Persistence conquers all

Living proof that temporary setbacks are ingredients for a great success story
Desiree Gases
Mengela Kunamwene matriculated in 2005. He initially didn’t acquire enough points for tertiary education, but he then enrolled at the Namibian College of Open Learning (Namcol). He also got a job to financially sustain himself.
"My working career started at the Institute for Open Learning (IOL) as an assistant printer," he said.
Four years later, he landed an IT technician job at MobiPay, where he worked hard and dedicated time to learning to acquire more knowledge and skills. Six years later, he was promoted to operations manager.
As an operations manager, he is the person who oversees everything that happens at MobiPay.
"I have to constantly offer good leadership and encouragement and push people to do their best for efficiency. So I have to take into account people's knowledge, the skills they possess, as well as their mental health to be able to do what is expected of them to the best of their ability," he said.
Work flow
"On a typical day before my first cup of coffee, I like to go through emails that I may have missed overnight while still in bed. Following that, I check my calendar to see what is scheduled for the day and prepare for all engagements accordingly. This allows me to ensure that all scheduled calls and meetings are top priorities in my mind, and it also allows me to make time for the office team as soon as I arrive at work".
When it comes to challenges and accomplishments, Kunamwene had a tough time maintaining a healthy balance between work, school and social activities, but over the years he taught himself how to juggle them. His greatest accomplishment during his 12 years at Mobipay was being part of a team that successfully migrated all of their systems to the cloud.
Careers asked Kunamwene what advice he would give to the youth, and he said: "Make it a habit to set realistic annual goals and to work hard to achieve them. It makes no difference how small or large it is. It could be as simple as obtaining your identification documents or as complex as launching your own business. This is the only way to give your life meaning and enjoy getting out of bed every morning. P.S. Don't forget to give yourself a pat on the back or reward yourself with your favourite cappuccino with each accomplishment."