How to succeed In Africa’s Tech Industry: Advice from an Expert

The tech sector is a vast and evolutionary entity that, in many ways, appears to be insensitive to the ups and downs of economic performance.

It’s also a global industry, and while it may be synonymous with Silicon Valley, there are a variety of cities around the world that are also hubs for innovation and digital growth.

Indeed, Africa is fast becoming a leading industrial digital powerhouse in the tech industry.

Its popularity with developers and investors will help diversify the industry and create additional employment opportunities for qualified individuals.

While aspiring technology professionals have a wider range of potential employment opportunities to choose from, there is no guarantee they will thrive in such a volatile and competitive marketplace.

So, if you want to develop a successful career and represent one of the market leaders, you must consider the following 12 ways to succeed in the technology sector:

1. Identify your areas of interest in the technology sector.

The technology sector is one of the most diverse marketplaces in the world, which means there are multiple areas of expertise to specialize in.

Therefore, it is important that you identify any areas of particular interest and understand whether or not you have the skills to be successful in those disciplines.

With so much competition in fields like software development and website design, an underlying enthusiasm can also give you a distinct advantage when applying for jobs.

2. Consider individual sectors and their potential for future growth. 

Once you have identified technology-related careers and disciplines that appeal to you, the next step is to examine their viability in the existing economic climate.

Demand for certain technological products and services is constantly fluctuating according to innovation trends and the general economic climate, so you need to measure this before making a firm decision.

After all, there is little point in pursuing a career path that does not offer real potential for long-term growth and development. However, the tech industry is not like that, every aspect of the tech sector is scalable although industry standards may change which will adversely affect a sector. For example, CMS like Wix and WordPress is the preferred choice these days to hard-coding CMS used in the past.

3. Be proactive in developing targeted industry competencies. 

As a changing and evolving industry, the technology sector constantly places new demands on its workers.

While the rate of innovation and advancement is more pronounced in some markets than others, anyone who wants to thrive in the technology industry must remain proactive as they update their qualifications and search for relevant skills.

The search engine marketing industry is the most prominent example of this, as the changing nature of paid search and Google AdWords requires employees to adopt a persistent learning approach and regularly update their skills.

4. Develop experience in your desired market. 

Whether you are completely new to the technology industry or have previously worked in a relevant field, it is important that you gain experience in the sector you are targeting.

One of the best ways to do this is as a freelance contractor, as it gives you hands-on experience and extra income without having to give up your existing career.

As a self-employed contractor, you can divide your workload sensibly and gradually establish yourself as an industry expert.

5. Build a strong network of industry contacts.

Another advantage of freelancing is that you are exposed to a global pool of relevant industry contacts as you have the opportunity to represent companies and clients from all over the world.

This can have a huge impact on your potential for future growth and development and ensure you have access to a steady stream of viable employment opportunities.

A strong and interactive professional network is essential if you want to continue to thrive in the technology sector.

6. Communicate openly and directly with colleagues.

Let’s face it, there are some areas in the tech industry that are particularly challenging and consistently stressful.

Take, for example, the provision of IT services, which generally requires the maintenance of an entire computer network and the completion of urgent, real-time tasks on a daily basis.

Proactive and direct communication skills are therefore essential as they allow you to speak openly about the progress of individual tasks and ensure that your colleagues are kept informed of the technical issues that are hampering their productivity.

7. Learn the art of improvisation. 

As anyone who has ever interviewed for a technology role can attest, there is a strong emphasis on analytical thinking.

Additionally, more and more tech employers are keen to assess their candidates’ ability to improvise, especially in terms of developing innovative and unorthodox solutions.

Problem-solving remains the most important skill a technician must possess, and it is equally important that you be able to devise unique and unusual solutions when traditional remedies fail.

8. Be innovative and inventive.

Similarly, the ability to think innovatively and creatively should inform every aspect of your work in the technology sector.

This applies not only to the strategies and solutions you develop when solving problems, but also to the methods you use to present your ideas, communicate with colleagues, and drive product development.

While an inventive and unorthodox way of working doesn’t always produce results, it at least offers a unique perspective that can help companies thrive in their chosen market.

9. A keen sense of PR and marketing Google embodies.

The nature of the modern technology sector as it is constantly coming up with new ideas and concepts for the future.

One of the key drivers has been the creation of greater convergence in online marketing practices, which has had a significant impact on the technology sector.

More specifically, technology workers must strive to develop a better understanding of concepts such as marketing and PR, especially those who need to successfully develop commercial websites or maintain interactive social networks on behalf of clients.

10. A strong and resilient character.

As in any fast-paced or competitive market, the realities of the technology sector can be extremely harsh.

This is especially true in the areas of software and product development, where even market-leading companies like Google have wasted millions of dollars on flawed and ultimately unsuccessful projects.

Such failures are inevitable in an ever-changing industry that relies on innovative thinking.

Therefore, technology workers must have a strong and resilient character that allows them to bounce back from individual disappointments.

11. Stay open to changes and advancements.

Relatively high levels of involuntary staff turnover are also prevalent in the competitive technology sector, as companies are continually forced to aggressively seek leading industry talent.

This can have a very detrimental impact on technology workers, who occasionally find their jobs threatened by the arrival of more proactive or qualified employees.

With this in mind, it is imperative that you remain open to change and persistently seek new employment opportunities.

12. Attend technology fairs and events.

In conclusion, your chances of success in the technology industry depend heavily on your philosophical attitude and approach to work.

The fine margins of success are often determined by seemingly insignificant factors, and you must be willing to demonstrate your enthusiasm, strength of character, and ability to think innovatively if you are to succeed.

Regularly attending trade shows and events is a great way to put this into practical action as they give you access to the latest real-time trends and innovative innovations.