Exquisite magazine celebrates a phenomenal woman and industry icon Omon Odike, the founder and CEO of U-connect and gr8jobsng. It’s been a remarkable journey of 19 years and Exquisite Magazine is pleased to have an interview with her. Let’s read up on her success story!

Tell us about Yourself

Hey there, it’s Omon Odike, and I’m excited to take you on a journey through my transformation, impact, and dreams. Starting out as a lawyer was a solid foundation, and I spent quite a few years in that world. But you know how life surprises us – it had a unique path in store for me.

Imagine this: I set up U-Connect, my HR consulting firm, and it’s been going strong for a remarkable 19 years! Yes, you read that right.

My focus on talent management, youth employment, empowerment, and building exceptional organizations has been the heart of my firm’s success. It’s been an adventurous ride, full of learning, growth, and making a real impact in the business realm.

Some of the highlights that light me up:

– I’ve placed over 15,500 employees in Nigeria and across Africa.

– I’ve trained over 20,000 Nigerian youths in employability skills, thanks to our CSR programs.

– Back in 2016, I launched Gr8jobsng, an online HR recruitment platform that bridges the gap between employees and employers.

– I’ve hosted and collaborated with national and multinational companies on more than 35 career fairs.

But here’s where the excitement doubles – I jumped into the world of media! I’m currently the host of “Omon’s Couch,” a super impactful Entrepreneurship Talk show on YouTube. This platform lets me bring together aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs to share their stories, insights, wisdom, and dreams. Trust me, being part of their journey is incredibly inspiring.

My story isn’t just about making leaps; it’s about embracing change, bouncing back from setbacks, and grabbing opportunities. From a lawyer to an entrepreneur and media influencer, my journey shows that there are no limits to growth. Every twist and turn in my life is a reminder that when you dare to dream big and put in the hard work, amazing things can happen. And yes, with a sprinkle of God’s Grace, everything becomes possible!

 So that’s the scoop on my journey – and guess what? The adventure is far from over. There’s always something new to explore, conquer, and learn. And if my story can ignite even a tiny spark of motivation in you, well, that’s a win in my book!
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Tell us about your brand and why you chose this path

Introducing “Omon Odike”: Igniting Dreams and Fostering Change”

I’m Omon Odike, and I would like to give you a glimpse into the heart and soul of my brand – a brand that’s all about possibilities, capacity building, empowerment, inspiring dreams, and driving transformation.

So, here’s the deal: I kicked off my journey as a lawyer, diving headfirst into the world of legal complexities. It was a great experience and I learned a lot. But life had other plans for me, plans that led me to become an Entrepreneur with a mission.

 Fast forward to the Birth of U-Connect in 2004, an HR consulting firm where I have spent over 19 years helping companies not just survive, but thrive. It’s about nurturing talent, creating incredible workplaces, and witnessing growth that’s nothing short of extraordinary. My brand is a symbol of excellence, innovation, resilience, and carving your path even when the odds seem stacked.

But that’s not all. The journey took me even further, into the realm of online media. As the host of Nigeria’s Entrepreneurship Talk show “Omon’s Couch”, I get to be the bridge between aspirants and achievers.

It’s all about sharing stories, insights, and dreams because that’s where the magic happens. My brand is about empowering others to take charge of their journeys, break barriers, and boldly pursue what they believe in.

Now, why did I choose this path? Simple. It’s because I believe in the power of dreams. I believe in the untapped potential within each of us. I chose this path to prove that you can pivot, evolve, and conquer whatever you set your mind to. It’s about embracing change, embracing challenges, and transforming them into stepping stones.

So, whether you’re a young entrepreneur just starting out or someone looking for a fresh perspective, “Omon’s Couch” talk show is here to stand with you. It’s about inspiring dreams and turning them into reality. Remember, your dreams are worth every bit of effort you put into them.

 How do you solve your customer’s challenge?

Effectively solving customers’ challenges is like solving a puzzle – it takes a combination of understanding, empathy, and innovation. Here’s how I tackle it:

First, I pay close attention to their concerns, needs, and feedback. I put on my listening ears and get into their world to understand their unique situation. It’s like stepping into their shoes, feeling what they’re feeling, and approaching their challenges with a human touch.

Then, I dive deep into the heart of the problem. I don’t just skim the surface; I make sure I understand the root cause and all the hidden factors that might be at play. This helps me define the problem clearly and create a solid foundation for finding the right solution.

Speaking of solutions, I don’t do “one-size-fits-all.” No way! I tailor my offerings to address their specific challenges. It’s like creating a custom-made solution that fits them perfectly, just like a tailor crafting a bespoke suit.

Now, explaining the solution is just as important. I break down the complex stuff into simple, understandable terms. After all, what’s the use of a solution if they can’t see how it benefits them? So, I make sure they get the “Aha!” moment and see how their lives can get better.

But it doesn’t stop there. I offer ongoing support to make sure the solution works like a charm. It’s like holding their hand as they take their first steps, guiding them through any hurdles, and ensuring they’re not left in the dark.

 Once the solution is in place, I’m all ears for feedback. I want to know how it’s working out for them. Their insights are like gold, helping me fine-tune my approach and make things even better.

Building strong relationships is key. I’m not just a problem solver; I’m a partner. By understanding their challenges on a deeper level, I can anticipate their future needs and offer solutions before they even realize they need them.

And innovation? Oh, that’s my secret sauce. I’m always on the lookout for new ways to shake things up, stay ahead of potential issues, and keep surprising them with fresh ideas.

Remember, every customer is unique, and that’s where the magic happens. A personalized, empathetic approach builds trust and loyalty, making them feel like they’re more than just clients – they’re part of the family. 

Who are your ideal customers?

U-Connect’s ideal customer is typically an organization seeking comprehensive HR consulting services and solutions. This includes businesses of various sizes and industries, as well as individuals in need of tailored career guidance and development. U-Connect’s services cater to those who value effective talent management, organizational growth, and personalized career advancement support.

 And hey, customers who pay on time are like music to our ears- they are the ones who get the U-Connect vibe.

Can you describe/outline your typical day?

My Typical day starts with a moment of zen, a little me-time where I dive into reflection and prayers. Then, it’s all systems go, and I’m in work mode until around 7 p.m. Oh, but there’s a juicy one-hour break in there – gotta keep those energy levels up!

But here’s the twist: As the years rolled on, I found my superpower. It’s this knack for saving my brainstorming escapades for when the world’s asleep and the night’s as quiet as a whisper. Trust me, that’s when the real magic happens. I’m talking late-night, lights dimmed, and creativity on turbocharge – sometimes cruising into the early hours of the next day!

Oh, and here’s the secret to my super-organized life: my trusty notebook. It’s like my sidekick, a tangible companion where I jot down all my daily goals. And boy, does it feel good to check them off one by one – it’s like a mini victory dance on paper.

 You might say I’m a night owl, thriving in those calm, after-hours moments. When the world takes a breath and the night sky is my canvas, that’s when I’m in the zone. 

How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?

Becoming an Entrepreneur has brought about significant impacts on my family life, particularly during the initial years of my marriage when our children were young. Balancing work and personal life was a challenge, necessitating meticulous prioritization and effective time management. However, as my children have grown older, this balance has become more manageable.

Yet, time remains a tricky character. Navigating the business whirlwind while keeping the family ship sailing smoothly – yeah, that’s still a juggling act. And let me tell you, that’s honed my time management skills like nothing else.

The cool thing? My entrepreneur journey is like a live demo for my kids, especially my awesome daughters. They’re watching me chase dreams with all I’ve got, and that’s planting seeds of dedication and ambition in their hearts too.

 Oh, and let’s talk money. Entrepreneurship hasn’t just brought in business wins; it’s been a boost to the family bank too. The financial cushion has brought peace and upgraded our quality of life.

But the real jackpot? It’s the sense of pride that comes with ticking off those entrepreneurial milestones. Me and the fam? We’re all in on this shared adventure. The cheers are louder, and the inspiration’s contagious.

 Sure, the journey involves its twists, but with open talks, shared understanding, and family high-fives, we’re cruising along. My entrepreneur path isn’t just mine; it’s a journey we’re all rocking, growing, and celebrating together.

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What motivates you?

 Let’s talk about what revs up my engine every day. It’s like a mixtape that gets my heart grooving. Personal growth, purpose, challenges, and creativity – it’s all in the blend.

Challenges? They’re like puzzle pieces, keeping my brain wide awake and intrigued. My secret sauce? A sprinkle of creativity and a dash of autonomy – a recipe for thrilling adventures.

But hold up, it’s not just about me. Leaving a positive mark in the world? That’s my superhero mission. And the future? I’m painting it with dreams, one brushstroke at a time.

Improvement? It’s my life buzz, like levelling up in a game, but in real life. And recognition? It’s my virtual high-five for smashing milestones.

 Yet at the core, passion is my secret sauce. It’s like the fuel that powers all I do, infusing energy into each day.

And the icing on this life cake? I get to rock the most amazing job ever – putting smiles on jobseekers all over Nigeria by hooking them up with jobs. Plus, guess what? I get paid for this gig. It’s like a double win that keeps the good vibes alive!

What is your greatest fear?

 When it comes to business fears, the only thing on my radar is the thought of losing clients for preventable reasons. But here’s the deal: I don’t let fear call the shots. My business game is fear-free. I make decisions without letting fear creep in.

My spotlight is on the nitty-gritty of daily operations and tasks that demand attention. Sure, there might be moments of concern, like the fear of a client parting ways. But my commitment to the business’s triumph is like an unshakable anchor. I keep my eyes on the prize, staying focused, determined, and utterly dedicated to steering the ship effectively.

Fear? Nah, it’s not invited to my business party. It’s all about setting sail with confidence and watching my endeavours thrive.

How do you define success?

 Success in my business is like a multi-layered cake – each slice is equally important. Firstly, it’s all about that growth vibe. I’m talking about sustainable growth within U-Connect, where the business’s reach, customer love, and profits keep growing over time. It’s like building a solid foundation for stability, growth, and those sweet rewards that everyone loves.

But hey, let’s not forget the main stars of the show – my clients. Their smiles and satisfaction are the golden ticket. Going beyond expectations, understanding their needs, and weaving lasting relationships – that’s where the magic lies.

 Innovation? Oh yes, it’s a must. I’m all about shaking things up, adapting, and introducing fresh ideas, products, or services. It’s like keeping the business dance floor lively and never missing a beat.

Speaking of dance floors, my team’s groove matters too. Their well-being and engagement are the true markers of success. Creating a space where growth sprouts, purpose blooms, and high-fives are a daily thing – that’s the real win.

But here’s the thing that’s close to my heart – Community Impact. It’s not just about business, it’s about touching lives, making a positive change, and leaving a mark that counts. Social, environmental, and charitable vibes? Sign me up.

What do you value the most?

At the core of my values is an unwavering reverence for God Almighty, which serves as the foundational principle guiding my life. Beyond this, my appreciation extends to the significance of family bonds, acknowledging them as a source of strength, support, and cherished relationships that shape my journey.

In both personal and business spheres, I am steadfast in upholding values that underscore integrity, excellence, and ethical conduct. These values not only guide my decisions but also contribute to the authentic relationships I establish within my Company U-Connect.

Furthermore, I recognize the role of community in fostering growth, connection, and collaboration. Embracing a sense of responsibility towards the community is a testament to my belief in collective progress and the shared impact we can create.

 In summary, my values are rooted in faith, family, ethical conduct, personal growth, and community engagement, collectively shaping my path and influencing the positive contributions I aspire to make in various facets of life.

What is your favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

 Beyond financial independence and making a positive impact in the lives of Nigerian Youth through job opportunities and training, I deeply value the process of forming connections with new clients.

Genuinely understanding them and forging relationships that enrich my business interactions. This approach fosters trust, a sense of partnership, and a deeper sense of meaning in the work I do.

 Moreover, the freedom to innovate and evolve without constraints further enhances my sense of purpose and motivation.

If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?

Nothing at all.

What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

From my journey, the critical skill needed to be a successful entrepreneur is absolutely, the ability to sell. In fact, it could be considered one of the foundational skills for entrepreneurial success.

Being able to effectively sell your products or services, whether to clients, investors, or partners, is essential. This involves understanding customer needs, conveying value, and persuading others of the benefits your business provides. Successful entrepreneurs are skilled in building relationships and closing deals.

 Another skill will be adaptability, the ability to navigate uncertainty and change is crucial. Entrepreneurs need to adjust their strategies, products, or services based on market shifts and evolving customer needs to stay alive.

 The last but not the least is Effective Communication. Clear and persuasive communication is essential for conveying your vision, building relationships with clients and partners, and leading your team effectively to success.

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Who has been your greatest inspiration?

My greatest inspiration undoubtedly stems from the Almighty God. His profound Grace has bestowed upon me the ultimate strength and guidance that I carry as I navigate this business journey. 

What advice would you give to people who want to become entrepreneurs?

 Here’s a gem from my journey: young entrepreneurs, listen up. Step one? Find your product or service vibe. But here’s the secret sauce – make sure it’s something the world needs. You’ve got to be the solution to a real problem out there.

Now, grab your compass – a solid business plan. It’s like mapping out your path to success. And when it’s time to show your stuff to the world, sprinkle that marketing magic. Be bold, unleash your creative beast, and brace for some hard work. It’s like building a castle – brick by brick.

Oh, and here’s where the magic happens: patience, resilience, and passion. These are your secret weapons. When the road gets bumpy, don’t give up. And hey, let’s talk value – it’s your golden ticket. Give your customers something worth their time and money. 

Last thing, but definitely not the least – a little faith goes a long way. With the Almighty God on your side, trust me, all those dreams are within reach. So go on, rock those entrepreneurial waters!

Remember your entrepreneurial path is unique – keep learning, evolving, and embracing growth opportunities.

What is your favourite book?

“Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki & Sharon Lechter 

If you were to write a book about yourself, what would you name it?

Living the Legacy: Omon Odike’s unforgettable journey.

Please share the contact details you wish to be made public.

 Email: omon@u-connect-ng.com

 Website: www.u-connect-ng.com



 Social Media Handles:

 LinkedIn: omomeneodike

Instagram: Omonodike

Facebook: Omonodike

YouTube: omon’s couch

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