I LOVE MY JOB! Written in capital letters yet it does not entirely holistically capture the depth of the love I have for my job. I always love to assume that I sell the one thing Nigerians hate to buy the most – insurance. Deeper than the love I have for my job is the love I have for my company.
Growing up from nothing and being constantly told I need to follow the norm to have a happy life, I always appreciate the courage of those who dare to go against the tide. Mediocrity was the norm I saw as a child, the only thing visible and celebrated. A used car worth a million naira was our Bugatti and a bungalow house was our DC mansion. I thought that was all to life and like my peers, I worshipped the meagre show of wealth.
Leaving Benin for Jos was the scariest decision I have made in my life so far. The uncertainty tasted like death and of course, the fear of terrorism filled my family with an inherent fear for my life (I hope to share the story someday). After NYSC I secured a job with Leadway Assurance Company Limited. I knew nothing of her story except the fact that I was finally securing a source of financial gratification.
Eventually, I learnt the story of the late Sir Hassan Odukale, founder of Leadway, a tailor who started an insurance company in his garage. It was amazing, impossible and all the fire I needed to get my own life started. That was the day I fell in love with the brand. I identified with it on a deeper level, we were soulmates.
It was therefore no hassle pushing sales. Marketing, you see, is just telling people about the boy you love. I love Leadway and I loved the hunt for marketing. As a Leo, a lioness, nothing brings me more joy than hunting. More so, I am a sucker for psychology, deeply intrigued by human behavior.
All this combined has pushed me up the ladder on my job, earning me accounts no one of my colleagues could get. This attribute earned me a place in my boss’ heart. He knows I love the big stage; he understands I shine brightest in the scariest places. My accounts would run in hundreds of millions annually, my clients are known for their lumpsum payments. One account would close my target for the entire year. The power of true love!!!
On this fateful Tuesday, I was asked to accompany my boss to the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies in Jos, Plateau State. It was a big institution, one of the biggest in Jos. Politicians and military officers all over the country attended this school. The auditorium was set up like the senate’s red chambers. The sight was enough to intimidate anyone, and it intimidated my boss.
The time for the presentation came and my boss was hit with stage fright. He was frozen and kept stuttering throughout the presentation barely passing across the message we had come to share. My boss was an amazing and intelligent man but stage fright had thrown him off balance.