Friday, April 24, 2015

What it Takes to Become a Community Manager

Mugethi at her workplace, in the iHub. Photo credit: Abu Okari

Mugethi at her workplace, in the iHub. Photo credit: Abu Okari

Mugethi Gitau is the Community Manager of the iHub. I had a chat with Mugethi this week to get a better picture of what it means to be a Community Manager. Hopefully this will help you decide if it’s the right job for you, and if you would be a good fit. If this article perfectly describes you, maybe you should be applying to Community Manager job openings…

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  Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Your social network matters!


According to a study conducted by Jobvite94% of recruiters now use social media in their effort to recruit fresh candidates.

Not only that, Jobvite also announced that over 78% of recruiters have made a successful hire over social media, and 42% have reevaluated decisions about candidates based on their social network profiles.

As a jobseeker, this would make me think long and hard about the content, images, and profile details I publish on my social media pages.

If you were a recruiter, what would you look most positively upon?

Post about…

–       Volunteering?

–       Political opinions?

–       Current events?

On the other hand, what would you look most negatively upon?

Posts about…

–       Alcohol consumption?

–       Drug use?

–       References to violence?

–       Sexual experiences?

 Think about what an employer is looking for in a staff member.


–       Responsible

–       Healthy

–       Moral

–       Intelligent

–       Conscientious 

Recruiters will look at your Duma Works or LinkedIn profile to assess your technical skills, work experience, and duration at a job. They will also look at your Twitter and Facebook to assess your company fit.

What does your social media say about yourself?

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  Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Data at Duma Works Can Grow You (& Your Company!)

Screen Shot 2014-02-06 at 11.35.29 AM

Duma Works is straying from the simple job board format to deliver more effective results to employers and job seekers alike.

The “IBM Global Entrepreneurship Day,” kick started a discussion on entrepreneurship and how to grow a company. One of the key points that IBM brought to the talks was a focus on the importance of data to growing companies effectively.

Understanding, processing, and helping other people understand data regarding the job market is hugely important if Kenya wants to create jobs, and create happier, more efficient SMEs and workers.  Two of the biggest job-related issues in Kenya today are ghost workers and mismatched workers. Duma Works helps solve these issues by conducting research on the Kenya job market and integrating the results into its job matching technology. By leveraging real time data, Duma Works provides companies with an effective means to match job opening to job seeker and a dynamic platform to track employee performance post-hire.

If technology can be leveraged to give access about a job opening to only relevant candidates, how much time and money would employers save in the interview process? If data can be leveraged to help job seekers understand what qualities are required for jobs in certain sectors, how much more could they improve upon themselves?

It turns out that over 80% of data in the world is unstructured, left misunderstood in scattered Excel files on a computer. Let’s not add to that pile of data. Let’s try to better understand it and teach it in order to drive growth in companies and development in the people behind the companies.

Read more:

To learn more about Duma Works and our services –

To see how data-driven Google is, and how this can reveal things about our society –

To watch a neat video on IBM’s Watson robot using data to dominate on Jeopardy gameshow –

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  Monday, November 18, 2013

“DEFINE What You Want and FOCUS on It” – Interview with Anna Akinyi

Anna Blog

We met with Anna Akinyi, founder of Top Down Concepts in Nairobi, and here’s what she had to say to the youth of Kenya…

Tell me a bit about yourself…

Professionally, I am a trained Pharmacy professional. I graduated in 1992, but immediately after that, I worked in a hospital pharmacy for 2 years, administering medication. Then I switched to sales and marketing for multinationals.


Curiosity – I just got bored working in a hospital and though sales and marketing would be super glamorous. I saw people who I was in class with working for these big multinationals and thought hmm…I’d like to do that.

I then worked with 1 firm from Belgium that was bringing a new pharmaceutical product to market. That job gave me the opportunity to discover Kenya – places I would never been to before. And I went by matatu!

That must have been bumpy…

But it was exciting because I was young, energetic, going to explore.

The rest of my career in pharmaceutical sales was with Astrazeneca, and I was able to travel all over – Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania. I finally was able to move up the ranks to become a trainer of sales representatives. That’s when I decided to marry my professional career with my passion to get TopDown– an organization that would dedicate itself to developing and growing SMEs.

At TopDown, we give sales and marketing support focusing in the pharmaceutical industry. I’ve worked with hotels on how to train their sales staff and how to increase their visibility. There are modules to improve soft skills and sales skills of staff, how to get people to be more inclined to use their product. Based on my experience dealing with pharmaceutical sales, I found fast moving consumer goods sales very easy because healthcare providers are the toughest to sell to!

So tell me a little more about TopDown

Well, we are a service that tailors our programs to client needs. We don’t give them what we have but what they need to realize their organizational goals through their sales force and the marketing. We make companies more visible in their competitive environment. We also follow through and have implementation modules.

What types of clients do you work with?

We mostly work with clients in the pharmaceutical industry. I have a few proposals in the pipeline with some international companies trying to enter the Kenyan market  who want to connect with doctors, sales people, other organizations.

Also I am currently working with the Mvuli Hotel in Nairobi to help them gain more visibility in the market.

What do you think the most popular myth regarding sales is?

Myth: You have to talk about the features of what you offer without translating it to the needs of your client. People talk a lot about features about the goods or services they have but don’t translate it to benefits.

Truth: You need to translate the features into benefits. Our training develops people to translate those features into benefits – and that’s a full day exercise.

Do you have a favorite success story from your work?

I’m working with a client right now who wants to grow his business from 600,000ksh/annum to 1billion/annum. I am going to part of that journey and that is exciting. He’s taking me on because I am going to help him get there. We want it to happen by the end of 2014. If you think it is so, you can.

What is your personal brand?

I see myself as having a passion for excellence and realizing the highest standards. People should not put them down because they are small. Being small does not mean you cannot be excellent. So my personal brand is achieving excellence – be good at what you do no matter how small you are.

Is there one person in your life who has inspired/pushed you to get here?

Many people inspire me many companies inspire me – I think Polycarp Igathe is brilliant.

If you could give 1 piece of advice to our job seekers…

Define what you want and focus on it. If what you want to do is defined clearly in your mind, focus on it and figure out what it is that you need to do to get there. Do not be swayed by environment or circumstance. I did that for myself, which was a bit deviant– not many people going into sales and marketing at the time. I sent out over 100 application and got regrets and regrets. However, I was determined that I was going to do it. Moreover, I knew when I got it, I was going to do it well. It was not about the pay I was getting. When you are passionate about something you are remembered – by the people you touched, and by the people you have talked to. I have many friends who are doctors that I met over 20 years ago who still remember me and prescribe to Astrazeneca because of me.

Most of all – enjoy what you do, and do it because you enjoy it.

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  Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Jobseekers of Nairobi…



Q. What advice can you give to a young person out there who is hustling to make it in life?

A. First of all no one should call themselves a hustler because they have the potential to get out there and do all they can to make it in life. The simpler it is the better and if you work on it well and love what you are doing within a period of time you are going to grow in it.

Q. What was the worst job you have ever taken?

A. Personally, I have never been employed. I have always been trying out new things like singing and acting and am still doing and earning from it.


Q. What advice can you give to a young person out there who is hustling to make it in life?

A. I would tell them to take advantage of the youth fund and other government initiatives for the youth to start their own businesses.

Q. If you won 1 million shillings what would you do with it?

A. I would have fun and go on a holiday!

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  Tuesday, September 17, 2013

DUMA Lands a Place in DEMO Africa!

demo africa

We never thought that when we created a profile on VC4Africa we would have the honor of presenting at DEMO Africa with 39 other select entrepreneurs! Congratulations to all the other startups who were selected to demo as well, including SleepOut.

We’ll see you on the big stage under the bright lights Oct. 24 -25 🙂

Anyone interested to learn more about DEMO Africa, check out this great article on DEMO by Miguel Heilbron –

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