These six trailblazers are defying stereotypes and redefining the norm!

Everyday in every way, more women are shattering glass ceilings and excelling in various spheres of life! From entrepreneurship to PR, Finance and Style, Guardian Woman sat down with six trailblazers who are defying stereotypes, redefining the norm and showing others that it is not possible but achievable to excel in any chosen field they desire to go into.

Bukky Karibi-Whyte (Principal Consultant and Founder, Robert Taylor Media) on some hurdles she’s had to overcome? I face the same hurdles any woman in business faces. We work in a male-dominated industry. We have other aspects of our lives that must be considered while we run our business- family, home, children and so on. I enjoy being a woman in my industry. I am passionate about giving my best and impressing my clients, as my male counterparts would do. There is nothing more challenging yet rewarding as being a young female chief executive in the 21st Century.

Chinwe Egwim(Economist with FBNQuest Merchant Bank)on some of the things you’ve done to empower women? I am active across platforms geared towards uplifting women. I am an Associate of WIMBIZ and currently serve as the Head of Fundraising on the planning committee. I’m also a Big Sister under the WIMBIZ Big Sister Initiative, where I have the privilege of empowering secondary school girls through economic literacy. Additionally, I am a member of the WIMBoard Advocacy Committee where I assist with deploying advocacy tools for driving increased participation of women on boards across Africa. I am also a senior advisor at self-worth organisation/God’s Wives, an NGO that provides support for widows. I am also a Director at 9to5 Chick, a female-centric career hub dedicated to supporting professional women by equipping them with the skills to thrive in the workplace.

Chizoba Okpala Atsu (CEO, Elle’s Icebox) on how she’s promoting and helping women looking up to her?
I very recently discovered a platform called Girlhub, which is about building up young women who volunteer in spaces that are relevant to their careers and their future paths. I am a patron for that organization and I support the mentees and the founder, just because I am built to have a positive energy, so being a part of a forum that supports women in building themselves and being better is something that is key for me. I mentor and support a lot of women and I support anybody who is going through a difficulty and do my best to support them through the process. I’m one person who is willing to support another woman in any way possible that she needs to grow. I wrote a cocktail recipe book in 2015 just because I wanted there to be a tool that was available to anyone that wanted to start a business and that tool would give them the basic information to starting a business and having a leg up in the process and it has been an amazing instrument.

Foluso Gbadamosi (Director, Business Process & Technology, Prime Atlantic Group) on some things she has contributed towards the growth of (female owned) tech startups and companies? I actively seek out and grasp opportunities to mentor younger women, especially as I’m a product of the wisdom, experiences and guidance of older women. As an extrovert with a broad and diverse network of professionals and experts, I am ever willing and ready to connect female founders to relevant support. Through my diverse board engagements, I am also able to provide unique perspectives to female founders at various stages of the startup life cycle.

Tosin Durotoye (Founder/Principal Consultant for the Red Kite Group, The Bloom Africa) on how she’s creating opportunities for women coming behind her in her field?
My ultimate goal is to create opportunities for Nigerian women beyond even the tech space. I want women to be empowered to explore any field they want but to be able to do so with the expertise, confidence and support needed to thrive. This is why I founded The Bloom Africa. It’s a platform that curates small-scale events that connect ambitious women to one another. I believe that women connect on a deeper level at smaller gatherings where they can share their dreams, goals, fears, challenges and strengths. It is my hope that these gatherings will nurture relationships that will lead to friendships, business partnerships and personal and career support. A part of the platform that I’m most excited about is a mentorship program for young girls between the ages of 15-18 that I’ll be launching soon.

Veronica Odeka (Style Curator and Founder, Vanestyle) on the attributes necessary to grow and maintain a successful career in the beauty and fashion industry (in her opinion) industry?
I can only speak on what has benefited me as my brand has grown over the years, and that is being highly structured and disciplined with my time as well as communicating effectively always. For me, it is necessary to always make a conscious decision to think about the needs of my clients before they do; learning to position my brand globally through relationship building and maintaining a focus to always deliver as promised has greatly attributed to our success.

We absolutely love it when women come together. Like we always say, the sky is big enough for all Queens to fly and shine! Bravo to The Guardian Nigeria team for putting this together!

Read the full interview feature here

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