Invest in your career

The other day I received an exciting message from National Social Security Fund (NSSF). NSSF had just recently declared interest and the message indicated how much interest had been credited to my account. The amount was fairly decent for our economy. I showed it to a close relation who exclaimed that I was a lucky guy.

Indeed I am a lucky guy, I told him, for I have heavily invested in my career. My career has not progressed because of random luck alone but through careful planning and execution. Of course, you can’t ignore luck in anyone’s life but luck surely comes to us all. I was indeed lucky to join Makerere on government sponsorship where I studied Civil Engineering. I was also lucky to study on scholarship throughout my high school at Busoga College Mwiri.

After campus, I was lucky to join Deloitte (U) Ltd on merit. Deloitte was the perfect place to start my career. The training and exposure was world-class. Deloitte paid for my professional accounting course (ACCA). I was mentored and guided by an excellent team at Deloitte. At Deloitte I learned that my career growth was my own responsibility and not that of my employer.
I left Deloitte after three years to join Umeme. My career quickly progressed from here. Because of the diversity of skills I took on all sorts of roles at Umeme. I also pursued an online MBA which prepared me for different leadership roles. I did roles ranging from risk, audit, operations, strategy, and project management.

I left Umeme after seven years to join the public sector. Currently, I lead the strategy team at one of the large institutions in the country and I am finalizing a professional finance course. Throughout my career, I have invested in self-education in both formal and informal courses. I have bought hundreds of books and courses in this period. This has enabled me to change careers from engineering, to audit, to risk, to operations, to project management, and finally to strategy.

I have also invested in myself outside formal work. To be able to run The Money Engineer project I had to read hundreds of books on personal development and finance. To be able to set up an aquaponics project I invested hours in learning. To become an entrepreneur I have invested several hours to learn about businesses and startups.

I have made many investments but I have come to realize that the best investment you can make is in yourself. So make sure you invest in your career. Don’t just go to work to get a salary. Rather go to work to develop yourself and acquire new skills. So indeed I am a lucky guy who holds four degrees with thousands of hours in learning.

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