Management in Africa

New book by Vasco Silva and Alette Vonk

This book presents an inspirational case study of Vasco Silva, a Portuguese businessman who established a business in Luanda, Angola. After four years of growth, Silva encounters a culture shock due to a wild strike by the employees. He embarks on a deep cultural exploration and gradually, gains an understanding of effective leadership in the Angolan context. He initiates an organizational change project and together with the employees they transform the company to serve all and manage to merge Angolan concepts of leadership and organization into this foreign multinational.

Consequently, Alette Vonk has collaborated with Silva, interviewed managers and employees and she has put the whole case in its historic as well as scientific context.

For entrepreneurs/managers

This story shows what it takes to be successful in an African professional environment. Some may want to embrace the whole story and go through a similar process like Silva did. In those cases, it will always need tailor making because, as we know, Africa is a large and diverse continent. Both similarities and differences can be found among the 54 countries.

Others will want to make smaller changes, gain insight, be inspired. In any case, the book provides many ideas and clear direction.

“An invaluable guide for international leaders, providing insights into crafting novel management approaches based on a fusion of values.” (Manuel Quinaz, CEO at upK, SA).

For researchers

Scientifically, the work contributes to the discourse in African management philosophy and responds to the demand for descriptive accounts of hybrid case studies of confluencing cultures. Scholars can utilize this case study to explore indigenous African notions, demonstrating the performative characteristics of local leadership forms within business environments, and the flexibility for adaptation from both Angolan and Portuguese perspectives.

“An inspiring study on community building, shared values and transformative cultures in an African society.” (Dr. Michael Onyebuchi Eze, Lecturer African Philosophy, Leiden University).


In case you want more information and background stories, go to

Vasco Freitas Silva and Alette Vonk.