By James Asu
Fela Durotoye, prominent Nigerian public speaker was a guest speaker at the just-concluded 2012 Business Summit organised by the Thriving Business Women Fellowship at Lagos NUT Pavilion , Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos.
Speaking at the 3-day programme tagged “Information for Transformation”, the Chief Executive Officer of the Gemstone Group, a leadership development institution dedicated to building exemplary leaders of excellence for all spheres of national transformation, dwelt on “Becoming a Global Brand”.
He said: “Nigeria is potentially great but living below its potential. Potential has no benefit until it is realized. Our generational challenge is how we can leave a better future for the next generation. Every assignment is tied to your divine location.”
He posed some crucial questions to the audience on how they can know whether they are really living or merely existing. He called it ‘vacuum analysis’: “What will Nigeria miss or lose when you’re gone? When the record of the New Nigeria is written, will your name be there and with which ink will it be written? Your name can either be written with invisible or indelible ink. Those who act now to make the new Nigeria a reality will have their names written with indelible ink while those who don’t will have theirs written with invisible ink. Your decision (or indecision) and action (or inaction) to the new Nigeria’s dream will either be written with indelible or invisible ink. Which ink will your name be written with when the new Nigeria becomes a reality?” he asked.
He defined a brand as an identity. “Brand commands values than numbers. Brand is sought-after. When you’re not a brand, you pursue everybody and try to do everything. You need to discover that one thing that you’re born to do and develop a brand with that. Ask yourself ‘What is my one thing?’ You can’t do everything because you’re not born to do everything! That’s why I love Paul of Tarsus; he focused all his strengths and energies on just one thing. Little wonder he said ‘This one thing I do’.
“Building of successful brands boost economies of nations and make them successful. Every brand must have a unique identity. Position doesn’t guarantee prominence but unique identity does. Brand has association. You can connect brand to something. You must be associated with something. Your name must be associated with something… Serena Williams, tennis; Tiger Woods, golf; Oprah Winfrey; Warren Buffet, investment; Steve Jobs, Apple Computer; David Beckham; football.”
“What must I mention for your name to appear?” he asked the participants, adding that “your purpose is determined by God, to be discovered by you.”
He highlighted the keys to successful personal brand: “Unique identity: Every brand must have a unique identity. Association: Every brand has association or attached to something. Clear message: Write a message around yourself – MTN (Everywhere you go); GLO (Rule your world); ETISALAT (Now you’re talking).
“Character traits: Brands have certain character traits. You need features which make your brand so special. What is one distinguishing thing about your life that points you to what you like doing? What is that distinguishing thing that people see in you that is an icon? Many times your name transcends your tenure. Every brand has character and it is their character that determines their reputation. Each word that describes you in a good way is a value adding word.
“Consistency: You must have consistency. It is your consistency that makes you reliable. You have to come to a point when people are not surprised about you because of your consistency. Your identity must be consistent. Predictable excellence: The capacity to see what others have not yet seen.
“Power of innovation: Innovation is what makes a brand appealing. To be an innovative person you need to discover four things: What does not exist; what is not being done well; what is not being done cheap enough and what is not being done conveniently.”
He gave participants seven ways to become a global brand: “ 1. Be different 2. Do things differently 3. Be consistent (Stay on one thing and continue to upgrade yourself) 4. Have a clear message (You don’t have a message until the day people can predict your message). 5. Be the Best 6. Be the “Go to” Person 7. Be visible”
Said he: “Watch your thoughts because it becomes ideas, your ideas because it becomes actions, your actions because it becomes habits, your habits because it becomes character and your character because it becomes your destiny.”
#James Asu is a young change agent who believes in a new Nigeria; he is passionate about speaking on Purpose Discovery and poised to impact other young people. He is the Principal Partner of School of Purpose Discovery International; he can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org or 08169653332
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