It is incredible, but factual! Dreams do come true!
Chioma Mordi is the CEO, Enviouse Ventures, the parent company of Enviouse Events, an event management company which is rapidly becoming the one-stop place in Lagos State, Nigeria’s thriving metropolis for those who wish to organize world-class events, free of the attendant hassles.
A wife and Administrator, Chioma shares her recipe for success, her passion for events planning and tips for aspiring planners.
I would read this if I were you!
KA: Would I be mistaken to state that at some point, event management in Nigeria became a fad, the trendy occupation for non-career women?
You are not far from the truth. Event management in recent times has taken a turn from what it used to be. However, I will say it is an occupation not only for the non-career woman but for women and men who are passionate about happy events.
KA: Is it the lucrative venture everyone seems to believe it is?
Event management can be indeed very lucrative depending on the level of jobs you get. You have to build your network for sustainability. Remember your network is your net-worth.
KA: Did you have prior experience or work for an Events company before taking the boldly entrepreneurial step of starting yours?
No! I did not work in any event management outfit before starting mine. I developed my passion for event management and also gained experience by organizing several very high profile events for my company. I also helped friends and relatives to organize their weddings, birthday parties, anniversaries, engagements, etc. All this I did without a formal platform., I was just interested in people being happy with the way an event was co-ordinated. My husband who was carefully watching how passionately I was doing the jobs then advised and encouraged me to take it to another level; he saw an opportunity for me to make more money from a passion. That was how Enviouse Events Ltd was born!
KA: Skill they say is refined talent…would you say you possess both in matters related to events management?
Oh very true. I manage events with ease. However, the place of hard work should not be taken out of the equation.
KA: Enviouse Events; what’s in a name? What are the scope of your services/products?
Enviouse, is pronounced “Envy house” – I have always wanted to do things differently, things that will make people ask questions about it, no matter what it is.
At Enviouse Events Ltd, we are focused on the management of events from start to finish, ensuring our clients are happy with the way we carry out our responsibilities. We work for both corporate and social events doing event coordination, Public Relations, etc.
The umbrella company, Enviouse Ventures also undertakes interior decoration for homes and offices, and a gift service for all seasons.
KA: In 5 years, what unquestionable trait/service would the Enviouse Events brand be associated with?
Event management training courses – we plan to start a vocational training programme of event management, strategic event planning, PR, event marketing and more.
KA: Most industries have some sort of association or the other; are you registered with any? Are there benefits to such membership?
We are not yet registered with any association or group yet. We probably would when the opportunity arises.
KA: Who would you say has been a mentor-figure to you? Business & otherwise?
While I am simply enjoying the Grace of God; My Husband and my Boss. They keep encouraging me to become better.
KA: Operating in the bustling Lagos metropolis must ensure you always have a full plate? Any plans to expand?
Yes, we have plans to expand. We are guided by a plan, when we get to the period where we need to expand we sure will do. While we have a vision to become a national and even global establishment, being reliable is very key for us.
KA: On Entrepreneurship: You worked a white-collar, 8-6 job; was it a difficult transition to make or have you always been the adventurous, innovative, lets-start-something kind of person?
Yes it was very difficult because I am juggling my business venture with my job and it has been very tasking. My strength has been in the ability God has given me to plan in all things. Another thing one requires is humility; it will bring good people your way in business. When your team trusts you, success is guaranteed because they will always be ready; though that does not mean you won’t have the ones with annoying attitudes.
KA: There are allegedly several financing schemes for SME’s; did you take advantage of these, bootstrap or borrow?
I didn’t borrow. My savings helped to settle early bills.
KA: People do things for several reasons; passion, profit, both or more. Do you find fulfillment in your work, and is your passion paying dividends?
I find immense fulfillment. It is more of a passion for me and it is paying dividends.
KA: A typical work day for Enviouse Events is…
Meetings with clients and service providers, shopping for accessories, research for venues, etc.
KA: What are your biggest events/clients so far?
Three receptions to commemorate the conferment of the Senior Advocate of Nigeria- one in Abuja and two in Lagos-, book presentations, numerous weddings, a corporate dinner in honor the Vice chairman of ExxonMobil…
KA: I love to plan and organise; I think events management is for me; what do I do next? Advice from an experienced hand to a newbie?
Start building up your skills by planning one or two occasions, maybe do a friend or relative’s event for free; whilst putting in your very best (seek support where necessary) and open yourself to great ideas. Working/volunteering with a professional will help you become better. But most importantly, be able to think outside the box. Creativity is very key in this business.
KA: An Event Manager should be…a good cook?
Being an Event Manager doesn’t really imply that you have to be involved with the cooking but it is an added advantage if you are a good cook, it helps you recruit splendid cooks for your jobs. Besides, there are a lot skills required which I will term as ‘specialized skills’; you must have excellent communication skills, be well organized and be able to juggle multiple responsibilities – you have events to focus on as well as your business and professional meetings. You also need good marketing skills to encourage guests to attend conventions, or be knowledgeable about product launches or business grand openings. Also considering the fact that you have to work with different clients, you have the responsibility of getting familiar with how your clients work and the task of managing all categories of people like your staff and vendors.
KA: Infrastructural deficits are the bane of entrepreneurs; if you were President for a day, what one policy would you implements to assist budding entrepreneurs?
While I would focus on the youth, putting in place policies and an effective support system that will aid productivity for the would-be entrepreneurs will be a major focus. I observed that our youth need good quality programs because they are still very agile and creative in their thinking and if they get the required support through creating an enabling environment to express and nurture their creativity, the society will become a lot better. What we need is having businesses that are sustainable, so there’s a great need to fight corruption in all places.
KA: On a lighter note, folks usually say that the Igbo-speaking tribe of Eastern Nigeria ‘love’ and are obsessed with the pursuit of money; as an indigene would you agree?
The myth is true for sure. I will say they are business oriented and fortunately money comes with business.
KA: Inspire a young African in one sentence.
Follow your dream, lose not your focus and always remember good and hard work pays.