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Meet Olamide Okewuyi, the Head of the Channel Management team at AZA Finance, who has been an integral part of the company for the past two years. Olamide’s role involves nurturing and strengthening relationships with partners globally. Her expertise in fostering connections that transcend borders and create invaluable networks has been instrumental in driving business success and growth. In this interview, Olamide shares her journey at AZA Finance, the intricacies of her team, the qualities she seeks in potential candidates, and her sage advice for those aspiring to embark on a career in Channel Management.
Q: How long have you been at AZA Finance, and how would you describe your role?
A: I have been part of AZA Finance for the past two years. My journey with the company began as a manager focused on nurturing and strengthening relationships with our partners in Nigeria and across the West African corridor.
Over time, I’ve had the opportunity to evolve and expand my role within the company. Currently, I serve as the Head of the Channel Management team at AZA Finance, where we oversee and cultivate the relationships that the company has with a diverse array of financial and non-financial partners on a global scale.
As part of my role, I am responsible for managing partnerships in various ways.
One of my key duties is to ensure that our partners uphold all of the commitments outlined in their contracts.
In addition to managing partnerships, I am involved in continuously monitoring performance metrics across all corridors in which our organization operates. This consists of the analysis of key performance indicators, which helps us maintain a real-time pulse on the health and effectiveness of our partnerships.
Furthermore, my role extends to identifying, measuring, and mitigating risks associated with our partnerships. This collaborative endeavor necessitates working closely with various stakeholders within our organization. Beyond risk management, I ensure we work closely with partners to maximize their performance and capabilities and collaborate to optimize growth opportunities.
Q: Can you give us an overview of your team?
A: Absolutely. The team at AZA is made up of six members from different nationalities. Each team member is responsible for handling and coordinating partner activities within their jurisdiction, which includes East Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa, Francophone West Africa, the United States, Europe, and the rest of the world. The team’s primary responsibilities are to build strong relationships with partners, identify potential risks, work closely with stakeholders to provide solutions, establish clear and consistent communication with partners, and review the cost of sales to ensure competitiveness.
As the first point of contact with partners, the channel management team ensures that the company’s expectations are effectively and efficiently communicated within and outside the company. The team works closely with other departments in the company to continuously build partner redundancies, which helps reduce over-dependency, ensures business continuity, and promotes expansion.
Q: Are there specific skills you seek in candidates looking to join your team?
A: As a channel manager, it is crucial to prioritize customer satisfaction and work diligently to handle any inquiries, issues, or challenges promptly and efficiently.
Building friendly and mutually beneficial relationships with all stakeholders is a key indicator of great performance. Additionally, a successful channel manager should proactively identify opportunities for company growth and take advantage of them whenever possible.
Q: What is the best advice for someone starting their career in Channel Management?
A: Starting a career in any field requires flexibility and resilience. These two qualities enable one to adapt and learn everything necessary to become a professional. A positive attitude, the right mindset, staying informed about market trends, and fostering excellent interpersonal relationships are all essential for a successful career.