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Angela James


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Philanthropist (Bronze)
Tomorrow's Leader Nominee 2013
Tomorrow's Leader Nominee 2014
Tomorrow's Leader Nominee 2015

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Angela James

CEO Align-Ed and Founder of SA Learns

Currently resides in: Gauteng, South Africa

Born in Johannesburg South Africa

Serial Entrepreneur since April 2004. Spent the 20 years prior in adult learning within the Banking and Hospitality sectors.

Passionate about Africa, people, organisation transformation, alignment of people to the business core and the Experience Economy. My love of storytelling, archetype, metaphor and transformative learning facilitates change within the African context for organisations and people

Fascinated with new ways of doing business within the 21st Century and have developed a number of alternative business models that allow us to take care of the people and therefore the planet in a prosperous and sustainable manner.

I have extensive experience in learning and adult education, performance consulting, and development of integrated and aligned people development solutions that cut across business functions. My work looks to implementing solutions that address hidden costs that are associated with misalignment of strategy and business cultures. This work impacts on leadership, culture, communication, customer service, employee engagement, organisation authenticity and addresses the people aspects of sustainable development.

I am insightful, visionary, and have deep passion for, indigenous cultures and the human condition. I am inspired by awakening potential in others. My love of learning and the difference that I have seen it make in the lives of others has inspired me to launch SA Learns, a social cause marketing campaign aimed at building a learning nation.

Web presence

Business Address

9A St Patrick Rd, Edenvale, South Africa, 1611

Professional Portfolios

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World Book Day

in World Book Day

SA Learns

in SA Learns

Professional details

Current Position(s)

Foudner, CEO and Chief Alchemist | Align-Ed Holdings™
2013 - present

Consulting and Project Management

Alignment With Purpose

We support your business in aligning your Strategy, Brand, Culture and People on purpose to deliver high performance business results. This Alignment is facilitated through the development, implementation and monitoring of innovative and transformative education, learning, communication and media solutions.

We are expert in

Aligning Strategy
Transformative Education
Collective Leadership
Experience Economy and Storytelling
Continuous Contribution

Our processes, products and services have supported our clients in:
• Defining their strategic thinking and points of difference,
• Bridging external brand messaging with internal execution of your business purpose.
• Developing role based cultures that deliver consistent service;
• Educating people, building learning capacity and facilitating internal communication.

That contributes to:
• Excited and passionate people
• Achieving market growth from engaged and delighted clients and
• Improved financial performance

Align-ED processes are currently delivered via face-to-face learning events. We are expanding our offering into dynamic Internet and mobile-based learning and communications products.

We blessed with a dynamic team of visionary and exciting people that are specialists in the areas of sustainable development; transformation of women and youth; mentoring and knowledge management and personal and organisational wellness.

Business Story Teller and Alchemist | Service Warriors Network
2010 - present

We facilitate the development of Y-Our Unique Business Story and building and aligning the internal culture to reflect that story and the external marketing messaging. In so doing we provide processes and services that connect to both customer acquisition and retention strategies. We assist in the alignment of Y-Our promise and delivery with Y-Our business strategy, Y-Our Story and Customer Experiences consistently and authentically, thus ensuring greater value for your customers, improved efficiencies and cost savings.

Service Warriors engages in transformation management processes aimed at stimulating a passion for the cause and quest for service excellence of key strategic initiatives at all levels within the business. It includes creating the means to “Sustain Y-Our Authentic Customer Experience”, entrenching this as a vibrant part of your business culture.

Our end to end processes in the establishment of a the telling of Y-Our business story, cut across a number of different traditional functional areas and establish an integrated, holistic blueprint that substantially improves people and organizational performance in the engagement and connection with Y-Our customers.

Owner | 7 Generations Network CC
2004 - present

7 Generations focuses on integrating the development, implementation and alignment of Stategy, organisational culture, branding, internal communications, and learning. By providing access for people to context and information and in facilitating processes that tap into individual potential we create the environment for sustainable, measureable performance improvement of both individuals and organisations.

Previous Position(s)

Training Manager | InterContinental Hotels Training Manager | Southern Sun Hotels
Johannesburg, South Africa | 2000 - March 2004

Travel, Tourism and Hospitality

All training and development related strategy and matters for the InterContinental hotel brand. Design development and training of trainers for UN Conference on Racism and Xenophobia and the World Summit on Sustainable Development; Rebranding of InterContinental Hotels from the IHC Group worldwide.

Training Manager | Head Office Training | Southern Sun Hotels
Johannesburg, South Africa | 1997 - 2000

Travel, Tourism and Hospitality

Responsible for Middle Management Development for the Group; implementation of development programmes including Skills Programmes (precursor to Learnerships) across the Garden Court brand; design and development of initiatives such as the implementation of the online revenue system; hotel openings - Sandton Convention Centre; IHC Kigale in Rwanda, Montecasino; rebranding of Garden Court hotels around the country

Training Manager | Training and Development - Sandton Sun and Towers | Southern Sun Hotels
Johannesburg, South Africa | 1995 - 1997

Travel, Tourism and Hospitality

Development of learning and training strategy for the two hotels; management of the training team; needs analysis; management of the implementation of the training strategy; reporting to the executive team; design, development and implementation of learning, culture and brand initiatives; deployment of Head Office initiatives.

Training Manager | Training and Development - Beverly Hills Hotel | Southern Sun Hotel Group
Durban, South Africa | 1993 - 1995

Travel, Tourism and Hospitality

Training Needs Analysis for the hotel; running of training courses based on Head Office initiatives; skills development in conjunction with service providers; talent and middle management development; intercontinental rebranding; training administration

Department Manager | Fixed Deposit Maturities | ABSA
Durban, South Africa | August 1987 - November 1989

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Responsible for all Fixed Deposit Maturities for the Kwa Zulu Natal Region with a team of 16 staff and all related leadership and work related processes

Training Officer | Training | ABSA
Johannesburg and Durban, South Africa | 1982 - 1991

Accounting, Banking and Finance

From regional training of tellers, enquiry clerks, supervisors to Head Office trainer - to middle management and accelerated learning programmes

Educational history


Edenvale High School, Edenvale, South Africa (1977)



Johannesburg, South Africa | October 2013 - August 2014

Goldman Sachs 10000 Women Entrepreneurs Programme - Entrepreneurship


Pretoria, South Africa | February 1987 - November 1988

BA Hons Psychology - Psychology

University of Witwatersrand

Johannesburg, South Africa | February 1978 - November 1982

BA Psychology - Counselling


Other Achievements

Developer In their Footsteps | 2009

A series of learning experiences that are aimed at the role of Elders - Stewardship, Sponsorship, Mentorship, Change Leadership

Developer Into Me I See | 2010

Development, design and implementation of learning experiences for women

Developer of Choices | 2014

Developer and author of Choices Board Game and the Choices learning experience

Founder of SA Learns | 2015

SA Learns is a social cause marketing campaign that has been developed to build a culture of learning in South Africa as the means to social development and economic growth.

Founder of Align-Ed Holdings | 2014

Align-Ed established in Sept 2014 is the result of 12 years of research, development and implementation of transformative learning and organisation development solutions developed in South Africa for Africa

Single Mom | 1994

Single handedly raised two wonderful children



WE 300

Founding Committee Member, November 2014 - August 2015

Goldman Sachs GIBS 10000 Women Alumni Committee founding member. Currently a member of the Alumni



Service Taker and Leader, 2007 - 2016

Leader in our church community

SA Learns

Founder and CEO

SA Learns is a social enterprise that is designed in part to take learning to communities. We are actively involved in working with service organisations such as Rotary International as a means to activating community hubs as a means to promote learning.

Other Activities



In the process of writing a series of books that link to personal development, transformation and storytelling for adults and children alike.


Robert Savage

"Angela has a big heart and an open mind. A rare combination of intelligence with an ability to apply knowledge to help others. Under her leadership the Align-Ed team and Choices is going places. In a relatively short space of time I see this team serving large corporations and the people of South Africa.

CEO Sound Connections
" - 2015

Laurence McGrath

"“The results of working through the program were outstanding! Angela is knowledgeable regarding our industry, and is always neutral, looking for the best solutions to help move the group forward. I would not hesitate to recommend this company, and look forward to working with Angela in the future.”

Hotel General Manager Valley Lodge
" - 2007

Deon Viljoen

"Angela is one of those rare all in one professionals. A coach, mentor, strategist, training, developer and corporate culture influencer.

I'd recommend Angela's services without reservation

Deon is Operations Director Resort Hotels -Tsogo Sun Hotels
" - 2015

Lisa Gering

"The thread that link all people, all events and all experiences are the stories that flow through them. Align-Ed, led by Angela James, is writing the book of life with all the stories that impact and influence people lives and Businesses. No other Enterprise can tell your story so the world can experience and engage with you to take your business to the next level.

Real Success Network

" - 2013

Daryl Garner-Savory

"“The tools Align-Ed has given me has helped me as General Manager at Elemod Electronics. I want to thank Align-Ed personally for your insight and tools. Your impression on me has made me a far better person both personally and professionally!”

DARYL GARNER-SAVORY, General Manager, Elemod Electronics
" - 2012

Richard Adamson

"“The Align-Ed commitment, ethic and service standards, have, during our association been laudable, and we have no doubts that working with them into future will be fruitful and rewarding. We would recommend them without hesitation for projects of a similar nature to the one undertaken ourselves.”

" - 2015

Clinton White

"“Thank you Align-Ed, from the entire family at Toll, for you and your team’s commitment and dedication in making the training program launch a massive success with all our Toll staff. Angela and her team do an excellent job and the value they add is immeasurable! We would not hesitate to be an “Apostle” of Align-Ed and spread the word of the great service they offer in terms of training and skills development”

Executive Barloworld Logistics, ex Toll Global Forwarding
" - 2014

Pumeza Bam

"I was absolutely pleased with the outputs for the process, as they formed a foundation for solid working relationships, and true understanding of the role of the HR Administrators in the bigger HR Strategy, as being one of service and to take personal responsibility for their actions. I would highly recommend the work of Mrs Angela James & Align-Ed.”

HR Director EOH
" - 2013

Janet Sedgwick

"Angela has a wealth of experience from which she operates, she aligns herself with integrity at all times. Her company Align-Ed is making huge in-roads into the Corporate Arena with ground-breaking development of Learning Strategies, Change Management, Customer Experience and Service: all aligned and integrated into/with your company's requirements, initially and on an ongoing basis" - 2012

Butch Mollett

"I had the privilage of utilising Angela as a consultant and staff trainer during 2005. Her experience and expertise in a variety service aspects for the Hospitality Industry is excellent . She brings a refreshing change to employee training , the take home value of which remains with one forever. An excellent trainer and personality with a BIG PLUS.....I would recommend Angela's services to any progressive Hospitality Company." - 2005

Tony Rubin

"Angela has been instrumental in supporting the growth and development of our Management and Staff into more professional people who have lifted our business Maropeng, over the past 4 Years.

She has been involved in the formation of our Business Strategy, Supervisor Development, as well as the Mission, Vision and Values of our Company.
" - 2012

John Usher

"A group is defined as a collection of people united by a common cause. I worked with a group of people at Safarmex, a Pharmaceutical company. This wonderful group of people, that are passionate about healthcare in Mpumalanga, manage the Governments Pharmaceutical Depot in the province. The level of commitment and dedication amongst the employees is unrivalled considering the unstable nature of the environment in which they work. A month to month contract has not lessened any of their efforts in providing a service of quality.
I was introduced to Angela James, CEO of Align-ED, through my Project Leader. Angela proposed that the leaders of the organisation tell their story of where the company had come from, and encourage the management group to tell a story of where they felt the organisation was going. Involved in training for 25 years, I am familiar with the culture of storytelling amongst many culture groups of the world. Values, beliefs, culture and tradition are carried through the stories to the next generation. This method is not in a rigid structure enforcing teachings, but a dynamic model that encourages engagement, interpretation and continuity. Personally I was keen to explore the possibilities, but I failed to realise the power of storytelling in the corporate world.
The group of managers arrived on course after a difficult week, reluctant and frustrated. Angela's mettle would be tested I thought to myself. Her preparation leading up to the course was intense and thorough. Angela's approach was relaxed, welcoming and she had aligned herself to the values and current mindset of the individuals sitting in front of her. With authenticity, intelligence and adaptability, Angela guided and prompted they groups learning, like a beautifully timed dance. The walls of ego, resistance and defiance amongst the group melted away.
A team is defined as a group of people united by a common cause working together to achieve a specific result. Angela's exchange with the group of managers from Safarmex took from them the things that limited their potential, replacing it with information and tools to unite a team. Each person on the course stepped into the role of personal leadership. Each person clicked into the role at their own time, in their own way. By the end of the course the group transformed into a team that is informed, focused and equipped to successfully move the company into the future. What a transformation!
Personally, I found and connected to my authentic self, allowing me to easily walk in my personal purpose. I have recognised and committed to embracing the greatness within me. Through the course I found my role as an individual and understood how that role contributes to the team dynamics. I witnessed the transformation in my team members and I am proud to be a contributing part. I am most proud of clicking into a owning the space as a leader myself.
The power of Align-ED and Angela James' contribution to my life didn't stop with the course conclusion. It continues every day with the simple and "oh-so-effective" tools and principles she equipped me with for the future. The course Angela shared with us is one of the exceptional few that are void of co-dependence, promoting personal engagement and inter-dependence. This course was clever, sensitive and authentic - A MUST for any group brought together by a common cause that want to work towards a common solution! I encourage you, take the step to transform your group to a team! Be prepared to grow from a manager to a leader! I can recommend this course to you for two reasons; firstly it will engage your team in owning the vision. Secondly; you will be empowered as an individual. It was a 10 star course in a 5 star world! Thanks Angela.
John Usher
Training Manager
" - 2015

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