With less than 12 days to the kick off of African Women In Technology (AWIT) Conference in Lagos, Nigeria. We at innov8tiv promised to introduce to you bit by bit to some of the ladies who will be speaking at this year’s event. In our little intro today, we would like you to meet Banwo Omobolanle.
She will be speaking at the Represent (You, Your Brand & Social Media) session; but before you listen to her on that session. Here is a little up close and personal with Banwo Omobolanle.
Today, technology in the workspace represents the underlying medium that enables people to do work and communicate or collaborate with other people. Technology has changed the nature of work.
You can sit at your desk and do work on your computer via a number of apps, and you can collaborate with anyone in any time zone in real time.
How long have you been exposed to the African tech field, and how has this influenced your knowledge of technological advancement in Africa?
Well, I’m a designer. I suppose I’ve been exposed to the African Tech Field since I got my first gig as a designer in this ecosystem. That’s about 6 to 7 years ago. Since then till now, there’s been obvious advancements in the industry.
There sure are a lot more companies than there were 10 years years ago, and in new areas as well. More people are choosing a career in tech, more foreign investment is pouring into the sector, and the government has even jumped on the trend. The landscape is definitely different than it was when I started.
Considering how important professional branding is, are you different from your brand or do you represent your public brand at all times?
The answer is yes and no. It depends. You are different from your brand if your brand is decidedly a separate entity from you. But if you are the face of your brand, and are the reason people interact with your brand, then you are not different from your brand. Say you’re a Youtuber – a food blogger or a comedian, you are going to be almost inseparable from your brand. If you are the face of your brand (and by extension, the same as your brand), you will have to be intentional about keeping all communications online on-brand. Or create a separate personal profile.
As a woman working on expanding opportunities for women by empowering them with digital skill sets, what has been your most challenging moment?
My most challenging moment is realizing that there are a lot more women out there that we could be of help to if we had all the resources required. There are women in many other cities and locations writing every day, asking that we bring TFDm to them, and we can’t be everywhere right now. That’s the challenge, but we’re growing, thanks to the support from our partners. We could use more partners and sponsors to go to all the places we need to go and train as many women as possible.
It is believed that we are being launched into the third industrial revolution, and this digitization will consequently change the politics of jobs. How do you think women in Africa can take advantage of this to advance and stay relevant?
The nature of work is changing. There are new kinds of jobs that exist today that didn’t exist 10 years ago. In another 10 years, who knows the new kinds of jobs that will be available, thanks to technology? My advice to every woman out there is to embrace technology. Think of the one problem you want to solve in the area you’re passionate about and figure out how to use technology to solve it. It’s going to require learning new technologies, and women – all of us – should not shy away from that.