Aderibigbe: Right People And Good Skills Equal Maximum Growth
ADEJOKE Aderibigbe is the Principal Consultant of Beamaz Consulting and Training Outfit, and she believes that organisations need the right people in the right positions to sustain and enhance their high level performance. She clearly enjoys her practice, which involves working with business and would-be business owners to nurture their businesses and achieve their organisational goals in an efficient and productive manner.
She was bred in Lagos and did all her schooling at the University of Lagos, from primary to tertiary. Her dad was a staff member and so, they all lived in the Staff Quarters.
“Growing up was so much fun, as many of the staff kids then also went through the same cycle and we ultimately developed a strong bond that still exists till date,” she recalls.
Although her original intention was to read law and become a lawyer like her father and her siblings, she ended up reading economics in the university, a decision influenced by her parents and mathematics teachers in secondary school.
“They noticed I had an interest and a flair for mathematics and other quantitative subjects, so they advised that I did a course that would allow me push my interests and abilities to the fullest. After a review of prospective courses, we narrowed it down to either banking and finance or economics. I finally decided on the latter because I felt it was broader and would give me wider choices,” she explains.
Adejoke’s life journey and experiences have been quite interesting and exciting. She has always looked up to her parents, who have influenced her throughout her life. They were her key role models.
“They sacrificed so much of themselves for their children. They refused the lure of the banking industry and chose to become teachers/academicians instead, to ensure they were there for their children, while growing up. I’m from a family of five children. I have two brothers and two sisters. I’m the third child.
“I was born in Kaduna and we lived there for a couple of years. We moved to Lagos when I was about three years old. And I love every bit of growing up in an academic environment,” she says.
One of the key values her parents hammered into her was the importance of family life. They led an exemplary life in this regard, as they showered the children with so much love and affection. Theirs was a closely-knit family and her parents hardly had friends.
“We, the kids were their friends and they spent their spare time with us, helping with homework and telling us stories. Other values they imparted into me include the importance of giving and helping others. You can’t beat my parents when it comes to giving. This probably informed my desire to be a teacher, while growing up. I love being around people and helping them. However, as I got older, I realised I didn’t have to be confined to the four walls of the classroom to do this,” she explains.
After her first degree, she also obtained a Master’s degree from the University of Lagos. Thereafter, she started her career in the banking industry. She secured employment with Access Bank Plc., where she worked with both the retail and corporate banking group. She later left Access for Guaranty Trust Bank, where she also worked with the corporate banking group. While there, she managed the accounts of big industry players and led teams on various consulting projects.
But unable to find fulfillment in spite of a very attractive salary and perks of office, she was advised by one of her mentors to try her hands on consulting because of her interests and abilities. She then left banking and moved into consulting.
To prepare her for this new venture, she joined Alliance Consulting, and it was while there that she noticed that the feeling of emptiness was gradually disappearing. So, she stayed there for a few years until she decided to move on and actualise her dream of running her own HR consulting firm. Today, she is doing well on her own.
She currently runs her own consulting and training outfit-Beamaz Consulting.
“HR Consulting is a very interesting and dynamic work. It is all about managing people in an organisation and creating the right structures that encourage productivity,” she says.
From experience, Adejoke has come to realise that a lot of businesses employ people without first having clear job descriptions and person specifications for the positions.
“So, employees come in, do anything they feel or think they are supposed to do and then wait till month end to get paid. And since typically, there are no proper appraisal systems to measure individual’s performance, they get paid without any commensurable contribution to the bottom line. The owner then begins to wonder why the business is not growing and thinks additional funding is needed, oblivious to the fact that he is paying people for non-performance. I work together with organisations to develop the proper framework and structures that will ensure they have the right people with the requisite skills, as well as the right performance management systems to measure productivity,” she explains.
Interestingly, her chosen career is also about helping people achieve their business goals, while training is about imparting knowledge and bringing out the best in people. She believes that government needs to show sincerity and commitment by showing us the ‘how’ of the agenda, i.e., how it is going to be implemented.
In her view, a large part of this ‘how’ will be for the President to break down each of the key priority areas into milestones with clear timelines attached to them. By so doing, the government will be forced to implement, as it will be easy for people to hold them accountable for non-performance.
“I would love to see a Nigeria, where things work and the masses don’t have to struggle so hard to make ends meet. If I were in a position to effect changes in Nigeria, I would make holding public offices less lucrative, thereby creating a system, where people become leaders purposely to serve the people and not just to enrich their pockets. I would, therefore, put in place structures that would ensure transparency and accountability to the people,” she says.
As a very busy person, Adejoke says time is an asset that must be invested wisely. She also believes that the individual should not be allowed to stay idle. So, in spite of her tight schedule, she still creates the time to network and mentor others.
“I am a product of mentoring and I am a great advocate of it. I have mentors that I look up to, too. Indeed, they play a huge role in my life and they have contributed a lot to my success story,” she says.
One of her ways of giving back to the society is through the Social Enterprise arm of her outfit, which is involved in youth empowerment. Through this platform, her company trains youths on how to develop their employability and entrepreneurial skills. Young people are thus challenged to develop themselves and not be idle, thereby changing their mindset. She thinks nobody should be unemployed for any reason.
“Every one of us has a champion in him or her. We all have something on the inside of us that we can harness and nurture productively. So, our slogan is this: if you can’t find someone that will employ you, then employ yourself. What we try to do is get them to have a paradigm shift. This is the only way they will achieve their life’s goal,” she says.
Girl child education, in her view is key to the development of women and the nation as a whole. To her, young girls must develop the right work and family mentality early enough without compromising standards or themselves.
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