Unoma Okorafor: Invest in self-development. I have never met a great leader who is not a reader.

unoma okorafor

It is not easy being a successful, black woman but you appear to have mastered the art beautifully and gracefully.

What do you think has been the key to your success? How are you able to find balance in your daily life and juggle the many commitments you have on your plate?

It is a daily commitment to find balance but it all starts with setting boundaries and prioritizing what is important. For me I lose balance if I do not prioritize three key areas of my life which are; my spiritual life (I must find time to connect with God, meditate and attend church), my family life (I need to spend quality time with my husband and be engaged in my children’s’ lives) and find down time to relax (maybe visit friends, go on vacation, read a book, exercise, practice yoga or visit a fun place).

For me once these three core things are in balance, I seem to be able to manage all the others. I have also been blessed to work with super amazing teams who do a lot in the background and are not getting credit for it. I am learning to recruit reliable people and put systems in place that allow me to delegate responsibility. Technology and automation also helps to keep me organized. Ultimately, however, because I am balancing a lot, there are many things I have to say no to or accept that they will not be done perfectly. It’s always give and take.

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If you could leave the readers with one key piece of advice to motivate them to take on more challenges and aspire to greater heights what would that advice be?

I would advise readers to delete the words from our vocabulary that stop us from daring to take the next step such as “too busy”, “too tired” or whatever your excuse is. I believe the universe conspires to help us once we decide to focus on accomplishing something. So, I would advise readers to dare greatly and ask the question “How can I?” rather than saying “I can’t”.

Another important piece of advice is to get a mentor and read more books. Invest in self-development. I have never met a great leader who is not a reader.

When women lead in tech, we give others the permission to step up - Unoma Okorafor Click To Tweet

On that final note, what book is currently on your nightstand?

I am a huge reader so at any point in time I am reading several books. I read a lot of self-development books and autobiographies of great men and women who have served their communities.

Two of the books I am currently reading are: Traction by Gino Wickman – I consider this the #1 book every business owner must read and re-read in order to grow their organization and Daring Greatly (How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we Live, Love, Parent and Lead) by Brene Brown.


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About Uloma Ogba

Uloma Ogba is the Founder and CEO of Launch Africa, offering tailored career advice and mentoring to individuals seeking opportunities in the International Development sector. She is also the author of the highly rated “30-Day Guide to Landing your Dream Job in International Development”. She is currently working her dream job as Program Coordinator with the United Nations in Rwanda, focused on implementing the organization's digital strategy to improve financial inclusion. Previously she worked as an Analyst for PharmAccess, a global health nonprofit in the Netherlands, with brief stints in Kenya and Nigeria. Committed to the development of women and girls across the globe, Uloma cofounded the Nigerian nonprofit, Give Girls A Chance, which is dedicated to improving access to quality education for Nigerian girls. Her interests include blogging, reading and traveling.

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