Wang’ombe Gathondu is the chief operations officer at Avantis Services Limited, an aggregated service provider of IT systems, insurance and fleet management.
Greatest milestone: I would not be who I am today without the head start I got in my legal career. I was fortunate enough to work for a firm that gave me a platform to interact and network with multiple corporate and industry leaders. This not only gave me the experience to drive the most lucrative partnership agreements, but also served as the launching pad for the career that I have today.
Building a career: The basic ingredient of success in anything you do boils down to perseverance, hard work, and discipline. Success is not an overnight event. It is a process. I also dedicate a lot of what I have achieved so far to my supportive family. I like to think that I am still on the path to success. I also believe a number of factors come into play. Good luck is an important factor that is rarely acknowledged. Regardless of how much you prepare, how qualified or connected you are, there has to be an element of luck for you to get a pass.
You must also have the right people around you. The team you work with, your employees, suppliers, clients, financiers and other stakeholders in the business are all crucial. And for ultimate success, you need a solid family.
Biggest money mistake: I once bought some products that were part of a pyramid scheme because of how attractive the returns were. I made losses and regretted it. I learnt the hard way. I took the loss as a learning point on how to be diligent and on how to examine any prospective investment beyond the marketing parade. There is no shortcut to financial stability. You have to toil and avoid anything that promises overnight riches.
If I could go back in time: Everything I have done so far has led me to where I am now. Would I have been better off if some things were done differently? Maybe and maybe not; I guess we can never know. I have learnt from my past experiences.
My saving method: I save by investing what I get in my business. Investing grows money faster than a fixed deposit account. Also as an insurance crusader, the best way to protect yourself in time of losses or great need is to take an insurance cover.
My parting shot: Life has no blue print. Everyone needs to assess their situation, analyse it rationally, and make coherent financial decisions based on facts and realities on the ground. The rest will fall into place. If that ‘place’ happens to have a bit of an extra coin, grab it and invest in ideas you understand and are passionate about.