Earlier in the year, i made a one-week trip to Dubai for a leadership conference hosted by Mrs. Ibukun Awosika who happens to be one of my mentors. I decided to make that trip for a different reason which of course includes my close relationship and admiration for the convener, the networking opportunities it will bring and the conference was a closed-up event for C-suite career women and successful business leaders of various industries and also to listen to a woman I had greatly admired from afar Mrs. Shola David-Bora (Former chairperson Stanbic IBTC), did I achieve my goal for attending the conference? Yes, I did, a thousand and one times over.
In this blog post, I will be sharing a few of my takeaways from that event, which I have still held on to and I hope you can take one of two points that will also help you in your journey to becoming all that is in your power to become.
My name is Yvonne Chioma Ofodile, CEO OF Zetile Oil and Gas Ltd which is an indigenous downstream marketing and distribution Oil and Gas company in Nigeria. We are currently majoring in the door-to-door supply and delivery of AGO to commercial sites, factories, organizations, and residential estates. Managing Director of Zetile Supermarket, a fast-growing retail store in Lagos Nigeria with two branches in Lekki, Lagos Nigeria. I am also the Founder and current chairperson board of trustees for 360 Woman Africa (www.360womanafrica.com), a leading Not-For-Profit organization that has been in existence for six years and whose focus is on personal, leadership, and enterprise development for women in Africa. Through this organization, we have impacted over 8,600(Directly and indirectly) women globally, trained 200 women in business through our Mini-MBA program, and given grants to 4 women in business in Nigeria.
Attending the International Women in Leadership Conference by Ibukun Awosika became for me a personal development work and life retreat I never knew I needed. One session that has till this moment left me in awe was the keynote delivery by Madam Sola David-Bora, she brought so much illumination and mind shift as regards professional work and
She mentioned that in other to pivot you must first have a change of mindset which would involve two highlights:
1) Embracing change
2) Confronting our fears
She spoke on the 3 phases of the work life cycle which include:
1) Early Career Phase: This stage has learning, professionalism, and great teamwork as key ingredients. No one makes it on their own entirely, be a good sportsman, and manage relationships, growth on this level is about partnership, collaboration, and leveraging on teams’ strengths.
2) Mid-Career: which has opportunity, integration, and challenges as major ingredients here. Take up opportunities as they arrive, walk through doors as they open not necessarily knowing the answers, you will deal with obstacles as they come. Work and life may never balance so pace yourself, integrate as much as you can, prioritize consciously, and get a great support system that works for you. You would face challenges as you go, knowing who to call especially cos calling the wrong person can put you in bigger trouble. Never let problems immobilize you.
3) C-Suite: has governance, legacy, and grace. The purpose is about the greater good and positive impact, being able to retrieve without blemish. Lead with empathy, patience, less judgment, keep learning, and many more.
Apart from the learnings, did I network and meet other amazing trail-blazing women? o yes, I did. In fact, 10 of us from different sectors, and age groups (with me being the youngest as always, lol )from that event in Dubai, now belong to a tribe/community called Dahomey Power Circle. Our vision is to be a platform that houses the world’s finest leading women in business and careers globally. So since we became a tribe, we move as 10 no longer as one individual, because we have ourselves, solidly behind supporting, cheering, encouraging, and learning as we progress on our journey. Thanks to the leadership conference.
For the purpose of this blog post, I will limit it to just a few points mentioned and discussed. The conference is yearly and registration for next year’s event is out you might want to check www.tiwlc.com to register. One thing I know for sure everyone needs at all levels be it in career or business is mentorship, career sponsors, and networking this conference though on the high side in regards to cost, will deliver great value to you.
Less I forget … Sadly it’s only for women, so dear men hope you find one just like this soon.
Talk to you soon!!!