Looking to The Future

Up-close & Candid with Powell Maimba

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Powell Grey Maimba talked to us about his experiences, milestones and achievements in the two years that he was Managing Director at Galana Oil Kenya Limited. He became the second MD since the inception of the company in 2001.

GO!Hub: How has the journey been?

Powell: Interesting! We have managed to achieve so much together from rebranding to opening of new Stations and the Delshops. It feels like we have been together for a very longtime. It has been a mix of both anxiety and excitement.

GO!Hub: What led you to originally accept the position of MD at the organization?

Powell: The welcoming spirit of the directors. When I went for the interview, it was more of a conversation with the directors and not an interview as opposed to what I had been experiencing from other organizations.

GO!Hub: What did you like most, and least, about being the MD of this organization

Powell: Team spirit. Staff at Galana work as a team and face challenges with a very positive attitude. They believe that any project can be done and are always ready to learn. There is also no bureaucracy to delay/stop flow of work. It is a small company, focused and easy to manage.

‘I don’t think there is anything I didn’t like about Galana.’

GO!Hub: Did you experience any culture shock especially given the fact that you come from a different country?

Powell: Yes of course! Kenya is more of an individualistic open society; people are entrepreneurs, more modernized and commercialized as opposed to my home country that is laid back and more collectivistic.  

However something that really shocked me is that although Kenyans are extremely welcoming to foreigners, they can at times be brutal to each other and are very tribal.

GO!Hub: What accomplishments are you most proud of during your time as the MD?

Powell: When I joined Galana in 2015, there was a lot of uncertainty in the company. However all that changed when we started rebranding our Delta stations and building Delshops which made Galana more visible and improved its competitive edge in the industry.

Giving hope and getting people to know and achieve what is expected of them is actually another achievement I am proud of.

I was also able to restructure the company, enabling people to realize skills that they didn’t think they had before and eventually growing in their careers.

GO!Hub: The GO!Hub team and Magazine wouldn’t have been formed if it were not for you, what led to the idea of a company magazine?

Powell: Well initially it was just to store memories and share information on what’s happening in the company both business wise and socially. For instance the milestones we achieved, the events we attended together like the hikes, marathons, weddings etc. It was fulfilling to both me and the entire Board of Directors seeing the staff unleashing and exercising their editorial talents in the last two editions.

I shared the magazine with a friend and he was amazed at how the magazine was so professionally done, he couldn’t believe it was done by amateurs!

GO!Hub: Where do you see GO!Hub 3 or 5 years from now?

Powell: Actually not 3 or 5 but 2 years from now, my hope is that GO!Hub would be a local magazine with international standards. I would love to see it expand its distribution. Secondly let each department share in their achievements. You can dedicate one edition for a certain department in the organization to share in their experiences and achievements.

Thirdly let us go beyond Galana and get stories from customers’ experience through the customer service week, station and shop attendants as this would increase its widespread.  Hopefully I would still be getting a copy of the magazine.

GO!Hub: Advise to the incoming MD?

Powell: An MD is like a movie director, so just like the movie director would direct actors, let the incoming MD direct the company and the employees and start building a legacy and creating value immediately. A movie is never successful without actors hence he cannot be successful without support from the staff.

GO!Hub: Parting shot?

Powell:  The sky is the limit only if you have the right skills to reach there. Continue having a positive attitude and learning daily. Do an evaluation of yourself often and improve on your weak areas. If you can create your own value, you have the ability to succeed.