President, Global Markets
Sharmla Chetty is the President of Global Markets for Duke Corporate Education. An innovative non-conformist with the strong commercial drive to see opportunities where others see challenges, her passion includes working in the areas of corporate social responsibility, board leadership and contributing to the development of female leaders.
Prior to her appointment as President of Global Markets, Sharmla served as President for Duke CE Africa, Global Managing Director for Europe and Regional Managing Director of Africa. Sharmla opened the South Africa office in 2007 and helped build Duke CE into Africa’s preeminent corporate education provider. Through her work at Duke CE, Sharmla has for the past eight years passionately grown the next generation of African leaders and played an active role in public and private sector organisations to transform and develop the skills and capabilities needed by African companies to win on the world stage.
In her current role, Sharmla leads market growth strategies for Duke CE globally and for each of the company’s regional offices in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. Her expertise includes a strong focus on driving strategy through leadership development by working at the intersection between strategy, culture and people, understanding the capabilities needed to transform businesses and successfully navigating complex stakeholder environments. Sharmla leads client relationship management, advisory work and leadership solutions to build strategic capacity and capabilities for clients. In doing so, she helps prepare leaders to face new challenges, solve business issues, and shape a better future for their organisations. Key to her success is her ability to build resilient business disciplines and networks with leaders in industry, key political stakeholders, community leaders, academic institutions and consulting partners, enlisting her local team to be part of the process.
An expert in emerging markets, Sharmla brings a “glocal” perspective to clients, merging global best perspectives with local understanding. She has experience working in a range of industries including financial services, healthcare, mining, petroleum and FMCG. She also has extensive experience working in many regions including including the USA, Europe, Africa, China and India.
Prior to joining Duke CE, Sharmla was Head of Human Capital Development at Nedbank for over 19 years, where she was focused on building the next-generation leadership pipeline. Sharmla is currently a board trustee for the AVI Group of black shares scheme. She previously served as a non-executive director for Bigen Africa as well as on several board sub-committees including the Remuneration committee, Audit and Risk committee and as Chair of the Social and Ethics Committee. She is a Chairperson of the BCG Development Trust and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. As part of an Aspen fellowship programme, she has implemented the Women Leading Africa Board Programme building Pan-African bench strength for women serving on board positions for Africa.
Sharmla was a finalist for Business Woman of the Year Award in 2016 for Education and recipient of the 2016 Award for Entrepreneurial and Academic Excellence on the African Continent. As part of the Duke CE Davos of Human Capital event, Sharmla also founded #MillionYoungMinds, a live stream with Sophia the Robot to one million South African youth on the topic of artificial intelligence and its impact on the future of South Africa. She is also a founding member of a mentoring circle designed to mentor and coach South African youth.
She obtained her MBA from Henley Management Business School in the UK and a Masters in Management and Executive Coaching from Wits Business School. Sharmla studied at Johannesburg University and holds a qualification in Human Resources Development.
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