Annually, March 8 is set aside as International Women’s Day (IWD) to recognise the social, economic, cultural, political, and groundbreaking milestones of women across the world.
The day also marks a call for unity, celebration, reflection, advocacy and action with the theme “Chose to Challenge”. It focuses on the need for us all to choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality.
To commemorate this global celebration, Elvaridah, a business development and consulting company focused on providing strategies and solutions to businesses of all sizes, embarked on a campaign tagged #ElvaridahIWDSpotlight to recognise five resilient and tenacious women.
These women include Dr Abimbola Banu-Ogundere, a renowned Educator and Founder of Kids’ Court School, a world-class elementary school in Lagos state; Eno Essien, Founder of Rheytrak Limited, a vehicle tracking and recovery company licensed by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
Others are: Olori Boye-Ajayi is an Export Trading Consultant and President of the Borderless Trade Network.
Abimbola Adebakin is the Founder of Advantage Health Africa, a company rendering technology, products and services to promote access to affordable and quality healthcare across Africa through my.medicines and my.pharmacy.
Modupe Anjous is the Founder of Rydal Mews Ltd, a real estate and property management company in Lagos providing bespoke solutions to property needs.
According to Elvaridah, the women have built their businesses against all odds across different business sectors.
Speaking on the campaign, the Founder and Principal Business Consultant of Elvaridah, Nkechi Alade, “As we celebrate IWD, we are excited to recognise and honour five outstanding women in business through the #ElvaridahIWDSpotlight Campaign.”
She conceded that their doggedness and grit in building some of Nigeria’s most influential businesses is inspiring and beyond worthy of celebration.
From inception, she said, Elvaridah has been an advocate for individuals who are building their businesses from scratch.
In her perspective, the #ElvaridahIWDSpotlight women have not only built their businesses from scratch, but they have also succeeded, blazed the trail and have inspiring success stories to tell.
Meanwhile, Ogundere of Kids’ Court School frowned at the norm where the society expects that a female entrepreneur should be seen but not heard, docile, not persistent, quiet and accepting of anything that comes her way.
“If you present yourself as a go-getter, assertive and bold, you will be labelled as aggressive and disrespectful or sometimes wicked. People find it difficult to accept a woman who knows what she wants, how she wants and is not willing to settle for anything less than excellent,” Ogundere said with passion.
She also stressed to be will to start small and give it time. Imploring, “Don’t rush the process. One foot in front of the other, one day at a time with intentionality, dedication, diligence and accountability, you will surely get there.”
Hinting that challenges are everywhere in business, not just for the women, the educationist enjoined everyone to determine their response to these challenges.
“We all know that one major challenge in business –in life is the challenge of the mind,” Boye-Ajayi expressed that the mind is key to our development as humans. “So, work on your mind before you work on your business.”
“In business, the consultant outlined, dream and dream very big and believe in yourself. Start small, stay consistent and grow; one step at a time.
She further encouraged fellow women to always celebrate little successes and strides and applaud themselves, too. “Take charge of what you do, don’t let people dictate for you,” says Boye-Ajayi.
For Essien, she acknowledged that there would be hurdles, “But don’t allow the challenge to stop the vision. Remember why you started, and keep going.”
‘You are good enough. Yes, acquire new skills, hire the best you can afford, get back up whenever you trip, remain prayerful and thankful for what is on your hand and keep good words in your heart and mouth.
However, nothing beats self appreciation. Adebakin was quoted. She thought, “I think if you don’t embrace you, you drop the ball and feel unworthy of growth and opportunities that are brought to you.”
Now, Elvaridah is a business development and consulting company focused on providing strategies and solutions to businesses of all sizes.
The firm emphasised the critical matters and prospects of organisations such as business growth, strategy, planning, marketing, structure, and people management across different industries.