Meet Oyindamola Joseph, the Founder and Head Chocolatier at ChocolateWorks Gourmet. Before starting CWG, Oyin worked as a procurement professional. She has 10 years of experience working in strategic sourcing, procurement and supply chain management in a variety of industries including manufacturing, telecommunications, retail, healthcare and charity organizations.
Oyindamola’s Chocolate Works Gourmet was born out of a desire to bring premium, luxury chocolates to the Nigerian marketplace. After training under world-class chocolatiers to learn and master the art of chocolate making, Oyin made the move back to Nigeria and founded CWG in 2019. Utilizing her background in procurement, Oyin sources only the highest quality chocolate for all CWG products. She is a chartered procurement professional (MCIPS), holding the highest level procurement designation from the internationally recognized organization CIPS.
Oyindamola’s education includes a Masters in Economics, Finance and Development from the University of Surrey, UK, a BSc. in Economics and Banking from the University of Greenwich, UK and a Certificate in Negotiation and Leadership from Harvard Law School Boston, Massachusetts.
Read our Q & A With her and be inspired.
In Three Words, how would you describe Oyin.
Oyin is creative, result-oriented and dependable.
Share a little bit about your background.
I am of a firm belief that with God all things are possible. My education at the first and second degree levels was in Economics with a bias in Development. With my natural ability for prudence, veering into Procurement became easy. To strengthen my procurement skill, I also did a course in Negotiations at Harvard. By the grace of God, I had worked at both middle Management levels in various sectors of the economy in England and Canada. However, I believe if I could achieve for other organizations abroad I could as well use my expertise to improve my country of birth in value and economy.
What do you consider your greatest achievement in your life so far?
Starting ChocolateWorks Gourmet from the scratch.
What would you say are some of the practical steps you have taken towards ensuring consistent growth in your career?
Staying flexible and enthusiastic, sharpening my skills and keeping abreast of emerging concepts and ideas, retraining, investing time and money, Benchmarking against the competition, feedback from customers, these help us learn where the holes in my service are. Asking for customers, input. Aligning training with management’s operating goals, we keep innovating.
Tell us how your journey to “Sweet World” started and how CWG (Chocolate Works Gourmet) was birthed?
When the inspiration of chocolate business came in 2015, I remember closing from my regular job and going to do an evening job in a chocolate company as a way of learning the job. Apart from that, I did other online lessons to upgrade my learning. The inspiration and progress of Chocolate Works have been God and the inputs of my parents, brother and close friends cannot be quantified.
Would you say you know your purpose in life? If Yes, how did you come to this realization?
I would say yes to an extent. One of my purpose in life is to become the best version of myself, leave a legacy that supersedes me.
When you are not making chocolates, you are…?
When I am not making chocolate, I am strategizing, conceptualizing new products. I am inspired by excellence and so I listen and learn from criticisms. I also enjoy spending time with family and friends or enjoying dinning out, I love good food and great ambiance.
What inspires you?
I find inspiration in the everyday. I am fascinated by relationships of all types. Through creating, I enjoy the challenge of communicating what we each experience in our everyday lives, celebrating moments and bringing those unique moments to life through my chocolate creations.
What advice can you offer to younger women on Entrepreneurship?
To younger women, I want to advise them to believe in themselves that they can do all things through God and not be discouraged. They should also have a vision and be hardworking, success has no room for laziness. Venture into what you believe in and care deeply about. Steve Jobs noted that the only way to be satisfied in your life is to do work that you truly believe in.
Also, they shouldn’t compromise on excellence. Excellence has no colouration. When people see an excellent product they go for it irrespective of price. For instance, excellence and performance stood me out in the organizations where I worked abroad irrespective of my skin colour.
They should surround themselves with good people and remember that a business doesn’t have to start big to succeed.
What is the most important life lesson you’ve learned so far?
Believe in yourself, that you can succeed, and you’ll find ways through different obstacles. If you don’t, you’ll just find excuses. Luck can take you only so far and the rest is entirely up to you, the amount of effort you put in every day, and the ability to learn from your mistakes. I am still learning, but I have learned to trust God and leave the past mistakes and achievements behind and keep pushing for excellence.
Where do you draw strength on days when you feel no motivation to get things done?
I am motivated by my customers, their responses to my product, the flow of traffic to our Instagram page(@chocolateworksng), the willingness of individuals to support me. Seeing reviews and messages from them re-affirm my confidence in my brand.
What is your take on “women supporting women”?
I am all about positivity and female solidarity. There is nothing more powerful than an outstretched hand of another woman in your direction. For me, it is and continues to be a lifeline. Hearing each other’s stories and helping others work through challenges. When you know you are supported, you feel empowered, your confidence rises. You are unstoppable. With the Women supporting women movement, great things have happened and there are many more to come. But we must continue, there is still a lot of work to do. It is important for us as women to support each other because we are relational beings, made to connect. When you support another individual, you are becoming part of something bigger than yourself. You are developing a network that has a way of connecting in unimaginable ways. Women should support women and draw inspiration from one another.
Time travel or teleportation?
I would time travel to the future. With time travel, you can go back in history or the future. With this, you can get privy information on lotto numbers & stock markets. Make investments in stock based on that or play the lottery and win with the glimpse of winning numbers you would have seen from time travelling.
Also with time travel If you make a mistake / do something stupid you get the chance to go back in time and change it or prevent future mistakes by time travelling into the future. You could also save many lives by knowing what’s going to happen when and where and warm people against it (earthquakes, hurricanes etc.).
Teleportation, on the other hand, is technically possible already, by way of flying, it just takes longer.
What would you like to be remembered for?
I believe that kindness can change lives, heal wounds, and most certainly help others. I want to be remembered not just as someone who is kind, compassionate, and helps others; I want to actually BE someone who is kind, compassionate, and helps others, whether I am remembered for it or not. Also for being my authentic self, that I made a difference, that I contributed somehow to the good of this world, that my sense of aliveness in things I do set an example for others to consider for themselves.
Support Oyindamola’s Business https://www.chocolateworksng.com/