Nigeria’s Top 10 Executive Leadership Coaches

Coaching is originally associated with sports but the corporate world has copied and turned it into a big business idea as it did with ‘strategy’ it took over from the military. The business world has a good record of turning into a goldmine whatever it copies to the extent that with time it appears as if it really invented it. This is fast becoming true of leadership coaching in Nigeria and around the world.

The concept of coaching in sports is simply striving for achieving superior performance. This is needed to realize the personal goals of the sportsman. The concept of high performance through coaching is no longer limited to sportsmen.

Leadership coaching has become a powerful tool that applies the same concept of consistent, high-performance in the boardroom, in business management and even in pursuit of personal goals. Essentially, a leadership coach helps leaders in any areas of life and work to achieve high-performance.

Coaching is all about getting the talented trained. This is what happens in sports: the best talented hire the best coach. Chicago Tribune considered the question of who exactly seeks out a coach and answered that it is “winners who want more out of life”. According to Time Magazine, they do because coaching “concentrates on where you are today and how you can reach your goals”.

Succeeding in life has long been identified as a function of talent and training. The talented but not trained is said to have a big chance of failure. But even without much talent, the trained is given a huge chance of success.

When the talented is trained, he is rated unstoppable. In leadership, the talented and trained still need coaching. The coach is the one who knows the trade secrets and has the expertise to remove the obstacles in the way of the leader attaining set goals.

Effective coaching of top management is becoming the way forward to deal with economic challenges jolting business organizations to desperately seek ways of survival and defiant growth tactics. In the evolving socio-economic environment of a shrinking global business space, a coach has become an essential requirement for people and businesses to excel.

Also, with the growing economic and social challenges of the 21st century, including the arrival of the millennials at the workplace, the need for holistic leadership styles that allow for autonomy, competence and relatedness of a modern-day worker has arisen.

This permits a collaborative and empowering approach to corporate leadership that points team members towards their respective resourcefulness and insight. Corporate culture is therefore shifting from command and control towards freedom and empowerment at both management and employee levels.

Leadership coaching is therefore emerging rapidly as a fundamental requirement of every organization – to leverage on intrinsic motivation and people-centred approaches to drive employees toward a greater sense of fulfillment and engagement.

The growing impact of coaching on performance has been strongly linked to its holistic approach and ability to create an environment that leverages on human potential. Its high impact is traced to sparking a greater level of intrinsic motivation, which is considered essential for fostering human potential, people development, performance and wellbeing.

Experts agree that coaching has proved beneficial as a multi-faceted tool for implementing business strategies and achieving organizational goals through its focus on employee performance and productivity. A survey by the International Coach Federation and Human Capital Institute has shown that coaching – whether at leadership development or employee engagement, exerts an all-round effect on an organization’s performance.

McKinsey & Company found in its survey that intrinsic motivation led to a 32 percent increase in employee commitment to work and 46 percent increase in job satisfaction. Increased motivation is estimated to save the United States’ economy up to $450 billion annually in labour productivity.

Coca-Cola HBC Russia leveraged on the power of coaching in response to lower-than-expected employee engagement and a prevalence of a command-and-control management style. It reported that coaching accomplished for it what no other leadership development modality could. These include a significant increase in employee engagement, reduced employee turnover, increased innovation, enhanced interpersonal relationship within teams and higher levels of trust.

A growing number of people and organizations in Nigeria are springing up, opting for a career and business in leadership coaching and public speaking – that looks very much like an emergent goldmine. Industry leaders agree that indeed it is a goldmine in the making following the lead of countries like the United States where a speaker can earn as much as $300,000 for an engagement depending on his level of experience and expertise.

For Nigeria, the players here are yet scratching the surface of an industry at the base of its take off. Industry pioneers have done a lot of developmental work that has cleared the way for rapid growth in demand for leadership coaching and inspirational speaking in the country. 

The corporate world is getting increasingly convinced that since leaders have the responsibility to provide direction even in the midst of many uncertainties, they need to have a good sense of direction themselves.

Top 10 Magazine’s research into the emerging leadership coaching industry in Nigeria reveals that it is truly a business getting set for explosive growth. A high impact of leadership coaching is increasingly manifest in corporations, employees and self-employed people.

Also, there is a high rate at which leadership coach is being churned out – showing a two-dimensional growth in the trainers and the trained. The trends indicate high prospects for leadership coaches taking the business far beyond borders.

Records show the lowest cost margins seen in business endeavours across sectors and industries and conversely the highest profit margins imaginable in services delivery. A combination of rapid growth and high profit margin places leadership coaching above real estate in where the biggest wealth creation can be expected to happen in Nigeria over the next five years.

Niyi Adesanya
Chief Executive Officer, Fifthgear Plus Consulting

Dr. Niyi Adesanya is a consultant, business strategist, founder of The Speaker Academy, Marketplace Academy and chief executive officer, FifthGear Plus Consulting. He easily stands out as one of Nigeria’s leading pragmatic and inspirational speakers, a leading voice on leadership transformation and youth empowerment.

Over the years, he has provided training, consulting and business re-engineering services to top ranking organizations across Nigeria. According to him, his clients include at least one of top three organizations in major sectors of the economy. He is a major contributor to effective corporate governance in Nigeria in many companies where serves on the board.

Adesanya did not set out with the mind of becoming a public speaker, where he has excelled today. “I was just someone that got the call of God upon his life to restore hope and confidence back to the body of Christ and faithfully pursued it.

“My evolvement started with the realization I was more of a teacher than a pastor; then my mentor Sam Adeyemi told me he feels I should be doing what John Maxwell is doing in America right here in Nigeria and I should brand for the corporate world. I bless God that I listened to him because that advice smoothened my transition”, he said.

For more than fifteen years, he devoted himself to researching and studying leadership and how to apply it in the entrepreneurial space. Adesanya is a faculty member of various institutions in Nigeria, including Daystar Leadership Academy and the C.I.T.C. Leadership Centre.

He developed and executed a competitiveness upgrade concept that helped a telecoms company strengthen its connection to its target customers leading to a massive sustainable boost in their income within a 5-year period.

Adesanya’s professional experience has seen the transformation of individuals and multinational organizations with results of increased effectiveness and productivity to show for it. “Having trained over 35,000 people on leadership, my concepts have widely been adopted and endorsed as relevant, practical and result-oriented”, he said.

He specializes in the areas of executive coaching, leadership development and management consulting. His key competencies include business strategy, team-building, public speaking, change management and organizational development.

He is also competent in, work-life blending, self-mastery and personal effectiveness, performance strategies, conflict resolution and management. He is the man to look for in the areas of people management and emotional intelligence, problem-solving and decision-making and he has mentored many in his field of competence.

With an average of over 100 presentations annually to local and international audiences, Adesanya has been recognized as one of Nigeria’s foremost inspirational speakers and a leading voice on leadership transformation in the country. He has an enviable record of speaking in over 80 tertiary institutions and delivering keynote speeches to top officials of corporate institutions across sectors and industries.

Part of his engagements is the training of senior lawyers across the country on public speaking and presentation. He has been a Brand Ambassador with Etisalat (9mobile) during which he toured over 80 higher institutions across 30 states of Nigeria, speaking to an average of 2,000 youth per occasion.

He is the convener of the acclaimed interactive platform “Meeting Point”, which linked up luminaries in various industries and visionaries aspiring to make their marks in chosen fields. The platform helped to place the youth on the right trajectory in career and development. 

He launched his flagship programme – the Niyi Adesanya Leadership Bootcamp in 2018 – an annual workshop that provides managers, supervisors, team leads, C-suite executives, directors and entrepreneurs with hands on tools to enable them best manage systems, process and people effectively, inspire teams, guide change initiatives, navigate the complexities and politics in managing internal and external stakeholders.

Adesanya shares widely his knowledge of improving corporate and individual performances. “I have a formula that has helped to improve performance as an individual: it is very simple and applicable. I call it the individual competitiveness formula and it is thus, what you know + how you express it multiplied by who you know and who knows you”, he said.

He explains that two types of knowledge are required by anyone aspiring to improve performance. One is knowledge about one’s physiological and psychological makeup. The other is knowledge about one’s environment, career, community, people, business and so on.

“Afterwards, you must express those two kinds of knowledge creatively, confidently and with an impeccable communication skill”, he stressed.

His yardstick for measuring the success of a leader is how many of his followers he is able to turn to leaders. Turning followers to leaders, he believes, is what leadership development is all about. He identifies culture as one big barrier to personal and organizational, even national performance improvements.

For him, the task of leadership development is to get the individual or the organization to change the culture – the way they think and how they do things. One major step towards personal and corporate performance improvement, according to him, is to focus on the way people think and change it.

He is the author of three books: The Speaker, Leadership Quadrant and Individual Competitiveness. His best-selling book – The Speaker, is reputed to be a stand-alone course on the art and enterprise of public speaking, which serves as a step-by-step guide to oratory breakthrough.

Pat Utomi
Founder, Centre for Values in Leadership

Prof. Pat Utomi, founder, Centre for Values in Leadership, is a prominent professor of political economy and management expert. He is a top name in leadership coaching in Nigeria with one of the most international groundings and exposures in the profession.

He is highly knowledgeable in virtually every area of the functioning of business and economy and one of the most respected consultants in leadership development thoughts and strategy in Nigeria and beyond.

He has an extensive knowledge that cuts across many fields and geography with an academic background that ranges from policy economics, business administration, political science to mass communication. 

He is an internationally acclaimed expert in the political economy of many countries from Africa, Latin America to Asia. He is a reputed name on the international speaking circuit with rare expertise on the subjects of growth economics, comparative development economics, leadership, the curse of oil and China’s economic surge and growing influence in Africa.

Utomi has a background and diversity in professional development that is hardly matched in both education and career, making him a model of what he teaches. He hit the tops in several different endeavours all the way from the classroom to the policy making corridors in corporate and government institutions.

He finished his secondary school education at the age of 15 and enrolled at the Federal School of Arts and Science in the interim to attain the minimum age of 17 for university admission. He graduated from University of Nigeria Nsukka in mass communication at the age of 21. He earned two Master degrees and a Ph.D. from Indiana University, USA at 26.

He was engaged to provide consultancy services on some public policy papers from which he attained a Presidential Advisory position at the age of 27. He became one of Nigeria’s top managers in manufacturing before his 33rd birthday. He attained professorship and global acknowledgement as a leading scholar in business, political economy and media studies in his forties. 

His first publication in a revered international journal appeared in 1981 in a European Journal Gazette.  He stands out as the first presidential candidate in Nigeria to be formally endorsed by such renowned scholars as the Nobel Laureate Prof. Wole Soyinka and Prof Sam Aluko, among others. This is a bid to actualize his ideals in political leadership for which he founded Concerned Professionals, which was a pressure group against-military rule.

He was appointed professor of social and political economy, environment of business and entrepreneurship in 2003. He has been a scholar-in-residence at Harvard Business School and the American University, Washington. He is a fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants of Nigeria and pioneer entrepreneurship teacher at Lagos Business School – Pan African University, where he was director of The Centre for Applied Economics. 

He has played developmental roles on key private sector organizations such as Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the National Council of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Employers Consultative Association. 

He is a dependable name for collaborative works with the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington and Chatham House in the United Kingdom.  He has also written commissioned papers for the UK’s DFID, including the latest collaboration with colleagues from Oxford on the political economy of growth in Nigeria.  He is a visiting scholar at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Utomi is a business builder, who has founded or co-founded leading companies in financial services, ICT, media and agriculture. He was behind the springing up of such companies as Linkserve – Nigeria’s first ISP, Socket works –the pioneer e-government systems developer in Nigeria and Business Day – Nigeria’s first daily business newspaper.

He created LBS monthly executive briefing breakfast and hosted it for its first 10 years. He inspired the founding of the Centre for Entrepreneurship Studies of LBS (now EDC) after a 1996 visit to the Sole C Snyder Centre at Wharton, in Philadelphia. He is the creator of Patito’s Gang, a television talk show.

Apart from the Centre for Values in Leadership, Utomi also coordinated the establishment of several civil society groups on good governance and accountability in Nigeria. These include Transparency International in Nigeria, the Concerned Professionals and the Restoration Group.

Utomi also belongs to many professional bodies as a distinguished fellow, including Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, the Institute of Directors (Nigeria), Nigeria Economic Summit Group, Nigeria Economic Society and Institute of Strategic Management, Academy of Entrepreneurship Studies.

He is the author of several management and public policy books, including the award-winning Managing Uncertainty: Competition and Strategy in Emerging Economies, 1998 and the 2006 book Why Nations are Poor. His other books include Critical Perspectives in Political Economy and Management; To Serve is to Live; Business Angel as a Missionary and four other books that are collections of his published works on leadership.

Fela Durotoye
Founder, VIP Consulting Gemstone

Dr. Olufela Durotoye, founder VIP Consulting Gemstone, is one of Nigeria’s pioneer leadership and business strategists and motivational speakers. He has to his name more than 27 years of active service as a coach and consultant for governmental agencies and leading organizations in banking, oil and gas, telecommunications and manufacturing.

He is renowned for expertise in culture transformation, service leadership and workforce activation. He has assisted companies from different sectors of the economy to satisfy their quest for phenomenal service leadership culture and corporate transformation management.

He ventured into entrepreneurship in 2000 when he set up VIP consulting Limited, which gained speedy acceptance in customer and human management in Nigeria. In seven years, he transformed the company to a social enterprise rebranded as Visible Impact Limited, catering for industry leading names in banking and financial services, oil and gas, telecommunications, manufacturing, governments and public sector institutions and international organizations such as the European Union, Nigeria’s office and the Economic Community of West African States.

He is also president of Gemstone Nation Builders Foundation, a non-profit, non-governmental organization that set out to train the youth towards transformational leadership and social change.

He has a robust educational background that equipped him for outstanding leadership role in Nigeria. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science with economics and a master’s degree in business administration from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. He is an alumnus of John F. Kennedy School of Government Executive Education programme of Harvard University. 

He also attended the High Impact Leadership for a better society programme at Yale University and is a certified leadership coach of the John Maxwell team.  He also attended the Future Candidate programme at the Leadership Institute, Arlington in the United States of America.

He completed the executive seminar programme on strategy, innovation and governance at the Lagos Business School in 2015. His trainings were complemented by a supernumerary police training programme at the Nigerian Police Training College where he passed out with a distinction.

The police training programme is his practical demonstration of his firm belief that effective law enforcement will play a vital role in achieving national development and social stability. 

Durotoye is at the forefront of the “Building a New Nigeria” movement. It is his business as well as his passion for mentoring and nation-building with the objective of building future leaders – which is key to Nigeria’s economic and social transformation.

He is behind a number of notable projects being operated under the Gemstone Group, which he founded as a leadership development institution. His mission is to raise a generation of leaders that are empowered, motivated and stirred to operate with natural excellence.

More than 10,000 youth have been trained under the project. Leaders of excellence and exemplary values being churned out are expected to take on the task of building Nigeria into a highly desirable nation to live in by the end of December 2025.

He is also the founder of the Fela Durotoye Company, from which he coaches over 600 CEOs and top business executives. He also set up the FelaDurotoye Leadership Network where he currently mentors over 15,000 leaders in business, enterprise, education, religion and the professional service sectors.

The leadership coaching project is extended to primary and secondary schools through Gemstone Leadership Clubs in over 300 schools as well as tertiary institutions through Gemstone Leaders ConnectNetwork in more than 70 campuses across Nigerian universities. There is also Gemstone Leadership Corpnetwork, which activates recent graduates on the National Youth Service Corp programme to engage is community transformation projects across 30 states of the federation.

He is a guest lecturer on Ethical Leadership at the prestigious Stanford University Seed Programme to CEOs of businesses with operations across the African continent.

He has championed a number of national transformation projects, including what became the largest urban renewal project in Nigeria’s history known as Mushin Makeover – under which he mobilized more than 2,000 volunteers to paint 296 houses across seven streets of the Mushin suburb of Lagos free of charge to the owners and residents of the buildings.

The Mushin Makeover project provided an opportunity for training of over 100 unemployed youth by Berger Paints Plc in the art and techniques of painting. Out of the project, the trained youth have become vibrant painters empowered to earn their living.

Another of Durotoye’s projects – Gemstone Global Reading Festival had over 12,000 students across 18 state capitals in Nigeria as well as in nine countries across Africa, Europe and the USA – all read out aloud from their various locations selected sections of his book 17 Secrets of High-Flying Students at the same moment in time across several time zones. 

The project, which was aimed at enhancing the reading culture, involved a donation of 17,000 copies of his book – 17 Secrets to students from public schools across the nation. He holds a world record for non-stop autographing of 10,000 copies of his book in one-seating over a period of 8 hours and 43 minutes -the largest number of books autographed by one author.

Other leadership and personal transformation projects include his tour of tertiary institutions aimed at encouraging academic and non-academic staff to strive for academic excellence by improving the standard of communication and process of knowledge transfer.

An acclaimed facilitator and motivational speaker,Durotoye constantly graces various management and leadership retreats in Nigeria and beyond. He was a top speaker at ECOWAS Regional Youth Conference, the inaugural Nigerian American Business Forum and the Platform Nigeria, among others.

He was unanimously elected a consensus candidate by a coalition of 11 presidential aspirants under the umbrella of the Presidential Aspirants Coming Together in the 2019 presidential election. His aspiration for the office of the president is borne out of his conviction that the best way to serve his nation’s interest is to do so from the nation’s highest office.

He is the author of over 22 audiobooks and paperbacks, including the renowned book 17 Secrets of High-Flying Students.

Lanre Olusola
Founder, Olusola Lanre Coaching Academy

Dr. Lanre Olusola, who is widely known as The Catalyst, is founder, Olusola Lanre Coaching Academy and executive director, Ebony Life Television. He is an ASET U.K certified life coach with years of experience that have earned him the reputation as Africa’s foremost life coach and cognitive behavioral psychologist.

His expertise is in coaching individuals and organizations towards behavioural change needed to take them from where they are to where they desire to be. He then quickens his clients with exceptional problem solving, motivational, human developmental, leadership and management skills.

Since its inception, the academy has facilitated the growth process of thousands of individuals and groups through training, workshops, strategies and more.

He had expansive studies in the fields of psychology, neuro-linguistic programming, performance improvement management, human cognitive behavioral psychology, meta medicine, emotional freedom techniques, matrix reimprinting, among others.

Olusola trained as an engineer at the University of Lagos where he obtained a B.Sc. (Hons) in Structural Engineering and Project Management in 1990. He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School, Boston Massachusetts USA where he studied governance for organizational excellence and business strategy.

He holds a Master’s degree in Coaching and Behavioural Change Psychology from Henley Business School. He also holds a doctorate degree in philosophy in coaching and mentoring from Oxford Brookes University.

His work experience is as versatile as his training, cutting across disciplines and geographical boundaries, giving him a 360-degree experience in major industries. He has worked with several organizations within Nigeria and across Africa, including the World Bank, the UK Government through the DFID and the British Council. He has worked in Ericsson, Total Nigeria, Argentil Capital and Ebony Life Television.

He has also worked at Guaranty Trust Bank, First Bank of Nigeria, Stanbic IBTC, FCMB and FBN Capital. His wide career coverage extended to the Nigerian Stock Exchange and the government.

His coaching academy is on a mission to help individuals and organizations achieve their goals and become the best version imaginable of themselves. He adopts the most experiential and extensive coaching tools to facilitate the growth and success journey of his clients.

His academy collaborates with strategic partners and the top UK certifying organizations to offer certified training courses to clients. The latest numbers show that the academy has certified over 500 coaches, workplace psychologists and neuro-linguistic programming practitioners, who are making waves in their various industries.

Olusola offers a wide range of programmes and services from psychology to therapy, coaching and keynote speaking. His exceptional coaching ability is built upon his training and work experience that essentially cover the waterfront.

He has a unique approach that seeks to transform one mind at a time by being as specific and detailed as possible in getting his life changing messages across to the people. He uses a variety of platforms such as social media, radio and television, seminars, workshops and more to ensure no one is left out of his life changing messages.

Over the years, he has positioned his brand on the basis of reinforcing consistency to exert a catalytic effect that facilitates a positive change in individuals and organizations to achieve results.

He developed the ESP and VSP 5-star performance models that have been used by the Stanford University’s Affiliate Faculty – the Institute for Venture Designs and globally to alter complex behavioural, traditional and cultural codes, programmes and paradigms.

Olusola offers the world the Integrative and Transformative Catalysis he has created, mastered and deployed for providing people and organizations, families and groups of different forms and sizes a platform to reach their goals.

He is acclaimed for pioneering the life coaching industry in Nigeria and creating the first wholly integrative coaching academy in West Africa.He launched Africa’s first digital coaching platform, CoachME Online in 2019. He is the founder of Life Coaches Association of Nigeria and a member of board of trustees of International Coach Federation, Nigeria.

His academy makes a standing promise, which is to provide a unique opportunity for everyone to give meaning to his or her career and for businesses to achieve organizational goals. It assures that its coaching programmes run on some of the world’s most effective coaching tools, such as the TGROW-Model.

With over two decades on the coaching job, Olusola is a certified General Electric Executive Coaching Master Trainer and its regional Croton Ville Executive coaching faculty member. He is a senior fellow of the Institute of Professional Managers and Administrators of Nigeria and fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants.

He is the author of The Money Book – Lessons from The Rich and Poor, a book that also has an audio version. He is the host of the radio show, Be All You Can Be.

Austin Okere
Founder Of CWG Plc and the Ausso Leadership Academy

Mr. Austin Okere is founder of CWG Plc and the Ausso Leadership Academy known as the Entrepreneurs’ Hub. At CWG, he is in charge of the largest systems integration company in sub-Saharan Africa, recognized as Global Growth Company by the World Economic Forum.

At Ausso Leadership Academy, he preaches shared prosperity. His mission is to mentor entrepreneurs and business leaders to optimize the jobs they create in order to enable shared prosperity and sustain it. He has provided the incubator for high-flying business executives and high-performing entrepreneurs able to institutionalize and grow their businesses geometrically.

He equips them with a combination of tested methods and the grooming of experienced global mentors, who have passed the same way and succeeded. The academy has a record of having mentored 120 delegates from about 40 businesses and impacted over 1,200 attendees with the support of 64 champions, who came to share inspirational experiences to motivate the delegates.

Okere has an unshaken confidence that entrepreneurs and business leaders, who have passed through his academy, will achieve double-digit growth in revenue a year after impact and would have imbibed a code of governance and a culture of succession and legacy. The expectation is borne out of his central purpose, which is to mentor entrepreneurs to institutionalize their businesses geometrically.

Ausso Leadership Academy stands ready as strategic partners to business leaders with a proven track record for transformative performance to show for reliability. It takes a reassuring stance that “as highly experienced leaders, we are passionate as you are, about delivering extraordinary results”!

The academy helps businesses to set performance ambition and put in place a system that drives and delivers on these commitments. It accomplishes this through a combination of practical tools and technology that focus on behaviours, process and performance. The ability to apply its tools directly to clients’ business with convincing results is a clear promise of the academy.

Its unfailing key to delivering success lies in its approach in focusing on a few critical areas that produce a disproportionate effect and changing their configuration to unlock the delta between business as usual and extraordinary results.

Through coaching, mentoring and practical support, Okere’s academy equips business leaders and teams to step up and deliver outstanding business results regardless of the obstacles and uncertainties in the business space. The ability to transform performance results has been tested and proven in a number of leading organizations across industrial groupings.

The leadership development programmes of the academy are organized under four broad areas for execution. The first is corporate impact, which involves strategy development, strategy execution and leadership development.

The actions here set direction through market evaluation, detail operational plan and empower leaders by coaching and feedback on the how, where and when – which constitute the essential ingredients of corporate success.

The second is corporate virtual, designed to help corporate players build a deep leadership bench strength, inculcating a culture of performance, accountability, pace and agility in a highly autonomous and aligned environment. This is delivered through interlinked and interactive sessions, designed for different levels of management to address different needs critical in shaping up the business for the present and the future.

These programmes are designed to avoid poor execution, lack of alignment or inability to priorities – which hider the realization of corporate goals. The academy provides the drive-in corporate plans and keeps them on track towards the goals.

They are designed to help clients build the business model and the operating plan around the business idea. They are to provide a guide to those working in remote locations to prevent business dysfunctions.

Ausso Leadership Academy also runs Masterclass programme, which is its flagship product. It is a hands-on programme designed to impact entrepreneurs and business leaders via a powerful and sustainable learning experience. The programme is open to business leaders and entrepreneurs.

The fourth set of programmes is mentorship sessions, which is a practical and experiential engagement. It is designed to prepare high-performance entrepreneurs for leadership role as CEOs or executive directors in a large organization. It is also meant for an entrepreneur to launch or scale a business.

Okere is a graduate of Computer Science from the University of Lagos and holds an MBA degree from the International Graduate School of Management (IESE), Navara, Spain. He is a member of several professional and leadership bodies, including ICT Advisory Board, Nigerian Competitive Council and Nigerian Economic Summit Group. He also serves on the Executive Committee of the Nigerian-South African Chamber of Commerce.

He was appointed to the Advisory Board of the Global Business School Network in Washington DC in recognition of his major contribution to the development of business education and knowledge transfer in Africa. He is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on innovation and entrepreneurship.

He is entrepreneur in residence at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Legatum Centre as well as Columbia University, New York, where he received special commendation for his mentorship role in the area of innovation and entrepreneurship.

He has taught at the United States International University in Kenya and has served as consultant to the Sustainable Development Goals, African Center in Rwanda. He is on the board of Globus Bank and serves on the Board of Trustees of Risk Management Association of Nigeria.

Okere is a fellow of the Nigerian Computer Society and serves on the governing council of the Institute of Directors of Nigeria as well as the advisory council of the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria.

Steve Harris
Chief Executive Officer, EdgeEcution

Dr. Steve Harris, chief executive officer EdgeEcution, is a highly sought-aftermanagement consultant, a motivational speaker and author, who has become a trusted authority in the fields of life coaching and business strategy.

He is a renowned turn-around expert, life strategist and inspirational corporate activator with incredible ability to rev up corporate productivity and get the value created all the way down to the bottom line. “I help high performance individuals and organizations bridge the gap between their potential and their performance, transforming their results”, he said.

He is reputed as one of Nigeria’s leading high-performance coaches and business strategists. He is also one of the most-followed, downloaded and quoted personal development trainers in the country.

Yet, his beginning was a polar opposite of the great success he parades. He is a typical example of one who was lost but found by one of those mentors, who refuse to give up on people. Dropped out of university twice but recovered and groomed by Fela Durotoye,CEO of VIP Consulting, Harris learned the trade in no time and broke free from the barriers that keep people back from unleashing their potentials and reaching their goals. 

His escape from the backyard of life into the living highway was the day he stood up to the task of training fresh graduates for a bank on behalf of his boss; not that he knew how but because no one else was available and the job could not wait. He ended it with a standing ovation.

Harris is a living model of a life transformed and now on a mission to transform people and businesses. He has designed, managed and facilitated several customer service and personal mastery training programmes, management and leadership retreats for several organizations.

“I assist my clients to plan and execute strategy to enhance their personal and corporate productivity. I’ve also designed, managed and facilitated several workforce activation and customer service programmes, management and leadership retreats”, he said.

He has become a top name for corporate transformation projects in several organizations across industries, including banking and financial services, oil and gas, ICT, manufacturing and more where he has managed streams of customer service, emotional intelligence, passion infusion and workforce activation training programmes.

These include a highly successful culture transformation project for the management and over 600 staff of West African Portland Cement now Lafarge Africa that grew the bottom line.

He championed a four-month culture transformation project for former Bank PHB now Keystone Bank Limited in 2007 that positioned it as the fastest growing bank. He also co-led a culture transformation project for the management of Ashaka Cement during which he solely handled the task of preparing a diagnostic report for the executive management of the company.

His leadership development projects also include a highly successful team building retreat for the management and over 500 staff of Multi Choice Nigeria.

Harris is passionate about helping people chase their greatness with ruthless execution but he is looking out for people who have the strength for the extra mile. “I’m tough on my clients because they come to me with a destination, they want to get to but they’ve never been. So, I have to be. Weak people shouldn’t call, email or sign-up for anything I print, deliver or discuss”. He said.

His specialties are in execution, culture transformation and customer service. He also excels in work force activation, life strategy and executive coaching.

His podcast has been rated among the top 15 in the training category in iTunes and has been downloaded over 200,000 times. His online courses have been taken by over 2,000 students and his weekly e-mails reach well over 3,000 people.

Harris is quite confident about what he does and the quality his clients can bet to get. “I’m exceptionally good at high performance coaching/advisory. I’m really good at what I do and not shy about it…”, he said.

He is a certified member of the International Coach Federation and a member of the Life Coaches Association of Nigeria. He is also a member of American Association of Small Business Consultants, Texas, USA and International Certified Consultants Association, Canada.

He has been recognized by the United Nations/YFP as a Young Ambassador for Peace due to his increased impact, inspiration and selfless service to the Nigerian youth.

Harris is counted among selfless Nigerians doing extraordinary things, whose value systems and actions have elevated as role models worthy of emulation.

He is the author of two books: From College Dropout to Corporate Sellout and From Friend to Fiancée.

Bankole Williams
Founder And Principal Consultant, LYD Consulting

Dr. Bankole Williams is founder and principal consultant, LYD Consulting, a firm of management consultants with a peculiar skill for assisting clients achieve superior performance in their businesses by inspiring and enhancing their people and organizations to achieve superlative results.

He is also principal consultant, Live Your Dreams Consulting Limited, which is on a mission to solve the problems of unemployment and underemployment through his foundation – Live Your Dreams Africa Foundation.

Through the foundation, he has attained great milestones in human capacity development and youth empowerment. He has empowered over 23,000 youth for productive engagements. The foundation created 682 jobs in Lagos in 2019 and has raised the bar to create 1,000 jobs across the six geo-political zones in Nigeria.

He set up the platform to challenge Africans to live their lives intentionally towards the achievement of their dreams. Through the platform, he showcases successful people in different walks of life, who have consciously moved against all odds, pursued their dreams to set up enterprises to the point of being celebrated for what they do.

He has successfully held six editions (2013 – 2018) of this initiative, gathering over 10,000 people to listen to successful people share true stories of how they unlocked their potentials in seemingly impossible conditions.

He is guiding people through the narrow path to success through which he once struggled, stumbled, frustrated and confused but then he learnt the lesson. “This thing which I learned; I have studied over the past five years. I have been obsessed with the information and I have immersed myself in it because I am persuaded it is the secret behind all success”, he said.

Williams is a consultant par excellence and a peak performance career coach, who has established a proven record of helping organizations develop their human capacity for increased productivity.

His sure deliverable is to empower employees to get their work done in less time so they can surpass employers’ financial targets. His career all the way has centred on understanding and optimizing human potential, beginning at Guaranty Trust Bank, where he discovered his passion for workforce activation and manpower development.

He was an invaluable member of the human resources team of the bank and played a central role in staff training. From there, he moved to Visible Impact, a consulting firm.

He assisted no less than 12 leading banks in Nigeria to develop and deploy solutions for long-term profitability and sustainability. He also provides consulting interventions for other major organizations, some of which include, Nigerian Communication Commission, World Bank, Oando and Konga. Others are Google, NLNG and Nigerian Stock Exchange.

He has facilitated various culture transformation projects, team bonding retreats, executive management retreats for major banks, oil and gas companies, manufacturing organizations, among others.

He is a master practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic programming, a UK certified life and career coach and a certified management consultant from International Council for Managing Consulting Institutes.

LYD Consulting makes a firm promise of creating that critical comparative advantage for its clients. Its service pillars are emotional intelligence, corporate culture infusion, personal effectiveness and workforce activation with particular focus on the areas of customer service delivery, peak performance, life and executive coaching.

The firm’s approach is to utilize consulting interventions such as retreats, surveys, telephone / branch assessments, corporate diagnostics as well as training and coaching interventions to inspire clients’ workforce to achieve what is perceived impossible.

It diagnoses the root causes of productive and sabotaging behaviours and proceeds to develop strategies and systems for repeat performance of productive behaviours that eliminate toxic/sabotaging patterns.

At LYD Consulting, Williams is committed to delivering consulting interventions that lead to transformational change. He has designed, managed and facilitated several customer service and personal/workplace mastery training programmes, including management and leadership retreats for several organizations.

He is an expert at delivering training solutions on product lines such as self-mastery, emotional intelligence, executive coaching, change management, business communication, team bonding, superior service delivery, leadership, selling skills, employability, enterprise development, etc.

He empowers graduates at After School Graduates Development Centre in partnership with the Lagos State Technical and Vocational Education Board with speeches on employability skills and enterprise development.

He has hosted radio programmes aimed at empowering business people with the skills necessary to run their businesses successfully. He has also facilitated career coaching sessions in partnership with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group and the JobMag Centre.

Williams is a fellow of the International Management Consultants Certification Board.

Olumide Emmanuel
Chief Executive Officer, Common Sense Group

Dr.Olumide Emmanuel, chief executive officer, Common Sense Group, is one of the world’s leading relationship experts, motivational speakers and wealth creation agents. He is an anointed servant of God and a man of multiple graces, spanning deep spiritual and business understandings.

He is a bible scholar with over 25 years of experience in the ministry. He is the overseer of the Truth of Calvary Ministries, which has a network of branches worldwide and the Senior Pastor and set man over Calvary Bible Church.

From both temporal and spiritual spheres of life, Emmanuel is committed to raising the next generation in every facet of life. He has defined for himself a life’s purpose- which is to raise Kingdom-minded, new breed of people without greed.

“I am primarily a teacher to connect people with God, with their destiny and make heaven. My major assignment is just to educate people on wisdom for all round success and wisdom to succeed in every area. For 15 years, all I have been doing is to show people what has worked for me. We empower and equip people to succeed and what has worked for me is what I’m using to help people.

“A lot of people have tried it and it has worked for them. In six-seven years alone, we have raised over 600 millionaires and also over a thousand people have become land owners. Some have become landlords. We are just empowering people” he said.

Emmanuel is an apostle in the marketplace, a role that often carries a ring of conflict of interests and objectives. Common Sense Group is involved in a number of businesses run through nine subsidiaries, including real estate, oil and gas, travel and tour, publishing, media, financial management and a lot more.

In church and outside church, the man of God is committed to his call to be a blessing to his generation. He shows people how to strike a balanced understanding of God’s purpose in wealth creation through hard work.

Emmanuel is a leading voice on personal, corporate and national transformation. He has a record of over three decades of transforming lives with a large mentorship programme that cuts across business, Christian ministry, marriage, relationship and family life. He is credited with raising some of the brightest minds in real estate, entrepreneurship and ministerial work and yet he is poised for higher heights in every direction.

He is a firm believer in Nigeria’s rising to greatness regardless of the many challenges facing the nation. His effort in bringing about a new Nigeria is his commitment to raising and empowering change agents, as the instruments of transformation. In pursuit of this purpose, he founded several non-governmental organizations such as Dynamite Forum International, The New Breed Club and the Olumide Emmanuel Foundation.

Emmanuel holds Executive Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Huddersfield in the UK and a Real Estate Executive Certificate with a special focus on capital markets, project finance, and business strategy from Harvard Business School in the United States. He also holds a doctorate degree in Entrepreneurial Leadership.

Robust educational background combined with deep research works has prepared him to handle multiple tasks and yet excel in all. He is a pastor, bestselling author, conference host, businessman, entrepreneur, investor, international motivational speaker, people’s builder and a wealth creation agent.

He runs numerous popular programmes – conferences, seminars and broadcasts for transforming lives and businesses. These include the daily “Pathway to Wealth” broadcast with millions of followers,the weekly “Success, Business, and Leadership School” where a new breed without greed is being bred,empowered and releasedand the monthly “School of Money Seminar” where he mentored thousands of participants for cooperative wealth.

There is also the wisdom series for singles and couples as well as the “How To” Seminars -how to be a bestselling author, how to be a millionaire, how to be an exceptional leader, how to be a success in life, how to build a successful business.

Emmanuel has come through a path strewn with many challenges, much of which had to do with money. “About 15-16 years ago, I was really frustrated; then I began to find out what it takes to succeed. It was that journey that led me into discovering teaching. And all the things I discovered, I applied in my own life”, he said.

Through the challenges what has kept him going is the joy to see lives changed.
He recalls that many people, who came to church jobless, wifeless, childless, houseless and vision-less have been transformed.

“You will see people that were confused; you will hear testimonies of people that were on drugs, prostitutes and now they are married with children. People that were jobless are now employers. “It’s really good to be a blessing to others” he said.

Emmanuel catechizes nine secrets for success, which are relationship with God – a life of obedience and integrity, continuous self-development, moving with the right people, hardworking and planning ahead. To these, he adds what he calls the four keys to all round success – dangerous holiness, dangerous prayer, dangerous giving and dangerous investing. “Those are the things that have helped me over the years”, he said.

His mentorship in wealth creation is simply to show people the reasons for wealth and poverty. He does by taking them out of ignorance, laziness and lack of action as a practical step to bridge the knowledge gap between the rich and the poor. He leads people to drop the mindsets and habits that tender to poverty and develop habits and mindsets that will make them rich.

He is a bestselling author of over 30 books widely read bykey operators in the local and global business and career spaces.

Sam Adeyemi
Founder, Daystar Leadership Academy

Pastor Sam Adeyemi is founder, Daystar Leadership Academy from where he has trained thousands of people in leadership for more than two decades. He is a pastor, teacher, author and life coach and serves as the senior pastor of Daystar Christian Centre where he is on a mission to raise men and women who would become role models in society.

He is also principal consultant of Sam Adeyemi GLC, Inc., a leading global leadership
consulting company located in Atlanta, USA. The consulting firm focuses on raising high impact leaders to shape the fortunes and destinies of nations.

A global conference speaker, Adeyemi has addressed first class audiences in key centres around the world, including the Global Leadership Summit, a global conference attended by over 400,000 leaders from 130+ countries. He is a mentor to hundreds of CEOs in Nigeria and around the world.

He is managing partner/CEO, BraveICONs Global where he leads a global team of experts to develop, implement, control and evaluate prosperity development solutions for a growing local clientele.

Daystar Leadership Academy was set up in pursuit of Adeyemi’s vision for the evolution of a new Nigeria.  This is in his conviction that ‘when you build the man, you can change the world’. The academy is a non-profit leadership and management development school with the vision to raise exceptional leaders and managers that would transform the world.

The leadership school, which operates through seminars, workshops and conferences, teaches leadership principles with the objective of developing a new generation of leadership for Nigeria and the world.

It offers basic certificated course in leadership, weekend leadership certificate course (basic and advanced), executive leadership course (basic and advanced) and basic leadership course for teenagers. More than 40,000 students have graduated from the academy since its inception in 2002.

Adeyemi is co-founder ofReal Estate Africa League, Real Estate for Real People TrustBravehearts Centre – a kingdom advancement platform,Let’s Play Ten-Ten Ltd/Gte, a social enterprise involved in developing shared prosperity across Africa through entrepreneurship development and socially inclusive education.

He is renowned as a prodigious executive, entrepreneurial and life coach, first-rate learning professional and a passionate proponent of the #ProsperityParadigm. Through the optimization of potentials, the platform is organized as an alternative worldview to effectively tackle poverty – which is the number one goal of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals as well as the World Bank’s major challenge.

He is president of Success Power International, which is a motivational and inspirational programme on radio, teaching life and success principles. It was formed as part of his move to the next level of his calling in ministry.

The platform broadcasts on radio and television – which reaches as far as Europe, Africa and the Middle East. It also reaches out to people through seminars, audio, video materials and books.

Success Power International is Adeyemi’s channel for expressing his passion to help people realize their life purposes. Through the programme, he has changed lives of millions of people around the world with knowledge and motivation they have applied to discover, develop, release and maximize their hidden potentials.

His broadcast, ‘excellent leadership’, features on Daystar Network Television and Word Network in the United States and more than 25 channels in Africa and Europe.

His technique is to raise and sustain the morale, strength and capability of the human spirit, thereby energizing people into actions that break through the usual barriers and challenges that keep the average person well below potentials.

Adeyemi holds HND in civil engineering from Kwara State Polytechnic, a Master of Arts degree in Leadership Studies from the University of Exeter, the UK and Doctor of Strategic Leadership from Regent University, Virginia, the USA.

He is a Harvard University Certified Consultant, NCFE (UK) Certified Coach, Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist [Managing Projects] and New Media Strategist trained as an International Youth Foundation/Samsung scholar at the School of Media & Communications of Pan-Atlantic University where he was president of the SRD Class of 2010.

He is Development Knowledge Facilitator trained by the British Council, World Bank and the Federal Government. He also holds a Nigerian Institute of Management [Chartered] Certificate of Proficiency in Management with a distinction in small business management.

He is a principal consultant at and focuses on executive coaching, leadership and business growth. He is the author of many books some of which are The Second Revolution, Wonders of Imagination, Think and Succeed, Start with What You Have, Ideas Rule the World, Success is Who You Are, Power to Achieve Success, Unlock Your Future and lots more.

Joké Coker
Chief Executive Officer and Lead Coach, Constellation Coaching Group LLC

Mrs. JokéCoker is CEO and lead coach, Constellation Coaching Group LLC, a Neuro-Linguistic Programming [NLP] licensed international coaching firm reputed for leading initiatives aimed at harnessing the power of the mind to help people be the best they could. The company’s key promise is to propel business executives to make better decisions and achieve improved results.

A licensed master practitioner of NLP and coach trainer, Coker is a member of the Psi Chi -the International Honor Society in Psychology and a member of the Forbes Coaches Council (an exclusive, invitation-only council for outstanding business and career coaches worldwide.

She has seen Constellation rise to a top-ranking coach trainer in Nigeria. The major goal, she said, is to ensure that “our clients become confident, authentic leaders. The exponential business results ensure they deliver at work and make them our walking billboards.”

The company offers three key products, which are coaching (executive and team coaching), counseling and coach training. It considers professional and personal coaching a key requirement in attaining standard leadership development training for elite executives and talented up-and-coming young managers.

Coaching is Coker’s prescription to anyone who wants to build the business and at the same time have a rewarding personal life. Her company makes a firm promise with its corporate coaching – which is to boost overall organizational results by helping staff work more effectively as a team.

“People need others to talk to, to help them clarify, focus and execute their goals. To become better is a common yearning”, she said.

The company brings in experts that work to clarify corporate goals, focus on what needs to be done and how best to do them, thereby moving plans swiftly from conceptualization to execution.

Constellation also offers coach training to corporate bodies, individuals and schools with the aim of giving people and organizations the chance to visualize their highest goals and stay on track to achieve them.

Products and services designed for schools are targeted at both the teachers and their pupils. These include workshops on teachers as coaches in digital age, parents as coaches and visiting psychotherapists for students and teachers in schools and the workplace. The training process is designed to help teachers gain the vital edge needed to make their work as educators better and more effective.

It also provides team synergy enhancement that identifies and resolves key challenges faced by teams, including trust and communication issues. This includes teams at board and operational levels – where the company promises to build in sustainable trust, inter-dependence and synergy that make operations seamless with high performance results.

Life coaching is also one of the company’s interventions with professionals trained to deal with all aspects of a client’s life. This ranges from personal and professional to health and relationships.

Peer coaching is another of the company’s services, which is designed to build up the leadership skills of coaches themselves. The young coaches are taught listening and communication skills as well as intervention skills to help with crises that may arise.

Parents’ coaching services provide the opportunity for people to learn improved parenting skills for the digital age children of the present time.

The company’s counseling services are provided by professionals trained to make profound impacts on the lives of individuals, families and communities. The service is designed to help people navigate difficult life situations, overcome pain and develop coping strategies against such incidents as death of a loved one, divorce, natural disasters, school stress, loss of jobs and/or mental health difficulties.

Coker also undertakes other services such as Group Assistance Programme, which is a fund dedicated to addressing personal problems in communities that cannot afford counseling costs. Freedom Friday Initiative is a corporate social responsibility programme where the company’s psychologist does an hour session with eight persons who feel stressed, anxious, depressed or helpless once every month at no cost.

There is also free mental health awareness talk under which the company’s clinical and counseling psychologists visit and talk to company staff members on mental well-being, especially as it affects the corporate world.

For being an internationally licensed NLP coach, Constellation is rated by industry experts as providers of the best route to learn the right skills and become part of the solution.

Coker holds B. Sc. degree from the University of Lagos, an MBA from Cranfield University (UK) and M. Sc. Psychology from Arizona State University USA. She has over 30 years of working experience, which include C-level positions in MTN Nigeria Communications, Guaranty Trust Bank and MoneyGram International.

She set out to build her company in 2017 with a mission to help people excel and dissolve their barriers with coaching services provided by licensed practitioners of NLP. She serves on various international boards, including Shelter Origins formerly Habitat for Humanity, Nigeria.