Recently, Adele Olwage celebrated a milestone 20th anniversary with Adapt IT Education. A fete that most of us can only dream of. Matshepo Faith Njilo reached out to Adele to chat about her experience and journey.
Q: Can you tell us more about your role and background?
A: 20 years ago, I started as a very Junior Developer and for the first two years, all I did was convert programs to Oracle Report Writer. It is with a sad heart that I see all my babies being converted to Jasper Reports. I’ve been fortunate to have progressed from Junior Developer to Lead Developer.
Q: What do you like most about working for Adapt IT Education?
A: The people I work with are the best thing about working at Adapt IT Education – most of us have worked here for a long time. I’ve had the privilege of seeing their kids grow up and become adults and share in their lives. Working alongside my brother and sister has also been a privilege since we get to share our whole lives.
Q: What’s the one thing you wish you knew before you started working here?
A: I was a teacher before I started working here and there you knew that every year the same process repeats itself but I always thought – what do you do at an IT company once the program has been written? Surely then it is done and dusted – so what do they do all day?!
Q: How would you describe the work environment?
A: I know that everyone that is still working at Adapt IT after 10 years is truly an exceptional person. You need guts and a bit of crazy to survive here. But once you’re part of the clan it’s difficult to leave.
Q: How have your contribution benefitted the business?
A: All I know is that I’ve always tried to do the best I can whether it was on the hot seat or developing a new program. At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself if your efforts were according to your abilities and if you can feel proud of what you’ve done. So I cannot comment on if the business benefitted from my contribution but I know I’m proud of what I’ve helped build over the last 20 years.
Q: What excites you the most about your role?
A: My first answer would be the challenges – and then I think of all the stress it has caused – but then in the end the answer stays the same.
Q: What are the lessons learned that you would share with your colleagues or a person starting their careers?
A: There is a method in working yourself up from the bottom – learn what you can at each level – don’t try to skip the bottom steps of the ladder just to get a more important title or a bigger paycheck. You cannot do it alone – I’ve learned that I need God to guide me every day in my personal life but also my work life. A lot of problems have been solved after a desperate prayer for some divine programming wisdom. Ephesians 3: 20-21 says “God can do abundantly more than we can ask for or even think of and He has done that in my life and my career.”