By Innocent Ngare
“And l have said this before. Robert William Collymore led the world’s top-notch corporates including Safaricom PLC where he earned a monthly salary of Kshs. 16 million (l didn’t add his hefty benefits package running into millions ) without a University degree.
Nothing is so rewarding like walking and opening pages within the prestigious walls of a University. But it is not everything.
The world’s most successful companies have agreed in their Human Resource Departments that it is unnecessary to insist on a University degree to judge people’s abilities. How many people you know of walk with a litany of degrees but cannot perform even the tasks they spent years toiling for?
Top companies now hire those employees who have taken the time to expand their talent options, their skills, not those who spent years piling up papers. Companies like Google, Apple, IBM, Hilton, Nordstrom, Starbucks, Safaricom, Bank of America and even the US Embassy here in Kenya will invite you to a lucrative six or seven figure salary with only an ‘O’ Level certificate if you can demonstrate that you have the skills to perform your work. It is these small entities that give you lots of headaches for meagre salaries.
Do not bombard people with tonnes of papers, bombard people with the things you can do. That’s how Bob ended up at Safaricom. A champion of talent and innovation. That’s how Paul Muite became one of the best lawyers in our country without knowing how a University looks like. That’s how Winston Churchill became the best Premier Britain has ever known with no known or very little stint in class. That’s how Thomas Joseph Mboya became our Economic Planning Minister and one of the finest Kenyans while holding only a certificate in sanitation.
Go to University if you can. It is still one of the best places to take and share knowledge, but do not go for the sake of it. It is not everything.
Build your skills. Because “sometimes you have to move horizontally so as to move vertically.”
Because in our modern world, “the career ladder is dead.”
And that’s the reason Bob could sit down so comfortably while millions stood on his shoulders.
Rest in peace Bob.”