suspension.
These hearings resulted in my dismissal last week (Debbie remains on suspension)
As committed and loyal staff, we are of the firm belief, that the entire process has been grossly unfair and inhumane.
I have held senior positions within the group for over 30 years, and have reported to three board members during this time. I have always had their trust and respect and at no stage has my integrity ever been questioned. My record with the company has been flawless.
I am supported by an excellent legal team and we intend to proceed with the next steps in the process.
It is our intention to work towards a mutually fair and equitable resolution and favourable outcome for all involved.
Until such time, I will reserve further commentary about this unfortunate matter.
I would also just like to take this opportunity to thank my many industry friends for all the messages and encouragement received during this very traumatic time.
Your unwavering support has given me the courage and strength to persevere.