Why I believe in Andela’s Mission

Disclaimer: Thoughts expressed here are mine alone and not those of my employer.

After two years of working with Andela, it dawned on me to reflect briefly on what Andela is, what Andela means to me and how it’s shaping the history of Africa and perception of the world.

The Journey

Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home — Matsuo basho.

I heard about Andela in the mist of frustration because I wasn’t given the opportunity to express my passion in the education system. I obtained first class honors in Computer Science and by default, I should have been retained to contribute to the system. And even though I clearly stated my intentions, I was denied this position due to our society’s fundamental ills.

Still not pleased by the state of things, I heard about Andela and was caught without reserve for the mission. To be precise, I scaled the interview and rigorous bootcamp on account of my understanding of the mission and the excitement it brought. Now, it was time for the simulations in preparation to join one of the partner companies. Feedback, openness, community factor, and redefining my learning pulled me through.

The mission

Outstanding people have one thing in common: An absolute sense of mission — Zig Ziglar

Andela is on a mission to mobilize and develop 100, 000 world-class Software Engineers across Africa in the next 10 years. It’s an ambitious mission and Andela has put in place different initiatives to drive this home: teencodeafrica, Android Learning Community in partnership with Udacity, etc.

Andela has proven that it’s not how long a movement has existed that makes it strong but defining the right mission, getting the right people and trusting them to do the right thing.

Andela’s successes and mission is a rallying point for tech companies seeking to gain ground in Africa currently both as startup or tapping from the continent’s abundant talent. Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Google Ventures, Spark Capital, etc couldn’t afford to put their investment here if this was a fluke. For full detail of what Andela is, check This Is Andela.

Andela’s belief in Africa and it’s commitment to human capital development is incredible. In the history books, Andela will not be remembered just as a company but more as a vehicle that brought technology and talent revolution across Africa. Andela is a big movement and not about any one individual. This movement will enable the continent export technology to augment the inadequate supply of tech talent and products around the world.

Suddenly, the almost non-existent tech meetups and the tech community are blossoming and the whole world is noticing that Africa is the next stop for great tech talent. The standout traits of Africans include grit, resilience, brilliance, energy, and optimism.

The successes

Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome — Arthur Ashe.

Andela’s successes within this short period is just mouth-watering. I’m not sure I can recount all. Employees driving the successes are on the same page and you can always expect more.

My personal successes are immeasurable as most of them are not evident but in all, I’ve repositioned myself to add value to the society(setting out a course of action). I have enjoyed a supportive environment, meritorious promotions, incredible community, passionate and optimistic team members, and amazing partners I work with outside the shores of the country.

Yeah, and now I have the whole world through the Internet as my classroom. Whoop!

The challenges

I’m never sure what’s coming next, but I’m an open minded person and I welcome any challenge — Sarah Polley.

Sourcing talent is one of the hardest challenge for any serious minded company or movement.

Ensuring equity, equal opportunity, and high retention rate is another big challenge.

Ensuring that identified talents are provided with what it takes to realize their potential while being happy requires a solid culture in place.

Putting this in perspective, Andela seems to be doing a fairly great job. Challenges seems to be the natural path to glory. Figuring out how to navigate through those challenges fans up my passion.

I can sum it up personally by saying:

My biggest challenge is when there’s no challenge to help me up skill.”

Every day for me is finding the point of confluence between what I want to do, how to do them and how to communicate my intent properly. I wake up everyday with excitement for a new challenge, my path to glory.

The next move

To help yourself, you must be yourself. Be the best that you can be. When you make a mistake, learn from it, pick yourself up and move on. — Dave Pelzer.

Andela is always on the search for new opportunities and new grounds to break in pursuance of the mission. The drive to confront the status quo is evident in the successes recorded within this short period and always obvious with the way employees tackle problems daily.

It’s a journey of excellence. It’s not focused on competition. Its bearing is in finding out the problems and not just analysing and proposing unrealistic solutions, but taking ownership of the process to make it happen. It’s a dream into the land of limitless boundaries and allowing excellence to rule the process.

It’s my second anniversary in Andela!!!

Let me hear your thoughts and questions if any in the comment section. 👍

Thank you S.O.T.I.