•L-R: Chairman, Board of Trustees, WIMBIZ, Funmi Roberts (2016 – 2019); Chairperson, Executive Council, WIMBIZ, Olubunmi Aboderin-Talabi (2017 – 2019); current Chairperson, Executive Council, WIMBIZ, Ngover Ihyembe-Nwankwo; current Chairman, Board of Trustees, WIMBIZ, Ifeyinwa Ighodalo; during the handover ceremony of new Chairman of the Board of Trustees and new Chairperson, Executive Council, at the Women in Management, Business and Public Service (WIMBIZ) 18th Annual Conference held at Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, on November 8, 2019.

…as WIMBIZ tasks women on urges women winning strategies

By Ebunoluwa Sessou

One of the highlights of this year’s Women in Management, Business and Public Service, WIMBIZ, annual conference was the change in the leadership of the organization.

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After the two days event, the baton of leadership fell on to Ifeyinwa Ighodalo, Founder/CEO, DO.II Designs Limited. She took over as the Chairman of WIMBIZ Board of Trustees from her predecessor, Funmi Roberts who has been the Chairman of the WIMBIZ Board of Trustee for three years

Meanwhile, Olubunmi Aboderin-Talabi handed over the baton of leadership of the WIMBIZ Executive Council as Chairperson after her two year tenure to Ngover Ihyembe-Nwankwo, Head Coverage, Rand Merchant Bank, Nigeria.

The 18th  WIMBIZ Annual Conference which came with the theme, “Shaping the Future: Strategizing to Win” focused on how women can shape the future by developing strategies to win, on the long run.

It was an opportunity for frank discussion, deliberation and debate on the future of women in their various sectors, and how they can build and sustain a successful career. The conference also helped equip women with winning strategies to shape the future and provided practical solutions to several common issues affecting women professionally and personally.

The gathering which is an annual event in November attracted more than 2,000 women from all works of life.

In her welcome address, erstwhile Chairperson, Executive Council, WIMBIZ, Olubunmi Aboderin-Talabi explained that the rationale behind the theme for this year’s conference was to point to the inherent ability that is latent within each person to make something of their future. “We all have the capacity to be proactive in shaping the outcome of our lives” she added.

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The chairperson of the event, former Chief Judge, Federal High Court of Nigeria, Hon. Justice Rose Ukeje, OFR.  , commended WIMBIZ for putting together the conference and their consistency over the past 18 years with empowering and inspiring women.

Mrs Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi, First Lady, Ekiti State who delivered the keynote address on Day 1 of the conference, urged women to be the change they want to see in others. She implored women to shield and support one another, rise and set their sights on all the great things women can accomplish together.

One of the delegates and also a recipients of the “The 2019 Female Achievers’ Award, Engr. Ebele Okeke, former of head of civil service of the federation and Chairman/CEO Chantaly Engineering Services said, “Every woman should not see herself as inferior to the man. We must have self-confidence in whatever we are doing and make sure that the sky is the limit. “If you are good in what you are doing men will commend you”, she assured

She however urged Nigerian women to keep trying hard in politics saying women should endeavour to take their rightful positions in the political sphere of the country.

Also, Amal Inyingiala Pepple, CFR, former Head of Service, former Minister of Housing, Former Chairman, Minimum Wage Committee 2018, Board Member, SunTrust Bank Nigeria Ltd, I want to tell women that they should not feel inferior to any man that they should work hard, get good education and also ensure that they prove that they got to that point because of hard work. Hard work pays because it.

In her words, Folashade Ambrose-Medebem,  Director of Communication, Public Affairs & Sustainable Development, Lafarge Africa Plc, noted that, “Everything is possible adding that women can take their place now and in the future if they put their minds to it. We need to be at the table and also create our own table as well”, she said.

Networking and Session for Delegates

One of the highlights of the event was the networking breakfast for professionals across different sectors, which took place at the first day of the event. There was seven plenary sessions that were featured alongside six breakout sessions and a Live Streamed across the world.

The various sessions helped delegates learn how to develop winning strategies to secure their seat at the table; collaborate to win; navigate the old boys club; understand consumer behaviour for their business; reach the vast number who are not on the internet; overcome trauma; silence shame; rise above the imposter syndrome; mitigate unbeneficial financial surprises in retirement years; negotiate a fair contract which accurately reflects their worth among others.

Rewarding Hard work

One of the things that made this year’s event unique was the recognition award given to some of the women who have worked tirelessly to make a different in their spheres of life.

The award tagged, “The 2019 Female Achievers’ Award recongnised trail blazing women in the civil service who have contributed to the growth and sustainability of the public sector. The recipients of the award include Engr. Ebele Okeke, OON, CFR, Chairman/CEO Chantaly Engineering Services and Amal Inyingiala Pepple, CFR, Board Member, SunTrust Bank Nigeria Ltd.

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The winners of the WIMBIZ Impact Investment Competition, sponsored by ACT Foundation, were also announced at the conference. The 2019 Impact Investment Grant recipients were: Augustina Emele, CEO Chais Initiative; Adenike Ogunsade, CEO Crowncare Couture; and Peggy Ovat, CEO Peggies Kitchen.



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