A day in the life of Prasheem Maharaj AMBCI

  • 06 Jun 2023
  • Prasheem

On behalf of the BCI’s Southern Africa Chapter, this article will explore a ‘day in the life’ of one of its members and how they are creating change in the workplace and beyond.

Prasheem Maharaj AMBCI is a Senior Manager for Business Continuity (BC), Cyber Security and GRC. He currently manages a team of specialists who deliver subject matter expertise regarding the implementation and management of BCMS (ISO 22301), Data Protection Managed Services, Information Security (ISO 27001) and PCI DSS to a wide variety of clients across Africa.

A day in the working life of Prasheem:

  • My day starts with daily stand-up meetings (scrums), based on the Agile methodology.
  • I also have check-ins with each of the functional heads in our environment, look at any impediments which the teams face and understand how to remove them or, if they require training and awareness, then I plan this into the calendar of activities.
  • Coffee breaks which also double-up as quick catch-ups with other team members around the coffee station. Lengthy meetings are easily avoidable by simply having a casual chat with a colleague over a cup of coffee. It also removes some of the intimidation often associated with setting up formal meetings and makes for a more relaxed and open environment to discuss issues face-to-face – albeit over a warm brew.
  • Client meetings also form part of the daily routine. A quick check-in with our clients and stakeholders is a great way to build relationships (in person where possible, as I do believe that there is nothing more personal than a face-to-face engagement).
  • Then I’m involved in Technical Prep sessions with our development teams to understand if there are any areas which may require my team’s involvement (having a view across the landscape is always beneficial in aiming for resiliency).
  • I also aim to visit the BCI’s website at least once a day to read any articles or blogs pertaining to industry trends, risks, cyber security threats, etc.

Which challenges might you face during the day and which tools do you use to overcome them?

One of the major challenges that teams face is the 'bombardment' of meetings in our calendars. Utilising a good project management tool and the implementation of daily stand-ups has really changed and improved the way that the team plans and executes the day. Proper planning, by virtue of short and concise stand-ups have really reduced ‘diary clutter’ and paves the way for a more productive working day.

How do you increase awareness of BC/resilience within your organization?

  • Awareness and training sessions established
  • Incorporating BIAs and Risk Assessments as part of all Project Methodology
  • Table-top testing with various “trending” scenarios – we try aiming at one every quarter
  • Promoting cloud migration where feasible.

What would you encourage fellow practitioners to add to their practice?

If I could summarise, I would say “never underestimate your power of influence”. As a BCM professional, never underestimate how valued your input and guidance is, particularly to senior stakeholders in an organization. Never be afraid to push the BCM and resilience narrative at senior management level (particularly during management reviews), as the leadership teams are ultimat ely the custodians of the BCM Policy of an organization and can determine the success or decline of a BCMS.

How are you pushing for positive change in the BC/resilience sector outside of your organization?

By being a part of the BCI Southern Africa Chapter and engagement with other colleagues across the globe.

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About the author
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Prasheem Maharaj

Senior Manager GRC and BCM

I am an ambitious, hard working Business Continuity Professional, Certified CBCI with the Business Continuity Institute (BCI).

I am the Business Continuity Manager @ABInBEV Africa Zone, managing our ISO 22301:2019 certified Business Continuity Management System for our Business Service and Operations Centre in Sandton, Johannesburg, South Africa.

I have 6 years of Business Continuity Management Experience, along with 12 years plus experience in IT Service Management and Customer Service Management.

My work ethic is centered around my core values of Integrity, honestly and customer centricity