Shattering Stereotypes and Amplifying African Talent: Meet Karen Kavete an African Woman from Kenya. With an unwavering determination to shatter stereotypes and conquer the remote job market, Karen is on a mission to build a fulfilling and rewarding career that defies all odds. Join us as we delve into the untold story of Karen’s quest for success in a realm often plagued by limitations and preconceptions. From the picturesque landscapes of Kenya to the virtual spaces connecting professionals worldwide, Karen’s journey serves as a testament to the unwavering spirit and boundless potential of African talent. Her story is not just about personal achievements; it represents a collective struggle to dismantle barriers and amplify the voices of African professionals in remote work.
Hi Karen, thank you for joining us, could you please provide a concise summary of your background and professional experience, particularly in the context of remote work?
My name is Karen Kavete, and I hold a degree in Sociology from Maseno University in Kenya. As a Freelancer, I have had the privilege of working remotely in diverse sociological fields such as Community Development, Research, Program Support, and Monitoring & Evaluation. Over the course of seven years, I have collaborated with both local and international organizations. Previously, I served as the community manager for Well Aware, a US-based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing clean water to communities in Kenya. In addition to my professional endeavors, I am actively involved as a volunteer life coach in various girls’ schools and conduct workshops on Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) in schools and communities.
That’s so amazing, could you also elaborate on your experiences of working remotely as an African?
Working remotely has brought me immense joy and a sense of liberation. Unlike traditional office-based roles, I have the freedom to manage my own schedule and prioritize tasks according to my preferences. This autonomy enables me to deliver exceptional results, exceeding what is possible with fixed schedules. Additionally, remote work has allowed me to spend more quality time with my family, which was a luxury I did not have in previous office-based positions.
On the topic of remote job opportunities, have you encountered any challenges during your search for remote work?
One of the primary obstacles I have faced is the relatively limited availability of remote work in my region. Remote jobs are still relatively new and unfamiliar here, leading to fewer opportunities. Moreover, establishing the necessary professional network plays a vital role in securing remote employment, which can be challenging due to its nascent nature. Another hindrance has been the bias based on country. Some remote recruitment platforms exclude certain African countries, limiting the options for aspiring remote workers.
Considering your aspirations, which remote job boards and companies align with your career goals, and what draws you to them?
My dream has always been to contribute to transforming the lives of children, particularly in refugee camps and marginalized communities. Consequently, I am constantly seeking out projects that support children’s well-being and empower young girls. I possess strong project management skills and am fully capable of initiating and leading startup organizations. From an early age, I have aspired to work or volunteer with the United Nations because of its unwavering commitment to humanity.
In your professional experience, have you ever encountered discrimination based on your race during a remote job interview or in the job market? If so, how did you handle such situations?
Fortunately, I have been fortunate enough to undergo a fair and professional interview process in my previous experiences. Discrimination based on race has not been a significant challenge for me personally.
That’s really nice. Considering the potential for remote companies to benefit from African talent, what actions do you believe such companies can take to ensure greater visibility and hiring of African professionals?
There is an abundance of untapped potential in Africa waiting to be harnessed. Remote companies can establish partnerships with local universities to tap into fresh talent and leverage social media platforms to promote their work, consequently reaching out to the vast talent pool within Africa.
I agree, that would help bridge the gap and provide a wider access to amazing African Talents. Are you currently seeking new opportunities in the job market? If so, what would you like to highlight as your unique selling point to recruiters or founders who may come across your profile?
Yes, I am actively exploring new opportunities. As an experienced remote worker, I offer flexibility in terms of working hours and location, ensuring seamless connectivity across all communication channels. Furthermore, I pride myself on being adaptable, well-organized, focused, and intelligent. My track record of delivering successful projects demonstrates my ability to work diligently and maintain a high level of integrity even in the absence of direct supervision.
Lastly, I would like to seek your advice for fellow remote workers or job seekers. What words of wisdom would you impart to them?
My advice to fellow job seekers is to embrace diversification and lifelong learning. The journey of education and personal growth never ends, and during periods of unemployment, one can acquire new skills to stay engaged and combat the anxieties that often accompany job searching. Engaging in volunteer work is also highly beneficial for both your CV and mental well-being, as it helps maintain and enhance your skill set. Most importantly, never lose hope and remain steadfast in your pursuit of opportunities.
P.S., Karen is currently looking for remote opportunities and she would love to contribute to the success of any organization. You can reach out to her via Email or LinkedIn