The man who interviewed him, Martin Thomle, eventually left Damco but not without delivering on what he said to Mohamed. He would become Mohamed’s boss, mentor and friend, pushing Mohamed to learn and take on new roles and responsibilities within the company.
The first interview
Today, Kane is the boss. The 37-year old father of three is the CEO of Damco in West Africa. From his office in Dakar, Senegal, he oversees the Damco's operations in the West Africa region, which include 190 employees across six countries. Along the way, he has held a variety of operational, commercial and general management roles in East, Central and West African countries – what he describes as an “end-to-end education in the business of logistics.”
“Very often I didn’t feel entirely ready for a job, but others believed in me, trusted me and helped me succeed. And every job gave me a new perspective on the business, a better understanding of the different parts of the business and how they come together,” he says.
Kane says he will never forget that first interview and the long-term view it gave him, even if he was not ready to embrace it. And, he is proud to be in the position now to make sure young people coming into the business get opportunities to learn and succeed like he did.
“Sometimes when you’re young, you want it all, but you have to make choices. I now know I made the right one. What I’ve learned in just twelve years is invaluable, as are the experiences I’ve had, and I’ve got a lot more to learn, I know that,” he says.
“What’s extremely important to me, is ensuring that new candidates coming into our business get opportunities to grow, that we encourage them and help them make clear plans for their development and support them, and also push them a bit like I was, as they progress,” he says.