TV Role Models Every Motherland Mogul Needs

T.V. has become more than a pastime after work, recently shows have moved from solely entertaining to also providing commentary on key social issues. Shows that are brave enough to address race, gender, family and relationship issues have sparked conversation that we so need in today’s society. Women are leading more t.v. shows, especially women of colour which is so important for representation. So here’s my list of  T.V Role Models who inspire me to be a flawsome, hardworking and yet still witty Motherland Mogul.

 

Oprah Winfrey, the Oprah Winfrey Show and her own television network HARPO

 

We all grew up watching Oprah. Seeing her ask the hard questions, share her story and watch her rise as one of the most powerful figures in television history. When in doubt, I always ask myself ‘What would Oprah do?’ If there is any inspirational figure to look up to, it’s her. She shows the power of determination, hardwork and most importantly not leaving anyone behind. Her dedication to telling the stories of the marginalized and giving back shows that no matter how high you rise, you don’t have to do it alone.

 

Gina Torres, Jessica Pearson in Suits

 

Image result for jessica pearson quote gif

Where do we even start: her impeccable dressing, her sharp one liners, or maybe the fact that Jessica was the managing partner of her own law firm. Her confidence is calm and elegant, with a sharp sting when she is tested. Feel inspired by her ability to always be calm even when things are unraveling and how she always manages to rise above the mess.

 

Tracee Ellis Ross, Rainbow Johnson in Blackish

Image result for rainbow johnson quote gif

I consider Rainbow the coolest and funniest mom on t.v. Blackish is one of the most intelligent shows, that deals with the dynamics of race, politics and society, in a way that isn’t lecturing but, rather starting the necessary conversations. She balances her work and home life, showing us that sometimes doing things the unconventional way may at times be the best way.

 

Yvonne Orji, Molly in Insecure

Now listen up, Motherland Moguls, if you have not watched Insecure you will be disowned. My love for this show aside, Molly is one of characters on t.v who is career driven and won’t let her hard work go unrecognised. When her bosses fail to show appreciation for her abilities, she doesn’t sit in a corner complaining, but instead, shows initiative by taking up more responsibilities; and when that still even is not enough, she seeks to have her talents appreciated elsewhere.

She pushes her own career boundaries and so should you. Don’t be afraid to ask for that raise or promotion when you know you deserve it. It also doesn’t hurt to take on more tasks and various projects, as this indicates you are a team player. The biggest lesson we can learn from Molly? Your career is in your hands, the choices you make, and how you react to adverse situations will determine how you’ll move forward and succeed in your journey to the top.

 

Naomi Campbell, The Face, Empire, Star

Naomi is well known for being one of the world’s most famous supermodels. So having her on this list may be confusing but, she’s also a t.v. diva. Naomi has an attitude and she owns it. A lot of people may see this as a questionable trait, but I believe that a little attitude ‘ain’t never hurt nobody’. Naomi is inspirational to the Motherland Mogul who is told her brazenness is intimidating or unfriendly. She also doesn’t sleep on herself; know your worth and make it work.

 

Kerry Washington, Olivia Pope in Scandal

This one is for the entrepreneurial Motherland Moguls because: let’s admire Olivia’s business acumen; she is smart, outspoken and when push comes to shove, she stands firm. Her loyalty to her team is admirable, the gladiators stick together and they know they can rely on Olivia. Questionable life choices aside, her white coat and hat are untouchable; her clients come first and she always goes the extra mile to get things done. Plus we all want a piece from her enviable wardrobe.

 

Gabrielle Union, Mary Jane Paul in Being Mary Jane

 

I think anyone who watches the show has a love hate relationship with Mary Jane. She tests our patience often but you cannot fault her ambition or her confidence. The show does not gloss over her complex relationships and friendships and navigates around the ideas of suicide, infidelity and infertility, topics that are taboo in black communities.

So how is Mary Jane inspirational? She takes risks at work showing that sometimes to propel yourself forward, you have to throw caution to the wind. It is completely okay to be invested to your career, set goals and be determined to make it work. Your professional ambitions are a character strength, and you have the right to make them your focus.


Who are your T.V Role Models and why?

Let us know here.

Women at Afroes: Anne and Gathoni are Leading the Mobile Gamification Path

 

Afroes , short for ‘African heroes’, is a mobile-first enterprise. They’re on a mission to position African youth for productive futures by, innovating in skills acquisition, engagement and connecting to opportunity.

Anne Githuku-Shongwe is a Social Entrepreneur, Social Innovator, a Development Professional and a thought leader on digital and social innovation. Anne founded Afroes in 2010, as a digital enterprise. Creating gamified learning solutions designed to reach, teach and connect Africa’s young women and men to life skills, through their mobile phones.

Her vision is to revolutionise learning in Africa, with a focus on delivering positive, Africa-focused mobile phone entertainment to the youth market across the continent. Anne and Afroes have received multiple awards including, the prestigious Schwab Foundation/World Economic Forum Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2013.

Gathoni Mwai is a Sustainable Development professional. She has over 7 years experience working on social development issues in Africa, and on the use of data, technology and innovation for development.

Having been brought up in Kenya she is passionate about the country, its people and seeing them all thrive. Gathoni joined Afroes as project manager for the development of the PeaceApp award winning Haki II: Chaguo Ni Lako, ,a mobile game that was used for peace building in Kenya, in the run up to the 2013 elections following the post election violence experienced in 2007-8.

She recently completed her Masters in Sustainable Development Corporate Responsibility. Currently, she takes on the role of Kenya programme manager, where she is tasked with scaling the Afroes product range and developing partnerships.

Join us on this inspiring  journey as we share the stories of these two front-running African women in tech.


Tell us the story behind Afroes

Afroes (the name comes from a play on the words African Heroes and Heroines) was inspired by conversations with my children. I was worried that they weren’t being exposed to any positive African media content; and that their ideas and aspirations for Africa were being influenced by the Western media’s pervasively negative messages about the continent.

I wanted to do something to change that. But it was whilst I observed my son excitedly relating things he’d learned while playing the computer game, Civilisations, that I realised that, children who play computer games are a captive audience for anything you want to teach them.

I knew from that point onwards that I needed to harness the power of computer games, to deliver positive messages to African children. Given the growth of mobile phone usage and ownership across Africa the idea of computer games evolved to mobile phone games.

 

 

How effective has the Afroes’ strategy been, in achieving its set goals and what successes have you recorded in recent times?

The Afroes strategy has had to be very adaptable to the changing times, technology and issues that affect African youth. At our core ,our main goal has been to inspire and empower young Africans with 21st Century skills, which will help them transform their lives and the lives of people in their communities.

We have set out to build partnerships with like-minded organisations that see mobile phone technology as a medium to change mindsets and positively impact young Africans. In the last 3 years we have been lucky enough to receive the following awards:

  • Winner of PeaceApp – promote digital games and gamified apps as venues for cultural dialogue and conflict management, 2014;
  • Winner, Gender Mainstreaming Awards, Empowerment Initiatives, South Africa, 2014;
  • Winner, ICT Innovation Award for Gender Youth and Vulnerable Groups, Kenya, 2014;

To date we have had over 800,000 users download our games and 100,000s more through offline activations.

 

Our core our main goal has been to inspire and empower young Africans with 21st Century skills Click To Tweet

 

 

What challenges have you faced in the course of running your business and how have you been able to walk through them?

Sustainable financing has been a major challenge. We have been lucky enough to have our games fully funded by our project partners, but this has been quite limiting. Another challenge we have had is convincing programme/ solution stakeholders to adopt an alternative media/ mediums, strategy and methodology to reach and engage their traditional intended audience; as well as appeal to a new demographic of social issue based content advocates, stakeholders and consumers.

 

How important is technology for Africa’s future and how well has the African market tapped into it?

Technology is important on a global scale. What is more important for Africa is appropriate technology to enable sustainable growth and livelihood development for all. The African markets have not only tapped into the technology, but are leading the charge in technological innovation.

From Mpesa (mobile money), to the use of drones to transfer essential goods. Recent statistics have showed that 2/3 of young people own a smart phone, giving them access to a world of information, allowing them to tap into new ideas and adapting it for themselves.

 

Technology is important on a global scale Click To Tweet

 

If you had to binge watch any movie series, which would it be?

The Wire – because it’s on my watch list but I’ve never watched it.

 

 

Tell us about the Job Hunt game launching soon and the concept behind it

JobHunt is a mobile game designed to simulate the online/ digital work experience. The concept of this game is to create awareness on digital jobs and the opportunities to earn an income for young people. In the game you bid for jobs, improve skills and ultimately build the skills required to win jobs in this space.

 

What is the greatest lesson you’ve learnt on your entrepreneurial journey so far and how has it helped you in the course of your work at Afroes?

Being an entrepreneur is not an easy life, very often you need to be motivated even when things may not be working in your favour.

There is this image of a man digging in a cave with a huge diamond just a few digs away. He has to choose whether or not to keep digging, not knowing if he has reached the diamond or not.

This for me sums up the life and motivation of an entrepreneur and my journey with Afroes – if you believe in your product, your idea your company you have to keep digging to find that diamond. So we must keep digging.

 

What the next step for Afroes in another five years?

Over the last year we have been redeveloping the Afroes strategy. We have streamlined our strategy to enhance the current games catalogue and from our research we have decided to target specific areas that affect African Youth, such as Jobs and Health.

 

 

What one quote resonates with what Afroes represents?

“The future of Africa lies not with external actors but within Africa itself. The future of Africa lies here in Africa.” I strongly believe in Africa and the power of her people to make a difference in our lives.

For too long solutions to our problems have been sought from outside, but we have the solutions. Afroes is playing our part by producing games and stories on mobile devices that speak to Africans, which represents Africans and that can ultimately transform Africa.

 

The future of Africa lies not with external actors but within Africa itself. The future of Africa lies here in Africa Click To Tweet
Are you in the mobile technology business?

If you’d like to share your story, let us know more here.

Just Omomo Ibe: Rule as a Boss, Rock like a Mum, Slay as a Wife

Business strategist and work- life balance expert, Just Omomo Ibe, is helping women create a balance between their work and personal life, so they can chase their dreams and make money while at it. She also helps individuals identify the various opportunities in their business to make more profit.

Just Omomo Ibe has been in the banking sector for over seven years and is the founder of  The Just Ibe Network; thus living her dreams while been an employee. She is involved in speaking engagements, coaching calls, online courses and business consulting for SME’s.

Recently, she launched a Youtube show which focuses on motivation and strategies from experts in various fields, the channel is aimed at further helping her target market achieve success in their life and business.

 

It's an act of self sabotage to neglect your dreams because you have a job Click To Tweet

Tell us about The Just Ibe Network

The Just Ibe Network is a group of company that comprises our consulting firm, training and mentorship platform, it also includes an online training academy and media arm. At The Just Ibe Network we pride ourselves in delivering superior quality trainings, coaching and consulting for our esteemed clients both offline and online.

What market research did you carry out in the course of starting your business, and how did you go about it?

 

The first research was that of my competitors, I needed to find out what my competitors were offering and what gap they are not filling. This helped me make informed decisions as to how best to penetrate the market. A lot of businesses offer homogeneous products, therefore market research helps you understand how best to position your business in a way that not only meets the needs of your consumers but also positions your business as authentic.

Innovation keeps you in the business long after your competitors have gone Click To Tweet

What challenges have you faced so far in the setup of your business?

The greatest challenge I faced in setting up my business was creating time to actually execute my plans; creating and fine tuning strategies that would keep me relevant in the market place today and always. Innovation keeps you in business long after your competitors have gone, so you must constantly innovate.

What are your launch plans once your business registration is completed?

Honestly a business registration isn’t stopping any major launch of my business, as all facets of my businesses are in full gear at the moment. The registration  would just allow me operate a corporate account in the designated banks. So my take is it doesn’t matter if your business name is ready or not, keep adding value to your ideal clients and grow your business regardless.
It doesn't matter if your business name is ready or not; keep adding value to your ideal clients and growing your business Click To Tweet

What inspired the book ‘Rule as a Boss, Rock like a Mum and Slay as a Wife?

Rule as a Boss, Rock as a Mum, Slay as a Wife is a book dedicated to helping women create a work life- balance.
Last year I started my career in public speaking, leveraging on several online platforms and offline avenues, despite been a full time banker, wife and mum.
So people started asking me how I was doing all I was doing, so conveniently. I started documenting steps I have taken that helped me overcome my otherwise very tight schedule and results I achieved. This book is aimed at providing practical steps that can help women fully integrate all aspects of their lives, thus living a balanced and fulfilled life.

 What kind of investors and partnerships are necessary for your kind of business and what strategies are useful in achieving this?

Media investors are required for the talk show arm of my business, which is targeted at providing strategies that would help entrepreneurs succeed and grow in business. Corporate investors also play a major role, especially companies who have CSR projects, ours can successfully pass as a CSR project aimed at helping young and budding entrepreneurs.

Who is the one person from anywhere on the globe, you would love to interview and why?

 

The one person I would love to interview is President Barack Obama. He is the one person I look up to the most, because he is probably about the best public speaker that exists in this day and age.
If you can think it you can definitely birth it Click To Tweet

What quote resonates with your business and how does it inspire you?

We at The Just Ibe Network live by this mantra: if you can think it you can definitely birth it. So dear corporate ladies, your dreams are valid, they are your dreams for a reason, it’s an act of self sabotage to neglect your dreams because you have a job; the world needs you to live to the fullest.

Have you mastered the art of work-life balance?

Share your story, let us know more about you and your story here.


Twitter Chat with Shade Ladipo: How consistent career development helped me become a better leader (Aug. 9)

In case you missed this Twitter chat, see the oh- so-good moments below!

Have you ever thought of starting a management company and growing it into a profitable business? Or becoming that Motherland Mogul in management with a six digit salary?

If you think it, act on it!

As young African women, you need to equip yourselves, plan for your future, and prepare to scale up that ladder of success, even when you’re starting from the bottom.

Join us on Wednesday, Aug. 9th for a Twitter chat with travel/media entrepreneur & the country director for WEConnect International  – Shade Ladipo, as she enlightens young African women interested in management, on how consistent career development has helped her grow and become a better leader.

Shade who founded a destination management company from nothing at age 25, believes that education and career development is the most important driving force for every aspiring Motherland Mogul.

Follow She Leads Africa on twitter and use the hashtag #SLAChats to ask your questions and participate in the discussion.

Topics that we’ll cover:

  • Why women in management need education and career development
  • Gender bias, feminism and gender roles in today’s society
  • 5 reasons why consistent career development is critical to leadership

Twitter chat details

  • Date:  Wednesday 9th August
  • Time: 12 pm NYC // 5 pm Lagos // 6 pm Joburg
  • Location: Follow She Leads Africa on twitter and use the hashtag #SLAChats

Here are some moments from the chat:

 

About Shade

Shade Ladipo is the Executive Director of WEConnect International  , a travel and media entrepreneur and a social activist.

At the age of 25, Shade founded Avienti Limited – a Destination Management company with three offices in Nigeria. She has also worked with the United Nations Volunteers Nigeria and several advertising agencies where she specialized in event management, account management, and client services and strategy.

Shade has been recognized by several platforms for her work as a change agent and businesswoman. She has been nominated for the Future Awards Africa Awards, chosen as 101 Young Achievers at the African Business Forum in Accra Ghana in 2008, and selected as a Goldman Sachs fellow.

Shade regularly appears on radio programs and at live events to talk about everything she is passionate about, including leading a successful business in Nigeria.

Zizipho Dyubeni: I understood the struggle of having inconsistent income

Zizipho Dyubeni
Zizipho Dyubeni is behind an agency built on the premise of heightening the voice of creative Africa Click To Tweet

Zizipho Dyubeni is a communications specialist and entrepreneur from Cape Town, South Africa. She uses her creativity to promote and uplift fellow entrepreneurs in the township areas where she grew up. Through her company Blue Apple Concepts, Zizipho curates and organises bespoke events aimed at entertaining and empowering the youth, especially those interested in entrepreneurship.

One such event is the popular GlamHour, which serves as a platform for fledgling entrepreneurs in the beauty industry to showcase their work, network and gain new clients. The events also offer pampering massage sessions, facials, nail therapy and fresh delicacies for women who want to unwind in style- a rare and novel treat to the township areas of Khayelitsha. Then there’s the Lingerie Fair, aimed at encouraging young women from disadvantaged areas to openly talk about sex and practice healthy lifestyles.

Apart from the pioneering strides, she’s made in the entertainment industry, Zizipho is also a speaker, entrepreneur, event coordinator, concept developer, a freelance communications specialist, content producer and a much-loved radio personality for 2OceansVibe, an online streaming radio station.

Being such an inspiration, we just had to share her amazing story with you, our SLAy community, and find out what makes this ambitious creative tick.


Tell us about yourself. Who is Zizipho Dyubeni?

I am a young 27-year-old mom to 8-year-old Storm. I grew up in Milnerton where I went to high school. With a passionate love for all things creative, I furthered my studies at the University of the Western Cape where I later dropped out due to financial constraints.

Fast forward nearly 8 years later I have created a creative agency built on the premise of heightening the voice of creative Africa, work in media. I enjoy a life wonderous and eventful! I am also an events coordinator with a specific interest in women related lifestyle eventing.

What inspired you to start BlueAppleEye Concepts and where do you get the inspiration for all these innovative event concepts that you’ve come up with?

I was and still am a freelancer, I understood the struggle and pain of having inconsistent income.

The main idea behind the Creative Corner is to regulate work activity for creative freelancers and in doing so creating a solid creative e-commerce.

What challenges have you had to overcome on your journey in the entertainment and communications industries?

I would be lying if I said I have overcome a lot of the challenges, the creative industry is one that requires resilience. Right now our biggest struggle is merging business rationale with the creative concept.

Tell us about your other creative and business pursuits…

I am an influencer, MC, vocalist and radio DJ outside of running a small business.

Zizipho Dyubeni: The creative industry is one that requires resilience Click To Tweet

How do you manage to remain focused and disciplined to keep up with such a packed schedule?

My work does not feel like work. I am passionately living out my dream every day, on hard days I cry and pray. My family, friends and business partner keep me grounded.

What are your plans for the future?

For my business to grow into the biggest service agent in Africa housing plus 200 000 or more freelancers with sufficient work monthly.

That is the biggest dream.

My work does not feel like work. I am passionately living out my dream every day Click To Tweet

What do you do for fun and relaxation?

I party, read, listen to jazz and spend time with my loved ones.

What are the 4 skills you had to learn/use when entering the entertainment and communications industries?

  1. Listening
  2. Collaborating
  3. Paying attention to detail
  4. Concept development

If you’d like to share your story with She Leads Africa, let us know more about you and your story here

Writing cover letters for jobs in media or communications

Remember, it's not about you, it's about what you can do for them Click To Tweet

The media industry is a very cutthroat place driven by extreme timelines and deadlines. That being said, most media professionals will not have time to read through pages of a cover letter explaining every single job you have ever had or what clubs you chaired in high school. They simply want to know these five things:

  1. Who are you?
  2. Why should we hire you?
  3. What do you know about us as an organization/company/institution/publication?
  4. What sets you apart from the rest?
  5. How do we find you?

Put all this in a cover letter and you’re on your way to getting that interview call back you are hoping for. How to go about this though, is where most of us get it wrong. The world changes every day with each passing day, hour, minute and second, therefore it is imperative to keep up with the constant changes going on.

What worked as a cover letter say 5/6 years ago, is definitely not the case today in 2017. Check out the dos and don’ts below which I hope will be a quick guide to writing a great cover letter.

DO: Start off with a very intriguing first sentence

The media/comms industry is all about being creative and thinking of different angles to put points across. Do not just say, “I’m applying for this position because I really need a job and I feel this would be it”… Let’s avoid the tired cliches, shall we?

Start with what you know, which is your field, where you saw this vacancy and that you are interested in the position. This, first of all, gives them an assurance that their ads are being seen. Secondly, it tells them you know you fit the description by saying what you do already and lets them avoid wasting time reading the entire letter only to find out you don’t even know what you are applying for.

DON’T: Start writing out a detailed description of your resume or LinkedIn profile

By the time an editor, HR officer or head of department is receiving your cover letter, he/she has already looked at your resume. Do not waste time filling cover letters with repetitive content.

DO: Tailor your cover letter to the job description

Generic cover letters are a lazy way of applying for a job and they can be sniffed out from a mile away. A good example during my time working at an NGO, I was tasked with the job of going through various applications that had come in and had to cut them down to at least seven from 30 files.

Out of the 30, half the group had exactly the same cover letter, copied and pasted from a popular career website, just different names and sent on different dates. That saved me a lot of time in terms of evaluation but it cost those candidates a job because they did not bother to actually write a detailed cover letter.

Answer the questions they are asking by saying exactly how you fit the job requirements and you can provide one or two examples of what you have done in relation to the position.

Applying for a job in media/communications? Here are tips to write a stellar cover letter Click To Tweet

DON’T: Go overboard with selling yourself

Remember, it’s not about you, it’s about what you can do for them. Focus on that. Don’t talk so much about where you went to school, or the accolades you achieved. In this industry particularly, your honours, summa cum laude nod, distinction… aren’t prioritized as much.

Someone with a Ph.D. can just as easily be outshone by a freshly graduated senior from college, it all boils down to efficiency, skill and how badly you want this job. Show them you are worth the investment, don’t tell them what they could have easily looked up on Google.

DO: Your research

Find out all you can about the place you are applying to. Talk to them about their visions, their values, their goals. Show them how adding you to their team will contribute to bringing about even better communication campaigns or how efficient of a designer/copy writer/editor you are thus providing a fresh approach to their brand/publication/business.

Show them you know them and that you are ready to not change things around, but contribute to an already well-established organization.

DON’T: Have grammatical errors

None whatsoever. Cross all your Ts, dot all your I’s, have every comma, period and apostrophe properly placed. Proof-read your letter once you are done writing to make sure there are no typos, spelling errors etc. Have someone else check it as well to have a fresh set of eyes on it.

There have been cases where an entire application has been cast aside due to one single typo in the cover letter. This industry is very detailed in the work they do and a simple mistake such as wrong spelling or a missing piece of information can cost them millions in the long run. A cover letter with grammar mistakes shows you are not meticulous and are sloppy with your work thus a liability to the company.

DO: Be brief

I’ll reiterate the concept of time. Most people in these industries will most likely skim through these applications than actually read through them. They will look for the five things mentioned above and tick off or cross out where appropriate and move on.

Anything more than a page will not be considered at most organizations because again, no one has time to read through all that. Do be brief and concise yet include every detail you deem important to you and them on there. The art of paraphrasing comes in handy when applying to fields such as these.

A cover letter to the UN will be very different from a cover letter to a travel magazine Click To Tweet

DON’T: Forget to provide contact information

If it is not located on your CV, the cover letter is the place one shall look for a way to find you. Also, provide a period of availability (if asked) and when you can be reached. These industries do not work with your typical 9-5 schedule and may sometimes want to call you after business hours. Make sure you can be reached.

DO: Be gracious

Treat this is as a once in a lifetime opportunity and say how fortunate you would be to join such a great work place. Make them feel good as a business and show that you will do this job to your absolute best if considered. Sign off politely, prompting that you hope to hear from them soon.

DON’T: Forget to follow up

This is especially if you are applying to someone directly and not going through the HR office/automated job portal. Send a follow-up email to he/she asking if they received your application.

Give it 3-5 business days before sending the first follow up email and when you do send it, kindly ask when you are likely to hear back from them if it is not indicated on the vacancy announcement.

Now I’m no expert at all things resume/cover letter writing but these are tips I learnt in school and picked up in my time as a job seeker. My cover letter went from a generic 2-3 paragraph email to a concise, one page word document, tailored to the different positions I have applied to over the years.

A cover letter to the United Nations will be very different from a cover letter to a travel magazine or an advertising agency. Keep these tips handy and keep practicing on your writing, the more you do it, the better you get at it. I wish you all the best!

Instagram Q & A with Peace Hyde: Fighting against the odds (May 30)

Day after day, African women keep breaking boundaries and creating an impact in their respective professions.

Who says you can’t do the same?

Sometimes we might encounter a hitch during our journey, but as Motherland Moguls, we have to keep fighting against all odds and let people know that we’ve got this!

Award winning presenter and TV host Peace Hyde is contributing to the narrative of growing female power on the African continent. Through her work, she encourages young African women to be bold and break barriers to achieve their set goals.

Join us on Instagram for a Q & A session with Peace Hyde on Tuesday 30th May. Peace will be sharing her entrepreneurial journey with us, and answering all your questions about fighting against the odds.

Join @Peac_hy for an Instagram Q & A on May 30 to discuss fighting against the odds Click To Tweet

We will be giving away a FREE cheat sheet with Peace Hyde’s top 10 lessons for everyone fighting against the odds. Register below to get your copy.

Instagram Q & A Details:

Date: Tuesday May 30th 2017

Time: 1pm Lagos// 2pm Joburg// 3pm Nairobi

Where: https://www.instagram.com/sheleadsafrica/

About Peace

Peace Hyde is the Forbes West Africa Correspondent. She is most widely known for her role as host of the flagship Forbes Africa TV show, “My Worst Day with Peace Hyde”.

Some of the guests on the show to date included Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote and second richest woman in Africa, Folorunsho Alakija and many more.

Peace is scheduled to launch a new show “Against the Odds” which will feature appearances from prolific African women who are recognised for their accomplishments in business or career.

How to use media platforms to grow your business

Build your public presence and reach new customers with these tips Click To Tweet

Public relations can be used to protect, enhance or build reputations through the media. The world of business is characterised by fierce competition.

In order to win new customers and retain the existing ones, companies not only have to distinguish themselves from the competition but must also create and maintain a positive public image which helps create a strong relationship with the customers and in turn increases the sales.

How to build your public presence

All you have to do is let others know you exist and that you are an expert source of information or advice about your industry. Being regarded as an industry expert can do wonders for your business.

These six steps will be useful;

  1. Start by making sure you know everything you can about your business, product, and industry.
  2. Talk to as many groups as possible such as with public speaking engagements. Do it free of charge, of course, and keep it fun, interesting and timely.
  3. Contact industry trade publications and volunteer to write articles, columns or opinion pieces.
    Offer seminars or demonstrations related to your business. For example, a travel agency may recommend the best and safest destinations for the Christmas holidays.
  4. Host or appear as a regular guest or contributor to a local radio or TV talk show.
  5. Capitalise in well-run platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram where you can post about your current specials, discounts and new products around the clock.
  6. Preparing media or press kits

Effective publicists have great relationships with many different journalists in many different industries. Keep ready-made kits at hand for the media. Your kit could include executive profiles, quick facts about your organization, such as its company history, photographs, detailed product descriptions; even samples and business cards.

How to prepare a pitch to the media for publication

If you’d like media platforms to cover the work the work you do, you’ll need to first pitch to the media. These steps should come in handy.

  1. Write your positioning statement. This sums up in a few sentences what makes your business different from the competition and what your Unique selling point (USP) is.
  2. List your objectives. What do you hope to achieve for your company through the publicity plan you put into action? List your top five goals in order of priority and be specific and set timelines.
  3. Identify your target customers. Are they male or female? What age range? What are their lifestyles, incomes and buying habits? Where do they live?
  4. Identify your target media. List the newspapers and TV and radio programs in your area that would be appropriate outlets. Make a complete list of the media you want to target, then call them and ask whom you should contact regarding your area of business.
  5. Develop story angles. Keeping in mind the media you’re approaching, make a list of story ideas you can pitch to them. Develop story angles you would want to read about or see on TV. Brainstorm ideas for example, if you own a clothing store, one angle could be to donate clothes to the local women’s shelter.
  6. Make the pitch. Put your thoughts on paper, and send them to the reporter in a “pitch letter.” Make the letter short and include your contact details so the reporter can contact you.
  7. Following up is the key to securing coverage. Wait a few days then follow up your pitch letter with a telephone call. Always be courteous when speaking to journalists bearing in mind that they are busy individuals.
  8. Send a thank you note to the reporter after the publication of your story.

Khumo Kgwaadira: Sometimes I fall, I rise up, fall and rise up again

I don’t sleep. I see the need to put in work and take advantage of my position. Click To Tweet

Khumo Kgwaadira is an entrepreneur, radio presenter, a sought-after host, fashion designer and #MotherlandMogul in Botswana. Having studied IT in Malaysia, she still managed to dominate the entertainment industry working for Radio Botswana under the RB2.

Khumo has been a television presenter on various television shows. She also runs a community organization called WHO AM I which is helping young individuals self-actualize and realize their true potential.


What would you say led you to radio and entertainment?

It is something that has always been in my heart. As a little girl I used to love watching television and imitating presenters as they did their job. I would always tell my parents and sisters that one day I would be a superstar…they thought I was kidding.

As for radio, it’s a thought that came to mind while I was in college. When I have an idea I write it down and revisit all my ideas time and again but funny enough the radio idea, I put it on social media. I updated my twitter profile in college and wrote: student, upcoming radio presenter. I don’t know why I did but that was the beginning of my journey.

Can you tell us more about your brand as a radio host and what challenges you faced?

I work at RB2 FM and have worked there since October 2013. I currently host the breakfast show called Breakfast n’ Bold with T.H.A.B.O Weekdays 6-9 a.m. On Fridays, I read the 3pm news bulletin and on Saturday I host the TOP40 with Zandile Bawe.

Radio is one of the highlights of my life and working for a national radio station truly is a blessing. I have learnt to connect to a wide listenership of different cultures, races and backgrounds. I have learnt to grow up funny enough, to be mature, to invest in my craft through reading, and to be better every single day. Also, I have had to overcome not letting the noise from outside shift my focus.

Radio is one of the highlights of my life @MissGeeKays Click To Tweet

 

What four skills have you found yourself using/learning frequently since starting in the business?

  1. Patience: I am the least patient person in the world I must confess but working with a team has helped me understand that not everyone is like me. More than that not everything or everyone will work as hard as I do so I leaned into being enduring with the people around me.
  2. Focus: I believe this is the greatest weapon everyone should have. Sometimes I fall, I rise up , fall and rise up again, I am learning every day to focus on what is important. This entertainment industry is unkind, complicated and harsh…focus is what has gotten me through.
  3. Hard work: I don’t sleep. I see the need to put in work and take advantage of my position in the industry because in the next 3 years there will someone better and more relevant in the industry.
  4. Commitment: I have learnt this early on in college, to stay committed to my work because I know for sure at the end of the day I will be reaping the rewards of the work I put in.

What challenges have you faced working in a male-dominated industry and also being on television?

Unfortunately, people take you for granted thinking you cannot deliver, that is the nature of the game.

I have had to constantly prove myself that I can actually deliver. That has been and still is one of the challenges I face.

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You expanded recently to clothing with Faddic, what inspired that and what do you hope to achieve?

My love for fashion started in college after I was exposed to the Asian fashion scene. The lifestyle in Asia is completely different from what we see in Botswana. I was especially drawn to Malaysia which is so diverse and the fusion of different cultures sparked my interest.

I am one person who is always interested in knowing more, I gravitated towards fashion and being chic. I said to myself that one day when I am a powerhouse I would have my own fashion label and it would really be cool to have people wear “ME”.. and I didn’t want do it alone. I waited for the right time and One Motlhabane was the right person to work with together and our collaboration is black girl magic MISSGEEKAYSxFADDIC.

We hope to change the fashion industry in Africa and take it by storm.

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What led you to start WHO AM I and what do you want to accomplish through it?

This came from a tough place. A place of pain.. a place of self-doubt. It got to a point and a time in my life where I felt there was no reason to live. The stigma and insecurity was overwhelming.

One evening in 2011 I wrote a proposal down and titled it WHO AM I and prayed about. I asked God to guide me and help me launch a powerful movement that will tackle issues of “self”. In 2015 we launched and now WHO AM I is changing the lives of many in a positive way. I’m thrilled to be part of that movement.

How would you advice someone who looks up to you?

Love and believe in yourself a little bit more.

I don’t believe in regrets …instead what I draw from that is my biggest achievement, living my dream Click To Tweet

Do you have any regrets?

I don’t believe in regrets …instead what I draw from that is my biggest achievement, living my dream. Everything I am doing now is what I have always wanted to do since I was young.


If you’d like to share your story with She Leads Africa, let us know more about you and your story here

How to land the media job you want: Tips from Isis Nyong’o Madison

isis nyong'o madison media leader
Get inspired and land the media job you want with lessons straight from Isis Nyong'o Madison Click To Tweet

Isis Nyong’o Madison is a well-known media and technology leader in Africa. She has held leadership roles at Asphalt & Ink, InMobi, Google and MTV. Over the past decade, she has made her mark scaling media and digital businesses across the continent. Isis holds degrees from Stanford University and Harvard Business School and is the CEO and Co-founder of Mums Village  an online start-up dedicated to enriching the lives of current mothers and mums-to-be in urban Kenya.

Accolades awarded to her include being named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and one of Africa’s most Powerful Women by Forbes. Isis serves on the boards of two technology companies and it can’t hurt to add that her family boasts of greatness with Academy award winning actress, Lupita Nyong’o as her cousin.

As someone with great experience in media and technology – all the while ensuring career longevity, below are some takeaways we can learn from her as she tells us how she got to where she is now.

Network, network, network and be persistent

“I networked incredibly hard to get into MTV in 2005. They were just getting ready to launch in Africa right as I was graduating from Harvard Business School -I was very excited about media at the time and absolutely obsessed with working there. I didn’t know if they had any vacancies but I did everything I possibly could to find myself space there as it was logical to me that they would need to put a team together.

The person leading the MTV Africa venture was Nigerian so I reached into my network asking every single Nigerian I knew if they knew this guy. None of them did but with more digging I got the phone numbers I needed that finally connected me to him. This took about six months to get to him and get him to hire me as their first sales person.

Today, I wouldn’t recommend spamming a potential employer with too many emails and cold calling them but you should do your best to get noticed. For example, attend events that they host, engage with them online and meet employees to better understand what it’s like to work there. Never give up on something that you feel is right for you but also use your judgement on optimal approach.”

Some key points to help with landing the job you want:

1. Network

Again, this is very important and is a skill that young people should have. There are more forums to network nowadays and a lot of networking opportunities as well.

The reality, particularly here in Kenya, is that people feel like only certain people get jobs because they have access to certain networks. There is some truth to that but not to say that one cannot build their own networks no matter where you are starting from. Your networks don’t just happen to you, you build on your alumni institution, your church, and many other avenues. That’s something I became very good at over time and it’s something that is important not just for jobs but for business in general.

The importance of your network in landing the job you want in the media is very real Click To Tweet
2. Throw your hat in the ring

When applying for jobs in big companies, I think there’s a view that you can’t just apply on their website and expect your CV to be reviewed. I applied to Google at a time when they had 1,000 people at least applying per week and every single CV was screened.

Also, particularly for women, there’s a lot of research that shows that women will go through an entire list of requirements and if they do not have one of those things that the company is looking for, they won’t apply. Yet men tend to apply regardless of meeting all the requirements or not. I think that women definitely need to have a much more controlled view of this and apply for the job they want despite missing one or two requirements. The only way to ensure you don’t get a job is to not apply.

3. Preparation matters – a lot.

Ensure you have an engaging, updated LinkedIn profile as that is where your professional visibility matters and be mindful of everything you put online. Typos in CV’s and any other communications are inexcusable and reflect a cavalier attitude which makes it easy for employers to pass on.

When you reach the interview stage, do thorough research in preparation for it. You can never over prepare -you should definitely never walk into an interview unprepared as you’ll be wasting everyone’s time including your own. Understand what the role is, what you think they’re looking for, what questions they are likely to ask you, what questions you’ll ask them and find out what’s happening in that industry that you want to join. There’s no excuse not to be prepared.

How to ensure career longevity

“If one finds their life passion, it becomes much easier to have career longevity. Things fall into place when you find your passion. There’s always more you want to do and there’s more opportunities that find their way back to you.

If one finds their life passion, it becomes much easier to have career longevity Click To Tweet

For those who are unfortunately stuck in a career path that’s not for them, make it a mission to find a way to get out of that situation instead of trying to create a long-term career.”

Finally, what matters more between education and experience? It depends on the individual

“Education and experience are both very important and I do think that I vacillate myself on whether one matters more than the other. A good education gives you a foundation to build knowledge, working in teams, critical thinking skills and the discipline of simply showing up. There’s a lot of things that matter later in life that showing up at school, participating, learning, doing homework, doing all these again and again and again assists…all of this matters a lot during our career.

“I have interacted with ‘seasoned’ professionals who have 10 years of experience in a field but if you can’t problem solve and only do the things that you’ve been trained to do, then it’s hard to get to the next level. So you can see why it may just depend on the individual on which one is better but I’m an advocate for both of them.”