Ife’s trip gave her invaluable insight into management consulting
Ife Sarumi attended the Powerlist Foundation Deloitte Leadership Programme (PFDLP) in July 2014 and that certainly increased her confidence in leadership when the Londoner went to continue studying for her degree in Politics and Philosophy in Hull.
She is the founder and current president of the Women Empowered society at the University of Hull and when she and her dedicated team organised a careers event in April, named “Women Empowered Annual Careers Convention – The Importance of Entrepreneurship” one of the guest speakers was Claud Williams, CEO of his media consultancy company Dream Nation and Powerlist Foundation’s Chief Ambassador.
“Claud was the ideal person to motivate the young entrepreneurs,” says Ife. “He did an excellent job and everyone was captivated by his words of wisdom.” Claud emphasised the importance of maximising one’s networking field, knowing how to network and having relentless ambition, Ife says.
The other speakers at the careers event included computer games maestro Louis Deane of VISR and Diana Johnson, the MP for Hull who spoke about her career path after graduating, which included finance and law before politics. There was also a live video presentation from Freda Kocholla, a senior associate at PwC, who spoke about the benefits of applying for graduate roles after graduation.
Ife hopes to work as a management consultant after she graduates, but first she plans to take a year off after completing her studies to “explore opportunities outside the city of London”.
Besides the opportunity awaiting her in consulting, Ife has a strong entrepreneurial streak and since secondary school has been supplying people, such as catering staff to work at events, which she calls her small “events agency company”.
Becoming a politician is an ultimate goal for her and in a few weeks’ time she will be going to Nigeria to carry out some research for a dissertation on the topic of leadership in Africa.
Since meeting Veronica Martin at the PFDLP two years ago, Ife finds her always “very selfless and helpful”. She adds, “Veronica is always full of ideas on fundraising and logistics. She even reaches out to her own contacts to help. She is a diamond, a gem.”
Last October, Ife and her team came up with the idea of organising a trip to the London offices of a consulting firm with a group of Women Empowered members and after plenty of help with four other undergraduates, in early January they travelled the 190 miles from Hull on the Thursday, to attend the More London offices the following day. They were accompanied by Ife’s mentor Isaiah Osei-Baidoo, a consultant at PwC.
“It was stressful, I will not lie,” blogs Ife about the trip on their society website. “As it was the first official business trip for the society, there was a lot of pressure to execute it perfectly, because if this trip went well we would definitely be offered another opportunity to come back and that would be a big deal for Women Empowered and its future members. Although it was stressful, it was so rewarding at the end of it, that warm feeling of accomplishment, alongside the gratitude and joy expressed by the girls made all the stress worthwhile.”
The group were delighted with the interaction they had with senior members of PwC, who impressed them with their helpfulness and professionalism.
Claud Williams thoroughly enjoyed his trip to Hull for his presentation. He went on short notice when the original speaker was unable to make it, but still had a major impact. “I just tried to be as helpful as possible,” Claud says. “When I go to universities to give these types of talks I always try to remember how I felt when I was in their position and what I wanted to know.”
He used the opportunity to promote the Powerlist Foundation and Dream Nation and received positive feedback from the undergraduates who asked Claud “insightful questions” and seemed to have “lots of different aspirations”. Some wanted to go into the media, start personal blogs and others were keen to start their career journey.
Claud thought Ife “did a great job” adding: “Her team love her”. He also thought she prepared an excellent succession plan to hand over to the new team. “That is always a good sign of a leader.”