MISA is no ordinary trade union that only protects the interests of workers, but empowers its members with access to free education aimed at developing critical thinking, knowledge and improving self-confidence.
The Union puts meaning to the words of Nelson Mandela: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
This week 13 MISA members in Pretoria will receive free training in effective communication skills.
In March, MISA paid for another 19 members in Cape Town to receive first-aid training.
Bernadine Harmse (42), the MISA Women’s Forum Representative for Northern Highveld, who has been a member of the Union for the past seven years, says the free soft skills training the Union provides, motivated her to join.
“I never thought that I would belong to a trade union. It was just not my cup of tea. I do not believe that disputes are resolved when workers toyi-toyi in protest without pay. That was the just of my knowledge about trade unions until Ruth Alblas, then a MISA Recruitment and Liaison Officer, changed my perception.
“When I heard what MISA is doing, besides the norm of a trade union, by giving back to its members in a wide variety of benefits like no other, it just seemed unreal. “
Harmse is responsible for training at the dealership where she works in Pretoria and learning that MISA provides soft skills training to members, free of charge, made her change her mind.
“Training people, empowering them to achieve greater heights, is my passion. Today I am proud to be a MISA member and belonging to a trade union striving to not only upskill its members, but in the process uplifting the motor retail industry in general.”
Harmse decided on effective communication for this month because she senses that workers lacks empathy with each other, after two years of the global Covid-19 pandemic, and needs to reconnect.
“We have forgotten how to talk to each other, seeing who the person in front of us really is and adapting our approach to how he or she might feel more comfortable in our conversations. “
The delegates who will receive this training are all MISA members, working directly with the dealership’s clients.
“I believe we should all lead by example. If we get the basics right, we will inspire others to follow in our footsteps.”
Last year Harmse ensured that thirteen MISA members where trained in occupational health and safety.
“Thandeka Phiri, MISA’s National Training and Human Resources Manager, and her department is simply the best. They exceed in whatever are required from them. There is no challenge too big for them. They always walk the extra mile to accommodate the needs of MISA’s members. The training is customized to fit our specific challenging timeframes.”
For more information on MISA,’s Soft Skills Training e-mail Training@ms.org.za or call MISA’s Training Department directly on 011 476 3920.