She Leads Africa


Did you know that you can give 110% effort and fail miserably, even with a good business idea?

I’ve seen it more times than I can count. An eager entrepreneur has a brilliant idea and quickly forges ahead, only to come back disappointed that things did not work out.

By the time they come to that realization, they have likely invested a lot of money, energy and time that they will never get back.

Entrepreneurs going through this experience usually assume that they are simply not cut out for entrepreneurship.

It is at this point that I dig a little deeper into their execution process and I find that the real problem was that the idea or goal was underdeveloped, leading to poor execution. It was a set-up for failure from the start.

I then have the task of talking the entrepreneur off the ledge by explaining that there may have been nothing wrong with their effort, resources or intentions. The reason for the apparent failure was likely that the goal was an inherently bad goal.

When it comes to execution in business, a good goal is not just noble in its intention, but it also S.M.A.R.T.

It is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. Ensuring that your goal meets these criteria increases the likelihood of success.

It eliminates wasted time and hones in on the best strategy for success.

Specific goals break down your general goals into manageable pieces so that they are easier to achieve. A great example of this might be to increase your annual revenue.

“Increase revenue in 2019” is a noble general goal.

An even better goal is to “increase revenue in 2019 by identifying profit leaks and creating monthly marketing campaigns in order to obtain new clients.”

Using that example, it’s easy to see how an entrepreneur can go from casting a wide net and taking a chance on what sticks, to identifying a specific strategy for success.

Even that specific goal can be further developed as you think about other factors that will affect the outcome.

By adding metrics and changing the goal to “increase revenue by 40% in 2019, by identifying profit leaks and creating monthly marketing campaigns in order to obtain new clients,” the direction and initial action steps are even clearer.

This way, there is little room for wasted resources and time.

The attainable and realistic factors in the S.M.A.R.T. formula are subjective factors determined by the individual’s readiness to start working on their goals.

An entrepreneur who does not have a marketing budget needs to first raise the money or create a budget for marketing before embarking on the goal above.

Without a budget for a robust campaign, attempting to increase revenue by creating marketing campaigns will prove futile.- @andrena_sawyerCLICK TO TWEET

It seems obvious enough, but many entrepreneurs still do not count the cost before they set their foot on the pavement.

The last piece of the formula is timeliness. This ensures that the person setting the goal has a sense of urgency and can fend off complacency when working toward their goal.

It is easy to overlook this final piece, but it is just as critical as the others because it has two extremes: too much time allotted for the goal, and not enough time.

When there is too much time, it is easy to fall into traps of procrastination and complacency. These are traps that force individuals to believe they have more time to do the work than they actually do.

They lose their sense of urgency, which opens the door for others to leverage their ideas, or for a competitor to get to a product launch before they do. The other extreme is not to give yourself enough time.

No goal is perfect, and neither is every process, and there is room for imperfection. – @andrena_sawyerCLICK TO TWEET

By rushing toward the goal, entrepreneurs stand the risk of sabotaging by not properly assessing the risks and all of the factors necessary for success.

After all, there’s value for the entrepreneur in trial and error and even failure.

However, by ensuring that your goals are S.M.A.R.T., you set yourself up to experience the thrill of achievement that will become a motivation for future successes.


Andrena Sawyer is the President of P.E.R.K. Consulting (www.perkconsulting.net), and the author of The Misadventures of a New Entrepreneur: 5 Things They Won’t Teach You in Business School. Connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram @Andrena_Sawyer

Culled from sheleadsafrica.org

Credit: SLA, Andrena Sawyer

Facebook’s Policy Programmes Head in Africa, Sherry Dzinoreva, says the company will intensify its female entrepreneurship training in 10 universities in Nigeria in 2019.

Speaking during the ”SheMeansBusiness” dinner in Lagos, Dzinoreva said that Facebook was collaborating with ”She Leads Africa”to intensify female entrepreneurship training in Nigeria.

She said that training would be intensified through its ”SheMeansBusiness” programme that was launched in Nigeria in 2018.

According to her, the company trained over 4,000 female entrepreneurs in the country in 2018, through the SheMeansBusiness programme.

”We are going to continue to train thousands of women as well this year. Not very different from what we did last year, the only difference this year is that we are going into university as well.

”So we are going to be crossing 10 different universities across the country, as well as continuing to train female entrepreneurs.

”The ideas of the programme is for women to come together to learn how to use digital platforms to grow their businesses, but in doing so, we also have a number of other types of engagements.

”And as they do this, there are opportunities to network and learn how to actually grow their businesses.

”This year, we are bringing financial literacy into the programme as well. it is opportunity to empower and support female business owners and aspiring female business owners,” she said.

Dzinoreva said that there was no specific criteria to engage on the programme, but just the entrepreneurial spirit of women who were either aspiring or existing entrepreneurs.

She said that Facebook felt that there was definitely a need to do something a bit different for the women.

”There is something about creating spaces for women because we know that when women are doing well, their communities are doing well.

”When women are doing well; their families are doing well, businesses, industries are doing well and ultimately, the economy is driving as well.

”So we wanted to create a programme that was exclusively for women who were either one of you or are women who are thinking about opening a business and just need a little bit of inspiration,” Dzinoreva said.

The Director, Public Policy Africa at Facebook, Ebele Okobi, said that there was the need for women to be in charge of their destinies, as it would affect the nation.

Okobi said that Facebook was interested in ensuring that women used its platforms – Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp – to create economic independence.

The Co-Founder, She Leads Africa, Afua Osei, said that this was the company’s third year of working with Facebook on a programme to teach, train and support women entrepreneurs.

”And last year, we had the opportunity to work on a programme that was just focused on women, understanding the unique challenges, as well as opportunities for women entrepreneurs.

”We changed more than 4,000 women all across Nigeria. So we are so excited that our training continued to have a serious impact in helping women all across Nigeria.

”This year we are going to drive around in Nigeria, and we are going to get 10 universities all across the country.

”We know that young people are entrepreneurial, they are excited, but they don’t really have that much money. So we are going to teach them how to start getting into businesses with a little cash,

”We are going to bring the training and the expertise to them, so that they can have that experience on their campuses,” Osei said.


Credit: Pulse News

Afua Osei is an entrepreneur, investor, and a Public Speaker. She is also the Co-founder of She Leads Africa, a media company for millennial African women.

Afua Osei was born in Washington DC. She spent her formative years in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Osei graduated cum laude from Allegheny College with degrees in Political Science and was the first student to design their own major in Black Studies. She received the Faculty Prize for the Best Interdisciplinary Senior Thesis and the Ray Smock Political Science Prize for promise in local and state politics

In 2013, she graduated from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and Harris School of Public Policy Studies with a Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Policy.

After graduating from college, Osei participated in the Campaign Corps Fellowship, a comprehensive Democratic campaign training program, covering all aspects of running a successful political campaign sponsored by EMILY’s ListShe was a Fulbright Scholar in Malaysia and also served in the Office of First Lady Michelle Obama. After business school, Osei moved to Lagos, Nigeria to serve as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company [8] providing strategy and operations expertise to clients in South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana and the United States.

In 2014, Osei co-founded She Leads Africa, a “community for smart ambitious young African women,” with Yasmin Belo-Osagie.

She Leads Africa provides women across more than 35 countries with business and career advice and has been featured in several international publications including The Financial Times,[11]CNN,[12] CNBC Africa,[13] Huffington Post,[14] and Black Enterprise.

 On December 9, 2016, She Leads Africa rang the Closing Bell at the New York Stock Exchange.

Osei has been recognized by Forbes Africa as one of the Youngest Power Women in Africa (2014), named by Ventures Africa as one of the top 25 African innovators to watch in 2016 and one of the 30 Quartz Africa innovators in 2017. She was selected as a judge for the Chivas Venture competition, “a global search to find and empower the next generation of young entrepreneurs determined to succeed while changing the world for the better.”

She has been a featured speaker at TEDxEuston in London, G20 Africa Partnership Conference in Germany, Essence Festival Durban in South Africa, and Thomson Reuters Foundation Trust Conference in the UK.


Credit: Wikipedia

On Saturday, November 17th, 5 female entrepreneurs will be pitching for N5m in funding at the Demo Day of the She Leads Africa Accelerator.  The Demo Day is the closing ceremony for the 3-month program designed to identify, support and fund the next generation of Nigeria’s brightest entrepreneurs. During the Demo Day, each entrepreneur will have just 5 minutes to pitch their case to a panel of esteemed judges including Odun Eweniyi (Co-founder, Piggybank), Akintunde Oyebode (Executive Secretary, LSETF), and Adia Sowho (VP of Commercial, Mines.io).

Date: Saturday, November 17th, 2018

After a rigorous application process, 10 entrepreneurs were selected from hundreds of applicants to join the 2018 accelerator cohort. The 10 candidates convened in Lagos for 3 residency weeks over 3 months where they received training in business strategy, financial modelling, digital marketing, talent acquisition and more.

The final stage of the process is the Demo Day where the top 5 participants, as selected by their peers have the opportunity to pitch for funding. First place gets N5m, second place, N2m and 3rd place, N1m.

Limited seats are available for this event. If interested in attending, please email programs@sheleadsafrica.org with your name and company.



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In its bid to change the perception of African women and expose them to technologies that can help promote their careers, a women-oriented organisation, She Leads Africa, says it is organising a one-day event tagged, “SLAY Festival.”

According to a statement by the co-founders of the organisation, Afua Osei and Yasmin Belo-Osagie, the festival — open to female entrepreneurs — will help spur deeper thinking and ambition while creating an interactive and unforgettable experience among women in Africa.

In order to create awareness about solar energy and eco-friendly waste disposal, the co-founders also said the event, which would take place in Lagos, would partner with Solar Shop and Recycle Points.


The statement said, “The festival is a one-day celebration of innovation, culture, technology, music, arts, food and all things entrepreneurial.

“SLAY Festival is a fun way to celebrate everything that makes the African woman great by equipping attendees with tools, resources and connections that will enhance their careers and achieve their goals.

With a membership of over 200,000 female entrepreneurs in over 30 countries, Osei and Bello-Osagie said the community had been able to supply business and career advice through in-person workshops and digital training on their worldwide city tours, called SheHive