WHEN A CLIENT LEAVES

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The process of breaking up with a client can be hard and involve battling all kinds of emotions. I will be taking you through the 5 stages of the emotional roller coaster you may experience.

Stage 1 – Denial

“Nah it can’t be, we just had lunch with Demola the brand manager and we were brainstorming on how to launch their latest product. Demola would have told me if this was going to happen. I’m sure it’s a rumour or somebody is just having a bad day. Let me fix a meeting, there’s nothing a good meeting can’t solve.” At this stage, we can’t accept it especially when we never “experred it”

Stage 2 – Anger

“They will regret it, who else in this Nigeria can answer briefs in less than 2 hours. So Chinyere is telling me she couldn’t fight for us after we have saved her sorry ass time and time again. The same complexion that got her a job could not keep our own.  I’m sure she was in on it, pretending she was not in support. What kind of pot of beans life is this?” This is the point where you’re angry and almost losing every sense of reason.

Stage 3 – Bargaining

“Let’s send a proposal to the client, I’m sure once they see how creative we are they will stay. Talk to their procurement guy about some discounts we have been able to bag them recently. Tell Saheed to give us a month to prove ourselves, we will also have one of our staff stationed in their office so we are constantly at their beck and call.”  When you are at this point, be careful not to sell your future out of desperation.

Stage 4 – Depression

“We have to cancel the office renovation we planned, I guess we will be stuck with this sad ambience for the rest of our lives”. I don’t feel well, tell the staff I will be leaving early today. In fact, everyone can leave early today. What’s the point working so hard when they will just leave eventually” The office playlist begins to feature tracks like “When you are gone”, “How am I supposed to live without you”, “Here without you” and every other heartbreak song you can muster. This is the point where reality sets in and you have to think of your next move rather than wallow in the “what ifs?”

Stage 5 – Acceptance

“It’s going to be fine, we win some and we lose some.” You start getting ready for the next client while making sure the current ones are kept happy. You are a fighter, you have survived this long and will continue to survive.

My Boss Happened To Me

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I started out with lots of energy and enthusiasm. As boring as the JD (Job Description) sounded on paper – Admin/PA – the job was challenging and filled with opportunities to grow beyond the current role into a career path I truly wanted – Marketing Communications. My colleagues were bright and dynamic young people with tons of ideas and we could discuss anything and see it come alive. It felt like an enchanting fairytale that held new and exciting surprises for me. I looked forward to our Monday meetings, as they were always fun and engaging.

For someone who had never worked as a PA, with very little administrative skills, I was doing amazingly well (Google was, and still is, my best friend). My boss was a public figure, so my work extended beyond the office. She was involved in speaking engagements, radio and TV shows, and I loved the fact that I could move around. She was hardworking, passionate about her career, could juggle a million things at once (ok, that’s exaggerating it) and I really admired her work ethic. She always said that a woman’s life was all about balance and being able to connect her world in a way that allowed her to find both peace and sanity in it.

Soon, I began to have more responsibilities and I took each one head-on, loving the challenges buried in each of them and being able to find solutions. With each new challenge, my boss would say, “There’s nothing you can’t do if you put your mind into it.” I became a Project Manager overseeing a new office site, a part-time accountant and then moved to my favourite area, Content.

Fast-forward a couple of months later, the marketing team seemed to have hit a roadblock as to how to carry out a certain campaign. My boss wanted fresh perspectives and asked if I wanted to assist the marketing team. We all sat, brainstormed ideas and found new ways to tackle the plan. It felt exciting, fulfilling. The brainstorming sessions made me feel alive. Something in me was awakened; even my colleagues seemed to notice too.  Over time, I started getting more involved in regular brainstorming sessions and client meetings. My interest was piqued as I reviewed content and actively participated in strategy sessions. Soon, I approached the company to review my JD to marketing. Sadly, I couldn’t at the time because there was no vacancy in the marketing department, but I was given liberty to stay involved with them.

One fateful day, one of my colleagues, Tunde, approached me and asked if I had ever considered a career in marketing communications. Of course!  I had always wanted to but didn’t know where to begin. He told me about Orange Academy and I got very interested.

I signed up for Orange Academy and discovered a world of possibilities, and I was introduced to the world of digital marketing. Digital marketing gave me an entirely different perspective in the world of communications and its ability to reach millions with a few words or images. Armed with this insight, I made a decision to pursue it head on.  I spoke with my boss and told her of my plans. She had mixed feelings but was happy I had found something I was truly passionate about, based on our frequent discussions.  I resigned from that job and began my journey into Digital marketing.

Even though I started my career in a field I knew very little about, working with her helped me discover and focus on what I truly love to do. I had thought I had my entire life figured out, but when my employer happened to me and challenged my abilities, it changed me forever.

If you’re stuck in a role that seems completely unrelated to your passion or talent, don’t be discouraged! Just stay focused and keep working hard; you never know what life-changing opportunities may come your way. *wink!

Imo Happened To Me

 

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If you’re a nine-to-fiver, you know that salary is never enough.

To effectively make the best of your salary – and still get the things you need, and still afford the things you want – is almost impossible. I learned this the hard way.

I was posted to Imo state for my youth service, despite plans to stay in Abuja – where I would have had maximum comfort, right down to having a driver take me wherever I needed to go. However, knowing that the comfort zone does not breed success, I was determined to make it work: I moved to Imo and embraced the challenge.

It took me ages to find a house; the agents seemed determined to drain the life out of me. With N2,500 per agent to look at one or two houses only, and with all the agents showing me the same houses over and over again, the costs quickly piled up. It didn’t seem like much at first until I’d paid like 10 agents! But I finally found a house.

I had roommates, learned how to live with people and learned tolerance. I saw suffering in the rural areas, away from my “perfect Abuja”. I saw people struggle to live from hand to mouth. I got better at standing up for myself, and my empathy threshold increased. Life is not perfect; people enjoy, people suffer, but we all find ways to make our situations work.

Imo was a real learning experience: I learned to survive with N19,800 only. Because of my time there, I’m better at planning my expenses, living alone, standing up for myself, relating with colleagues and more. Imo prepared me for a 9-5, and for the constant struggle of never having enough money. It taught me that things won’t always be perfect and situations may not be ideal, but we can rise above it, learn and evolve into better people.

Thank you Imo.