Sunday, December 04, 2011

Six Questions with Chude Jideonwo

Chude Jideonwo is very young. He attended Nigerian Law School, and has become an important entrepreneur in media and related services. Some of the things he has been involved in: writing for magazines, hosting TV shows, running a media company, being a part of EnoughisEnough, using facebook then twitter A LOT, co-founding The Future Nigeria awards, speaking up at the Goodluck Jonathan youth lunch, running a serious PR firm, publishing Y! one of my top-two magazines, being an employer, writing newspaper editorials, marching on Abuja with the youth in March 2010, organizing workshops on social media, ... I admire the guy. Soooo...

I asked him a few questions in my first interview ever:

Where do you see yourself five years from now?
CJ: Honestly in 5 years, I expect to have built a business to be proud of. I look at people like Aliko Dangote and Fola Adeola and I just keep going. These are iconic men so I am by no means comparing myself with them; I am simply inspired by them.
The urgent need to create value, and a brand that will change the way Nigerians access the media – to provoke thought and to inspire action and growth – drives me daily. I am resolutely convinced that the more entrepreneurs our country has, the more its capacity to regenerate itself.
In 5 years, I’d have reached my 30 mark, build a system that can grow and survive outside of me, and move on to the next stage of value creation.

2. Tell upnaira readers four things that make you indescribably happy (PG version o!)
A woman I love.
To produce a magazine edition that wows.
Great food!
Great, over-achieving staff.
3. Describe your business philosophy in three words
CJ: Humaneness. Relentlessness. Integrity.

4. Name your two biggest crushes ever :)
CJ: I can’t even lie 0 – I have a crush on Studio 53 presenter Eku Edewor (and there’s a line of people who will roll their eyes when they see this!).
And Angelina Jolie – I can look at her for days!: )

5. Where did you learn to take the initiative and "just do it?"
CJ: I honestly don’t know – I think some people are made that way. In my 5 years or so of being a manager or employer I have seen people who are amazing and competent but who are just not driven and don’t take initiative by themselves – as staff, partners etc. And I don’t take too much offense, because no one taught me. I just knew to achieve the things I want to achieve there’s no choice. Recently I have begun to read biographies, and to find out that its really the spirit that drives any kind of leap.

6. How can more Africans learn to be problem-solvers?
CJ: Tosin honestly I have no idea. But I will hazard a guess. We need more Aliko Dangotes and Mo Ibrahims. People who show Africans the way the Henry Fords and the Rockerfellers showed the Americans it is possible. That way we learn that we have the capacity to do great things. We sorely need inspiration – practical examples.

You're welcome.  

From Chude's profile at RED:
A lawyer and award-winning journalist, Chude has, for more than ten years, garnered key experience in all forms of traditional and new media and has worked as a communication professional with blue chips including the Nigeria LNG, Virgin Nigeria and Bank PHB’s The Apprentice Africa.
Also known as a development expert especially with regard to the youth demographic, in 2007, he was selected as one of 101 Young African Leaders by the African Business Forum; in 2009, he was selected for the US Government’s International Visitors Leadership Programme (IVLP); in May 2010, he was selected for the Nigeria Leadership Initiative’s (NLI) Future Leaders Fellowship. In May 2011 he was appointed a member of the awards committee for the Ford Foundation Jubilee Transparency Award, alongside distinguished Nigerians like Justice Adolphus Karibi-Whyte and Rev. Fr. Matthew Kukah.
He was member of the Editorial Board of NEXT Newspapers, is the youngest recipient of the Nigeria Media Merit Award, and is concluding a Masters programme in Media and Communication at the prestigious Pan-African University, Lagos.
He is Managing Partner at RED, and oversees Creative, Content and Communication.


Ginger said...

Good interview T!

I admire Chude too. He's a fireball of energy and his recent article on the gay bill was spot on.

Ginger said...

Thanks for your 'naughty' comments on my blog. Hope you're much better now :)

Geogio said...

Inspiring words. A challenge and motivation to we the youths... We can do it, we just need to 'up' our drive!

t said...

I agree Geogio. After this interview, I went to one corner and wrote down my own answers to the six questions...

Chuka Obiadi said...

Chude is great for sure, but his article for cnn interview on gay marriage in nigeria leaves a big question mark on his personality. You dont because you want to gain foreign acceptance criticize something you know is in the right direction. For sure, our senators are nothing to right home about but you cant use that as a base to critisize the anti gay marriage bill. You said "it makes me feel tired of being nigerian". Going to the foreign media to kill nigeria the more is certainly unpatriotic. Will i say that you are gay, or may in the future be planing to the marry your fellow man. This is so bad coming from you in the midst of foriegn treats to our soveriegnty with their so called foreign aid. May i remind you chude, that this foreign polititians make gain out of seeing africa in dissarray. If nigeria was stable this wouldnt be a treat. Your voice strongly needed in areas where they could expose bad governance and lead a path for a stable nigeria. People like you, i see as the present day Gani Fahwemi, and other noble nigerians but as for that inteview by cnn, i saw you as one of those money seeking nigerians who will betray nigeria in other to gain foreign recognition. Too bad! Chude, Too bad! I am sorely dissapointed in you.

t said...

six questions, anyone can answer, so i did.
Five years from now:
A house that I like. Travelling again. My first novel is published. I have met Rafa Nadal. 1 million people have read my work. I have refocused on engineering, science, and math.

Very happy:
One more person reading my work
Decadence (The pleasure of being alone warm doing exactly what I want at that instant, could be the bath with candles and Ella Fitzgerald, or an all-nighter watching tennis, or taking a walk to buy food, reading all day...)

Professional philosophy:

Biggest crushes:
most of my exes
maybe Eric Bana (a perfect ten in the looks department)

Anger made me so. I am generally lazy/passive, but my attitude changes when the mission is right.

Africans being problem-solvers:
Let students solve problems, have and test ideas, debate and question, not just cram-and-pass.

Anonymous said...

Great interview T! Dis is inspiring......

Anonymous said...

Great interview T! Dis is inspiring......

t said...

Thanks Sam. I can't wait to do another the kitchen working on this.

t said...

@Chude recently published "Are We The Turning-Point Generation?"
Have you seen it?
More on Chude Jideonwo

Next week, will publish the third episode of Six-Questions. The second was founder Kunmi Otitoju, in 2013.

Previously on UpNaira