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You can measure opportunity with the same yardstick that measures the risk involved. They go together.

Earl Nightingale

Last week, tech twitter was rocked with the announcement Seni Sulyman, Vice President, Global Operations at Andela, made on his transitioning from Andela. In a medium post, he revealed

“There’s never a right time to say goodbye to a community I love from the bottom of my heart, and people I’ve built life-long relationships with. After four tremendous years at Andela, I am transitioning out of my role as Vice President of Global Operations and into the Alumni Network on May 15.”

For him, it is a bitter-sweet moment for me especially with the COVID-19 pandemic. For the four years journey he has had with Andela, he mentioned his pride at

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“the dent we’ve put in the universe in such a short time, and I expect Andelans to continue writing the future. Removing the barriers that prevent engineers in emerging tech ecosystems from accessing the best opportunities and experiences in the world, is a mission that is fundamentally changing how the world engages with talented people, even beyond software engineering”.

This is not surprising considering that he was led to Andela through an opportunity he recognized to solve the problem of the lack of tech and engineering talent while he worked for a small airline company in Lagos.

Seni Sulyman is a young Nigerian entrepreneur and the Vice President, Global Operations at Andela. He is a trained engineer and a Harvard-trained business executive. Like many others who take a career break from senior positions in top firms, Seni Sulyman said he would be taking a “personalized sabbatical to rest, rest, rest, reflect, read, write, and re-energize”, plan new sessions of his show – Real Talk with Seni and share his learnings with other entrepreneurs and leaders building companies.

Speaking on the next leadership for the position he will be leaving vacant, he said,

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“As I move into alumni status, Omowale (Omowale David-Ashiru) will continue to lead Africa operations, supported by a phenomenal team of Country Directors, completing a transition that we began last year…”

While leaving senior positions vacant usually rocks most companies, the sign of true leadership and a healthy organization is the seamless flow in which people can take up roles without further unsettling the organization and the people in it. I hope this is true for Andela especially as this news is coming barely six months after the mass lay off.

On the most gratifying achievement he has had in Andela, he said it was “building the remarkable team leading our Africa delivery centers” and his disappointment is “at not being able to visit our various offices one more time in person due to travel restrictions imposed by various countries”.

One thing we can all agree on is that his passion for technology and love for people has shaped his dream of fusing technology with business so as to bridge the talent gap in Nigeria. While, he goes on hi sabbatical, we can only hope for him to come out with bright ideas which will continue his passion for tech and people.

Featured Image Source: Face2Face Africa

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This article was first published on 6th April 2020 and updated on April 7th, 2020 at 9:38 am


Aanuoluwapo Olajide is a freelance writer who believes that words are fundamental blocks and are the force of life and death. She is a tech enthusiast, fashion designer and a lover of words.

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