What’s your Worth?

In the first job I ever got about 7 or so years ago, my boss was earning 10 times what I was earning, and somehow, we still had the same basic needs and desires. None the less, to date, it’s still one of my favourite jobs I’ve had!

What exactly is your worth? Your value?

Being Principal at a prestigious design school means that one of my duties is to employ people, and ensure they are the best fit for the job and team! When I first started, I found it difficult to hire – drawn towards the credentials but now, it’s a little different.

There’s a significant difference between your value and your worth! How much should I pay you is one of the questions I find myself asking people who apply for any job and get an interview!

Value is always added! The pizzazz or difference you add to the team! The magic! The wow factor! And if you have a higher value added, then your worth then is much higher! See the difference?

I’ve employed people who claimed they had a higher ‘worthiness’ to the team and yet the value added over a period of time to the team was the same or even negligible to say the least! It leaves many employers frustrated when they believed you’d be the difference maker!

What people don’t know is that you are either employable or not! And the ‘not’ is not a bad thing! From the very on set when I got my first job, I always had a side main hustle! Sometimes it brought more money than what I was being paid and that made my job more about experience and understanding. I remember once sharing with my spiritual mentor about the many businesses I was attempting on the side and they plain told me that they rather sit in an office from 8-5! That’s who they were and they were ok with that! Not everyone has an entrepreneurial mindset or attitude, and that is fine. We all make do with what we choose.

Part of the work – life experience is to build your worthiness by adding value! It could be in qualifications, experience, capabilities, specified knowledge to mention but a few and these ideally will build your worth, that bargaining chip.

My first job taught me a lot! It brought capitalism closer to home! I was never paid exactly at the end of the month and sometimes it didn’t matter whether I had my own personal issues! The MAN paid when and how he wanted to! The job will never solve all your problems. Simply put, more money, more problems!

Maybe our societal structure and system creates a system of failure? But what do I know! If you are quick to understand some of these subtleties then you can quickly move up or move on to better things.

Architecture schools across Europe, Asia and the Americas changed their systems because of minimum wage requirements! The course was too long and pay too little for those who did it! And so they changed from a 5 year Bachelors degree to a 3-1-2 Masters program! Unfortunately, it’s still the same in most East African institutes teaching Architecture…so, what will you do?

I’ve done quite a few jobs, starting from Client Service and Account Manager to now Principal at Artfield Institute of Design. For me, that’s a story I’d love to tell! If your employer truly cares about you, they could elucidate more on the intricacies of your job and your value/worth.

I once quit a job because my value and worth we’re not matched! And I was wise enough to see that. Have you ever seen your boss bag that big a** cheque while you struggle to get a taxi back home? While that dream car or house pass you by? Don’t confuse your desires to be successful as your worth!

I’ve written down and monitored my personal and business goals for the last 7 years and honestly, your dream starts on paper! I’ve started and closed a restaurant! I’ve done some agribusiness! Tried money lending! Sold perfumes at some point! There was a bar somewhere too! I’ve truly tried out a couple of things. I’ve written for a few magazines and newspapers!

Eventually it all comes down to passion! Passion should never be looked at as a bad thing. Passion honestly drives you! I am passionate about leading, teaching and writing, and building obviously! Once an architect, always an architect! The rest are extras! I currently run a small construction firm, teach and lead an institution – all things I am passionate about!

We all take different journeys but the road to success requires sacrifices.

What value are you adding to yourself, and what do you think you are worth?

Maybe your work should speak for itself? There’s different matrices to determine some of these things but I know for a fact that no job is truly ever fulfilling, well, because it’s a job!

Anyway, peace!

C. E. O

Guys, I am a CEO, well, have been for quite sometime, and the psychology of the work space is very very important.

I shared a couple of tweets last week about what I believe is a good leader. In retrospect, I asked myself what is the kind of leader I want to be, and what would the kind of leader be who led me? Guys, forgive the wish washy sentencing. Basically, this is the boss I’d like to be.

1. It’s is important as an employer to cultivate an environment of trust! With trust comes loyalty, and growth! Your team needs to be able to trust you so that they can efficiently work in an environment that nurtures them. Your team needs to know that you have their backs, in whatever they do. Trust builds loyalty. Trust allows for the team to grow because they KNOW. Trust means that they will see you through, in the thick and thin, the highs and the lows, the glory and the fall. Trust means that you don’t even have to be there for work to get done! It shall get done. Without trust, your brand, your company, can all go to the dogs because your employees don’t see the need as to why they should hold you!

2. Your team needs to know they are valuable, and also needs to know your values as an employer. You need to be on the same page. If I value what you bring to the table, then it’s easy for me to understand what you mean to the company and the process. If you know what I value, then it’s easy to figure out what to bring to the table. Communication becomes easier, work flow becomes easier, the process becomes easier. If we value different things, mehn oh mehn, we are going to have conflicts. I always like my Sundays free, for church, and family. If my employer wants me to work on a Sunday, then that is going to be a challenge. Sometimes it is in the things we value too. Ensure your team knows your values, and find out what their values are.

3. Being an employer means being a good leader. Get off that high horse and build a camaraderie with your work force. If you are unapproachable as a boss, then you are going to have issues, lots of issues. Part of building a solid team is knowing that anyone in the office can approach you and not get to feel intimidated when they do. You’d be surprised about what you’d find out. Again, it gets easier when communicating. 

4. Try and figure out your teams strength and weaknesses, and capitalize on those aspects. Build the team yo.

5. Always keep lines of communication. In good times and bad. Let them know what the process is, and what the commitment to the process is!

6. And as the team leader, it’s important to know the mechanics, and processes of everyone on the team. To know is to be wise.

7. If you are passionate about what you do, then it’s easier to pick a team with the same dream.

8. Be teachable! Always be open to the idea that you can learn something new. Always!

I will keep adding to this post until we get there! 

8 Years

8 Year Anniversary Achievement
Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!
You registered on WordPress.com 8 years ago!
Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!
It’s been a great 8 years and I dare say that my writing and the Thought Process has grown and improved. So here’s to many more.
Cheers!

December Musings

Is it Christmas already? The year has played hop scotch on me. It feels like I was just penning down my resolutions at the beginning of the year. Anyway, while most people gear up for Christmas, I gear up for the most exciting time of my work season. Like Christmas shopping, my clients seem to want to spend an extra dime on their spaces. It is design galore for me this time of the year. I find my selfemployed self going long nights and busy days. I am pretty much excited.

Well, here are my 12 musings thus far.

1. Uhm, the year has ended. Feel free to ask yourself what you have achieved, don’t worry, I will wait. 

2. Arrrgggghhhh. WORK! It does this to me sometimes.

3. If you are self employed, who exactly pays you a salary?

4. I am OLD!

5. I am broke.

6. Tomorrow will be a better day, I say the next day. 

7. Don’t put all your fruits in one basket.

8. Being self employed is hard.

9. I was once asked by a client if I pray for all my work…yes, I do. God over everything else.

10. There’s a thin line between desperate and broke. Sometimes you have to say no, but yes, but no, but…there’s so many buts.

11. November flew by me.

12. How many districts in Uganda have you been to? Places? Regions? Have you travelled this year? I’ve been to Bulago and visited the pineapple bay. I was recently in Fort Portal. Damn, we do have a beautiful country.

12 and a half. I am glad that I’ve written at least twice each month this year. I am glad that you’ve taken time and read. I am glad that people are following albeit my mumblings are some what still  amateurish.

These monthly musings are but a collection of thoughts, ideas and juxtapositions that have influenced my past month. Hope you like them.

Click here to share *hahahahahahahahahaha. Kidding.

Today

Today, I listened to my new favourite song over and over again. It put me in a mood I still can’t describe. I feel like a coke junkie who’s just sniffed a line. For some reason, I still can’t get over Beasts of No Nation. It keeps playing over and over again in my head as I try to relate with Agu (Abraham Attah). 

 This past month has been ephemeral. As my dream and desires and lack of accomplishments dawn on me, I am looking into myself to seek inspiration, passion and the greatness my parents once spoke of. Then again, I have to admit, life has had its way with me. I keep thinking to myself, I haven’t changed much, that tomorrow is going to be a better day, but I worry that the day will end, and I will be none the wiser.

I tried reading the book that I spent several hours downloading off of the internet, and failed. I shelved it in the to read folder up to when I have completely nothing to do. But I’ve recently felt that I have nothing completely to do, shouldn’t I at least read?

I learnt a new word that I once knew. Interesting how a word sounds familiar and yet its meaning is so distant.

I tried to understand my parents. They have been resilient about me getting a full time job. That this self employment I am indulging myself in won’t take me far. I mean, I spent my last savings on someone hoping I would get the deal. It’s been a week now, and I can barely get myself out of the house, because I am waiting for the call. Well, I am officially the CEO of the brokest design and construction company.

Is five years of architecture really worth it? I always ask myself this question when I see friends happily starting their marriages and some fathers. They seem happy, right? Oh well, I need to look for the next deal, I need to look for work.

Do you feel stagnated? I don’t know. It’s just that this muddy mental puddle of water seems to inhibit my movement. 

I like to write. I like to read what I write hoping I am as inspired as you are to read what I write. There’s amazing writers out there; Strive Masiyiwa is amongst them, and I hope to one day be as rich and still be a good of a writer as he is. 

How is your today?

Diary of A Travelling Broke Architect

Sunday 13th – Bushenyi: After weeks of lobbying for a project, I’ve finally given in, the contract though taken, I have yet lessons to learn before I can fully administer a project. After the Bushenyi incident (story for another time), maybe I should let the pros handle the project. Besides, the client’s temperament has given me hind sight. Need to prepare for the business trip to Lyantonde. 

Sunday 13th – Mbarara: Mbarara is expensive. How exactly am I supposed to stay here a night when a room goes for 70,000/- on average. Where is my saving? I met a friend who says the University Inn was affordable. I should try it. It is actually not a bad place. I am pretty sure their target is Travelling students and lecturers. Comfortable and away from the noise of the town. Not bad.

Monday 14th – Mbarara to Lyantonde: I hopped onto a Global bus just after taking my cup of tea. I’ve never had to hold my pee in so bad I felt my bladder almost burst. The conductor says that they only stop at Lyantonde. That’s about 45 minutes. Will I manage? Finally. Longest 40 minutes of my life. Sigh! That was close. Time check – 10:00am, early for the meeting. I shouldn’t use my battery, not sure where or when I will charge. Time check – 12:00pm, finally my business contact arrives. We need to wow the client. Site is extremely huge, exciting. Time check – 2:00pm, finally meet client. He’s a boss, the actual definition. He’s busy so he’ll see us in the evening. Time check – 8:00pm, finally we sit down to discuss. He’s a busy man. 

Tuesday 15th – Lyantonde; Boss man forced as to sleep in Lyantonde. My plans for heading back to Bushenyi have been sidetracked. I was supposed to go back on Monday but new work is new work. Boss man is thrifty but I am excited he’s taken a liking to me. I want to be like boss man when I grow up. So many calls from the Bushenyi contractor, client might be furious. Bushenyi work is smoothly progressing. Have to assemble a new team for the Lyantonde project tomorrow. I’ve been in the same pair of jeans and shirt since last Thurday. Mother is coming over for work tomorrow. Should see her.

Wednesday 16th – Bushenyi to Lyantonde: I finalized the Bushenyi team. In case of anything, they can give me call. The Kampala team headed for Lyantonde should be setting off now.  I miss town. Been getting calls and texts from home. They are wondering if I’ve run away. It’s been a week. Finally saw mum, she looked proud, her son was well off. I should have told her to pack me clothes. Damn it. It’s 3:00pm, Kampala team is just preparing to set off. Bloody bastards. We had agreed for 11:00am. I need to head to site. Finally on site. Boss man thought I had run away. Hahahahahaha. Seriously though. It seems I am stuck this side. I head back to the brothel looking motel I stayed in on Monday evening. Finally the team is here. It’s late but they are here.

Thurday 17th – Lyantonde: the motel didn’t have enough towels. We sat down as a team and discussed the way forward for the work, we are excited. We layed out our markers. We should kick start the project. Boss man is excited that we are a young team. He cracks a joke about how we are not married. It’s hot. Is that rain? 

Friday 18th – Lyantonde: I guess I am stuck this side of town. I have to be in Bushenyi and Mbarara tomorrow. I’ll probably head to Kampala in the evening. Next time I am packing a bag. A very huge bag.

It’s 6:20pm now, how was your week?

 The road most travelled!
 

My current work space!

  

Village Chronicles

“Agandi,” she greets.

“Turya’aho,” they retort.

I’ve never been greeted by this many number of strangers in my lifetime, when not at a party. I wonder at how courteous the people here are and why they randomly greet you. 

Unlike Kampala where it’s rush hour almost every hour, the village is more slow and peaceful the here people have time to greet you. Maybe because there are less stresses here than they are in Kampala. I don’t know why but every time I use the village taxi, and we stop to pick up someone, the first thing they do is greet the whole taxi. And we move on, and we pick up someone who greets us again, and this continues until I finally reach my destination.

I’ve been here almost a week now and every time I feel like leaving this place, I get held up. I am not complaining and truth is, I am enjoying it. I wished to be a wanderer some time again and in these past two days, I’ve been to Mbarara, Lyantonde and back to Bushenyi. Obviously accommodation has been my greatest challenge and at some point I slept in what I would call a brothel seeing as the quality of the covers was susceptible and the bar music playing was just right next door. Yes, a door away. Luckily, power went off but unfortunately I had barely charged any of my gadgets. 

Being out of Kampala is an amazing thing I have now noticed. There’s something ethereal about being on the road, interacting with people, speaking half a dozen broken languages…trust me, they are half a dozen…and having those moments where you are just to yourself, dreaming. 

Anyway…I finally found a place with wifi, in Bushenyi, surprise surprise. I best be leaving now, I need to get back on the Road.