Started from the bottom, now we here

Kabelo Adamson

Orange Botswana’s red hot success

The lyrics to Canadian rapper Drake’s 2014 hit ‘Started from the bottom now we’re here’ perfectly sum up Gobe Mbayi’s career.

17 years ago, Mbayi was earning P600 a month for his full-time job as a Help Desk Technician.

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Today, he is the Chief Technical and Information Officer at Orange Botswana, a position he has held since 2016.

The hard-working family man shares his inspirational story with Voice Money’s KABELO ADAMSON.

As Chief Technical and Information Officer, what does your job actually involve?

My main role is ensuring that Orange Botswana provides the best customer experience on ICT services.

The role also entails bringing to the market, innovative products and services in the digital era.

Services such as?

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I can share with you one of the big projects Orange Botswana undertook last year.

I was heading a nationwide Infrastructure Upgrade Project, aimed at bringing a strong, better and faster network connection to Batswana.

This project was a testament to Orange Botswana’s commitment towards improving overall network experience for all Batswana.

You’ve been in your current position for five years now – how would you describe the journey so far?

It has been a fulfilling journey. Working for a corporation that actively plays an important role in the ICT sector, and being able to positively impact the life of every Motswana with technology is something I find fulfilling, as a professional and as a human being.

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I’ll admit, there is something very gratifying about doing your job to the best of your abilities.

But trust me, it is even better when you know you are helping people at home access a service they need.

And your professional journey as a whole?

My career started from very humble beginnings. I was a Help Desk Technician, working six days a week and earning a meager P600 in 2004.

Over the years, I have had to navigate through different positions and challenges, and it has culminated to my current position at one of the biggest Mobile Network Operators in the country.

Some of the best lessons came from moving through different organisations and being able to leave my mark and play a positive role in the professional development of fellow colleagues, which really made it worthwhile and will remain one of the highlights of my career.

What would you say is your proudest moment of your career?

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I would have to say working in France for eight months.

Working outside the country and being able to share the experience I gained abroad with people locally was a great experience.

I was based in Paris and worked for Orange Group, managing regional strategy for Core Network system.

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So what challenges did you encounter along the way?

Being challenged in life is inevitable; it’s how you rise to overcome the obstacles that matters.

As you can imagine, at the start of every career you want a good paying job instantly.

I had to work my way up the corporate ladder, gaining experience and earning my keep as I go.

The hard work and patience ultimately paid off, and the most important lesson has been to take those challenges as a learning curve and keep evolving into a better version of you.

Away from work, what keeps you busy?

My family keeps me busy. I also enjoy mountain-biking and running.

These are some of the activities that keep me busy away from work.

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