Oyeyemi decries lack of capacity building in industry

By Felicia Nwosu

Kolawole Oyeyemi, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Axiom Intel Nigeria Limited, has decried the lack of capacity building by organisations in educating and teaching staff new skills due to the  fear they might leave and take those skills elsewhere.

Oyeyemi stated this in an exclusive interview with MARKETING EDGE while pointing out some of the challenges confronting the industry in recent times. According to the former president of the Advertisers Association of Nigeria (ADVAN), development of personnel and training are essential components of achieving efficiency, organizational revenue and competitiveness. He argued that companies that make their employees stagnate because they fear losing them will definitely lose them eventually.

“A long time ago, the industry, I am not putting the blame on the overall sector, but I am saying that different people at different time, stopped training. I am not talking about a one-day training or course, real training of personnel within the industry. Looking at the new technologies and new thinking emerging in the industry, new thinking, if you are not investing in people because you think they will leave you, people do leave. What then happens is that you are actually creating a death of intellectual capacity in the industry in the long run. What happens is that you are short-changing the entire industry and that has been happening for almost 15 years now,” he said.

The former general manager, consumer marketing at MTN, advised organisations to create an empowering environment that will equip staff irrespective of where they move to, as long as they are still creating value within the industry ecosystem with such training.

“If you train them and they leave you, are they still creating value within the larger scope of the marketing communications industry? Yes. They left your organisation? Yes. But stopping the training because of the possibility of them leaving will affect the quality of industry output ultimately,” Oyeyemi noted.

The alumnus of Columbia Business School revealed that dearth of capacity building among organisations is not a current trend, and that its devastating effect is also telling on the industry.

“For me, it began to show-up 10 years ago when we were engaged with an average account manager or director. That is not the way it should have been, but you can’t blame the person because of the intellectual dearth that the person has. What led to it was a case where clients had a marketing problem and looked at it as a communication problem, because that was all they knew. ‘To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail’, and that has been going on for 10-15 years now,” he said.


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