She describes herself first as a mother, then as a curious, entrepreneurial who likes to live on the sunny side.
Meet Sylvia Mulinge, a mother of two children who light up her world and in her own words, ‘give a lot of meaning to my everyday life.’
She went to primary school in Nakuru and later did her secondary school in Mary Mount Secondary School. She graduated with honors from the University of Nairobi with a Bachelor of Science degree in Food Science and Technology and is currently pursuing an Executive MBA amongst other courses.
With all these achievements under her belt, one would think that she is a bookworm. She, however, says she does not enjoy the scholarly life but enjoys the school of life. From this school, she has learned most of the lessons that have carried and sustained her through life.
Drive to success
Never in her wildest dreams did she ever imagine that her journey would lead her to where she now stands.
Her father, a retired engineer, has always been her inspiration. He taught her how to have a strong work ethic and discipline. Her mother on the other hand, taught her how to pray and to depend on Him who created her, to see her through what she could not achieve in her own strength.
Her parents always wanted her to be the best she could be. Their best gift to her, she says, was a good education with the knowledge that she could go out and become the best version of herself.
Her formula to rising is one, she says, she has given her best to every space she has found herself in.
She is driven by three things: Legacy, impact and purposeful living.
Safaricom Career Journey
Sylvia has been with Safaricom for the last 12 years. She joined the organization as a Prepay Product Manager and then moved to run the Retail Business as Head of Retail. In 2009, she was appointed as the Head of Sales, Safaricom Business, a position she held until 2011 when she was appointed General Manager for Enterprise Business.
In 2015, she was appointed Director of Consumer Business –commercial leadership role.
Now, as Chief Customer Officer at the region’s most prominent telco, her role is to focus on meeting the customers’ needs and discovering ways to surpass their expectations.
Her advice to women in managerial positions
Seek progress, not perfection. For in seeking perfection, happiness becomes an elusive goal. As women we beat ourselves up too much, it is not necessary. Surround yourself with a strong support ecosystem that will enable you to manage your tasks at home and bring the best of you to work.
As Patricia Murugami of Strathmore taught us, build your own personal board of directors who will keep you accountable in all your different roles, and help you become a better you.
Summing Up Life In Her Words,
Small daily improvements are the key to staggering long-term results. I am a work in progress, very conscious of the fact that I am running a race with a finish line. I am purposeful about making an impact in the lives of people around me, and I hope that in this life, I will be able to birth and bring to life that which I was created for while enjoying the journey that life places me on.