Living in Africa’s second-largest city with a population of over 15 million people comes with mixed feelings and expectations. At first, it is exciting to be among so many people, economic resources, opportunities, enterprise, energy, prospects, and dreams. But the excitement and energy soon get depleted by the challenges that come with living and working in a megacity like Lagos. The city offers several opportunities and options which are usually sandwiched between a few challenges that are typical of a modern metropolis.
A megacity like Lagos, with so much hustle and bustle, has its share of not-so-pleasant experiences. This includes long traffic hours, the high cost of food items, and other basic amenities like clothing and rent costs. The high cost of living is prevalent in high-brow environments like Ikoyi, Lekki, or Victoria Island. The dense population of the city is mostly responsible for the enterprise culture and the expensive goods and services. As a city in an import-dependent country with Africa’s largest population, Lagos is indeed expensive and simultaneously exciting.
Nigeria is arguably the entertainment capital of Africa, and you can guess where the entertainment hub is situated? It’s “Lasgidi” like we often call it. Lagos is home to Africa’s entertainment activities and this consoles us for the incessant power blackouts, the unending traffic jam, and the occasional long petrol-station queues amongst others.
Juggling an Executive MBA in Lagos with a professional career having a regular 9 am -5 pm work schedule is daunting. Being a husband and a father in the 21st century also contributes to an experience worth writing about. I am not alone in this fascinating routine and, interestingly, other generation X individuals do not waste the opportunity to be active in Nigeria’s financial capital despite the accompanying stress. The majority of Lagos residents wake up as early as 5:30 am and hit the road shortly after to avoid traffic. This allows us to reach the office on time and is an essential part of our daily routine.
I am a learned individual who is aware of the need for continuous professional development. I enrolled in an executive MBA program in line with my aspirations and well-defined career objectives. While I can attest that it has been an enlightening experience, it has its share of challenges. I have had to stay awake till late frequently to complete my individual and group assignments.
These activities eat into my sleep and my leisure time, but then who sleeps a regular 8 hours in Lagos? It is impracticable for a young ambitious Lagosian who works and is studying to afford long hours of rest. The EMBA’s demands are unending and the quest for success remains undying.
Even if juggling so many responsibilities together isn’t an easy task, Lagosians will still not fret. This is because the hustle and bustle Lagos lifestyle is fun, exhilarating, challenging, and here to stay. We will not replace this Lasgidi with another because we will continue to optimize its opportunities. The challenges drive us. We move. Eko o ni baje!