Sir. David Ochieng’
Founder: David Ochieng’ foundation
Interview of Sir. David Ochieng’
What was your first job?
I was a manager at Legendary Friends Corporation.
Who has had the biggest impact on your career and why?
Many people have had an impact on my career. My late mother had an enormous impact on me when I was growing up. Microsoft founder Bill Gates has influenced me in philanthropy and I have admired the humility of former South African president Nelson Mandela on a personal level. On a managerial level I admire the leadership at General Electric and Apple.
What parts of your job keep you awake at night?
The main concern for me is sustaining [the] organization’s culture that has held the foundation together and made it a high performance philanthropic entity and a great place to work in.
What are the top reasons why you have been successful in business?
I think I really cherish honesty, integrity, and a down-to-earth approach towards life which allows me to connect with most people.
What are the best things about your country, Kenya?
That must be our optimism.
And the worst?
The negative ethnicity.
Your future career plans?
Philanthropy, I will move away from the business to giving.
How do you relax?
By spending time with my family, being on a treadmill early in the morning really energizes me.
What is your message to Africa’s young aspiring business people and entrepreneurs?
We are seeing an opportunity for Africa’s youth to be involved in innovative ventures that Africa can leverage to transform itself, particularly in agriculture. We need to look at ways to unlock the youth demographic dividend. Job creation is essential for the youthful population to be meaningfully engaged and positively contribute to the development of the continent.
How can Africa realize its full potential?
We need to implement strategies and resolutions made in forums like the World Economic Forum on Africa. This should help us move to the market and solve some of the social constraints that have held Africa back for a long time.
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