Lesotho Jobs and Investment Summit

An Open Day event in Maseru, 48-piece 9ft tall Gallery Walk Panels, a 204-page Roadmap, and a Strategic Communications Plan for the Government of Lesotho – coordinated by 5 people in 8 weeks!

The government of Lesotho was about to roll out their National Strategic Development Plan II – a holistic plan to steer their economy from a consumer-based to a producer-based economy. To do this, they engaged the help of our sister company, PEMANDU Associates to facilitate a series of Economic ‘Labs’ over 2 months to identify key projects as well as private investments that would unlock M19.9 billion in private investments and create over 30,000 new jobs by 2022/2023.

COMMUNICATE was brought in to help them story-tell the results of the Labs to the Basotho public at large. We began by distilling the 500-page Lab Reports into an engaging and visually appealing series of infographics to be displayed across 48 panels at their Open Day event, called the Lesotho Jobs and Investment Summit, which we planned and managed.

Just because it’s for the government doesn’t mean it has to be boring.

A cohesive design language was developed and applied across the board from the event day panels which mirrored an immersive art exhibition, to the visually appealing Roadmap (a boon for the public and other stakeholders to read up on all the detailed actions plans).

Considering one of the focus areas was to revamp the nation’s Tourism and Creative Industries Sector, it was fitting that there was a design-centric twist in how we presented their key collaterals. We did this by a minimalist geometric approach to our design. For the Roadmap, the geometric style was used to depict elements unique to Lesotho – this included the national flower of Lesotho, the Spiral Aloe which was used as a hero visual for the book’s cover.

And in keeping with the spirit of celebrating the nation, we introduced a colour palette based on their national colours of green and blue.

Next came organising the event itself.

With the design and content of the panels developed, it was time to make the event happen. What’s an Open Day event? It’s a chance for the government to be transparent with the public on their plans as well as timelines for completion.

Team COMMUNICATE played an advisory role on the event management front, together with the assistance of a Johannesburg-based events company as its local arms and legs. Our goal is to ensure that the overall flow, look and feel of the event will enable the government to achieve its objectives – that is to educate the public on the Lab initiatives and to gather their feedback. No details were spared in this process, from coordinating with various Ministries, government departments and local vendors, overseeing the construction process, to rolling up our sleeves for the final preparations and throughout the event.

Now, how do we generate a buzz about the event?

Effective promotion is a prerequisite to create excitement and awareness about the event. To do this, the COMMUNICATE team worked closely with the government to hatch a comprehensive communications plan involving a network of state-owned and private media platforms. The success of this plan depends on effective messaging – thus, the COMMUNICATE team conceptualised cohesive content and design for the strategic communications materials for the event. These content were featured across TV, radio and print media in the lead up to the event, led by the Ministers and key figures driving the Lab initiatives across sectors.

The Result?

Over 500 guests attended the Open Day, comprising dignitaries from the public sector, key players in the private sector, investors, related organisations, and the general public. Surveys at the event revealed positive feedback on the government’s initiatives, indicating the event’s success in meeting its objectives. And with a strong local media turnout, the event was covered across digital, radio and print – thus continuing its reach to inform the public about the government’s development initiatives in the coming years.