On the 30th December 2012, Jennifer Oyelade featured in This Day Newspaper, one of Nigeria’s distinguished National Newspapers.
Born and bred in London, the United Kingdom, Mrs. Jennifer Oyelade, who is originally from Onitsha, Anambra State, is a young woman who is making a difference. With the belief that to be at one’s happiest, one needs to do something one enjoys, Oyelade, who is the Managing Director of Transquisite Consulting, a Recruitment, Training and Business Consultancy, tells OLAOLU OLUSINA the driving force behind her career path, her motivation for returning home and the difference she intends to make, among other things. Excerpts
Can you give us a brief introduction of yourself and what you do?
Originally from Onitsha, but born and bred in London, United Kingdom I am the Managing Director of a Recruitment, Training and Business Consultancy called Transquisite Consulting.
Transquisite Consulting is a Business and Recruitment Consultancy that provides three core services. To provide a comprehensive Recruitment Service focusing on identifying specialists locally and also in the diaspora, assisting start-ups and SME Business in maximising their presence in their industries, generate revenue and guarantee their Return in Investment.
Thirdly we are a Training Establishment offering generalist and specialist courses in personal development and Industry related modules.
What would you consider as the driving force behind your career path?
My career reflects my character, I am a people person, and like interacting with people from all cultures, and backgrounds because you learn so much and it makes you a rounded individual. I strongly believe that to be at your happiest, you need to do something you enjoy, so work doesn’t feel like a chore, or a means to an end but a passion. I wanted to get into an industry that sees the growth of an individual which also results into the growth of businesses because people make businesses successful
What informed your decision to return back home and how are you coping with the challenges here?
Living in the diaspora all my life, I never considered it as home because I am a Nigerian first and foremost; those values were instilled in me right from birth. So as a child I regularly visited Nigeria and took a keen interest in its’ development. Nigeria is a country that has great potential to compete with the rest of the world. Not only with our natural resources, but with the intellectual minds that this country is blessed with. If given a platform, these individuals can create a massive impact on the re-vamp of Nigeria and I aim to be a part of that.
Like every situation in life that one finds themselves in, the best thing is to adapt. There will always be challenges, but if you try to keep a positive mind that you will overcome them and turn that challenge into a personal goal it makes overcoming them so much easier. It’s not easy, but then if everything in life is easy we’d all be doing something else.
What are you doing differently and what experience are you bringing to bear on the new task here?
There are many things I do and hope to do differently depending on which context this question is asked. In Business, Transquisites’ objective is to bring something different to the Recruitment, Training and Management Consulting industry. Offering a comprehensive service where we understand the needs of our clients by building professional relationships. We listen, and not hear because there’s a difference. Listening means we understand your needs, and aim to adhere to them.
We consult which means we advise what we feel as specialists would be good for the growth of your business and source candidates that we feel will be best suited to do the job.
We are a team that is mixed with those from the diaspora and also home grown talent so working together we are able to implement the processes that work in the diaspora and incorporate them into the Nigerian system effectively.
In regards to Training, we offer the unemployed a platform to acquire additional skills to make them more attractive to employers. Businesses can also benefit from our industry tailored courses taught by our Trainers in the diaspora, this reduces the cost of sending their employees abroad and still receiving an internationally recognised qualification.
We are also big believers of Entrepreneurship and offer courses to those who which to start up their own SME. Developing SME’s is the way forward, there are so many talented individuals who have a lot to offer but do not have a platform to stand on. Organisations of this size are closer to their consumers. They can easily identify what is in demand and supply; you’ll find that these type of businesses break-even very quickly because they are investing in a clear case of supply and demand.
Could you share with us some of your most challenging experience so far and how have they influenced your decision to forge ahead?
Venturing into Transquisite in itself the high point of my career till date. This was a huge step for me; Working for global Organisations like Hays, Geneva Health, Robert Half, Medacs amongst others are brands that already have a global presence in the market. Candidates and clients are more responsive to you because of this and you also have unlimited access to resources provided by the company to make the job a lot easier.
To step out of my comfort zone and venture out alone to build a name for myself and my business knowing that your building a team that share the same objectives as you is very rewarding.
What would you say to young Nigerians still in the diaspora about the situation at home?
Look at Kenya; one of the areas that generate a large portion of the country’s income is Tourism, they’ve used their natural habitat and the animals that reside there to create one of Africa’s most visited countries
However I also believe that the government need to entice those in the diaspora to come home and add value. This will convince those in the Diaspora that Nigeria is ready to invest in change.
Do you have any other information, views or opinion you want to pass across?
As a nation Nigeria needs to open their eyes to the rest of the world and implement strategic plans that benefit the people of Nigeria and not just favour the wealthy. Tourism is something that Nigeria can benefit from, it’s a beautiful country with so much greenery and history and developed further can pull in tourists from all over the world. Tourism is an industry that can immediately result in job creation. It’s not good enough that it’s just Calabar that has been developed; Lagos has also come a very long way under excellent government of His Excellency Babatunde Fashola. If every state invests in creating attractions as a country, Nigeria as a whole has the potential to be one of Africa’s most visited destinations; If Kenya and South Africa can do it why can’t we.
Education is another issue that Nigeria faces, the system only works for the middle class and the wealthy.The less fortunate do not have the privilege of education. This is where the government should offer free education, or training. Because our children are tomorrow’s future and they shouldn’t be segregated because of their household’s income.