Hello World, I had the coolest boss!

Hannah Olukoye
Oct 26, 2016 · 6 min read

This was going to be my second job as developer. In my first job I mostly did developing on websites, and so this new opportunity was going to give me the chance to be a “major” developer in a bigger company. How cool?

Who would have thought that I would actually get hired as a software developer with no degree in computer science?

So I joined this small team of deployment engineers, which was headed by a team lead -- Philip Moturi Moturi , and watched it slowly grow into a team of committed and self motivated group of software engineers. It was my first time understanding what exactly an implementations engineer does and I really enjoyed every week of learning I experienced.

Our team lead, Philip Moturi would take time to take us through the products we would be deploying in depth and was he was so patient with the likes of us who had never worked as developers before.

He never seemed to be biased to the strongest members in the team, and he would let everyone have a chance in leading the team on a weekly basis. This way no one was left behind in tasks that were being handled by the other team members.

Of course not everyone was at the same level, but at the same time, no one in our team felt like they were the weak link. I liked the feeling that we had each others back if it ever came to handling a specific task.

We shared cheat sheet notes, had a whats app group to catch up during the week in case someone wasn’t in the office that week. We celebrated each other’s birthdays. My highlight was when we each got Christmas gifts for one another at the end of the year in 2015.

Our different roles in the team somehow brought us together, we worked well as a unit.

The one thing that really stood out for me was the fact that as a leader he wasn’t afraid to be told the truth even if it wasn’t something nice. Yes, he would feel bad about it but he would take time, re think his decision and then give us feedback or stick to his decision after explaining it to us over and over.

This one time we were so mad at him for not letting us work remotely as a team, his reason was that we will loose our connection as a team because it was too early for us to be far away from each other yet we were just beginning to learn how to work as a unit. So after a few weeks, he introduced #FAF — Friday Afternoon Fun: this was the one hour we would get from office time and just do some outdoor/indoor games as a team. The memories that will remain from those FAF days are priceless.

PS: He would let us invite other teams in the office to join us.

I was sure I wasn’t the only one who felt he was such a great team lead.

So I went ahead, asked my team-mates to say something say about him.

“Excellent teacher, willing to share knowledge anywhere, anytime.”

-Emily Wakesho

“For one to become a great leader, one has to first become a great person. Philip Moturi Moturi is both. He brought so much out of me and for that I am grateful. I can attribute my personal and career growth to him. Although not entirely but significantly. Still a good friend and may I be able to write more of the good things in future. You are an inspiration.”

-Peter Muchina

“For me Turi was the true definition of a leader, as my first boss/supervisor he set the bar unbelievably high. He taught and guided without smothering or demeaning. He let you make mistakes and turned them into teachable moments. Most of all he had a way of boosting, instilling even, self confidence just from the amount of faith he had in our ability to perform as a team.”

-Lulu Karega

“I met Philip at a school organised dinner back in 2014 and let’s just say that was the beginning of many years of friendship. He took me in as an intern in a department that he was heading at Mobile Decisioning (MoDe), Deployments. Later on, after intense hand-holding from him, he recommended me for a job as a Deployments Engineer at MoDe. He has an eye for detail, mentoring, supportive, diligent, self-driven and funny. One of the very few people who are very excited for other people’s success as though it were their own. Much of the experience I have as a software engineer is attributed majorly to his mentorship and support. God bless you Philip.”

-Ian Brayoni

“I have known Turi both as a friend and as a colleague at work.I had the chance to work with Turi for about 4 and half years. In this period I saw Turi grow from his role as a Junior Software Engineer to our System Deployments Manager. Turi is a friendly person with an interesting sense of humour. He is a fun loving person and ensures to spread the same even under the teams that he works with. He introduced an outdoor office session that was dubbed Friday Afternoon Fun, which later became an office tradition not just within our department but across the organization. He is also the type of leader who pays attention details and is very articulate in his communication. This was one key trait that I learnt from him as a leader. Turi also has a key eye for analytics and digging out issues and breaking them into smaller workable solutions that would eventually help in driving efficiency in our mode of operations as a team. Last but not least, Turi is a also a passionate sports person, I have seen him play and get involved in various kinds of sports, running, swimming, basketball, rugby to mention but a few. This instilled him the need to always be the best and emerge a winner in whatever one does. I wish him the very best in future and I am sure that the world ahead of him lies with a lot of infinite opportunities.”

-June Seif

“My personal experience with Turi as a team leaders was one of the best since I started my career. He was a listener and never quick to respond for just the sake. He was always ready to listen and hold your hand through a challenge.He was not a micromanager and let you do a task in an agreed timeline, until you don’t deliver the same, he would approach you and assist you. Turi, was a leader who did not only push for career growth but he also wanted his team to grow socially, he set up challenges (FAF) that allowed his team to create a bond. This is unseen and never heard of from many team leads across. Finally, Turi did not put himself on a pedestal, he acted like a team player this allowed his team to approach him at at anytime without fear or intimidation.”

-James Kimani

“Turific, that’s what I call him. In his tenure as a HOD he nurtured a team into greatness. Young minds looked up to this terrific man as he trail blazed a path for his team to follow and emulate. Always smiling always jovial even in the face of diverse problematic issues that used to pop up from nowhere. I want to wish him nothing but big blessings in his future for him and his family. Keep paving that road.”

-Teddy Mwangi

“The first time I met Turi was on a rugby pitch. We played together for some years and the highlight was when he gave me the last pass to score against rhinos in super series and we won the game. As a person,he is sharp,smart,dedicated,humble and organized in his work, life and achievements. To some extent he is a perfectionist, don’t know if its a good or a bad thing hahaha….!. A very good listener, advisor and great leader. There’s so much about him that words cannot explain. A bright future is always there for the wise and righteous for they are blessed. Turi keep at it.”

-Kepher Peter

Hannah Olukoye

Written by

Mobile Developer — Android :: Proud wife :: Sometimes a drummer