Entrepreneur and Author Adaora Mbelu is an Individual who’s setting the bar high for purpose-driven ideology in Africa.
Adaora is the founder of Socially Africa, an organization that’s nurturing a generation of individuals who aim to be solutions to existing and new problems occurring around them.
I interviewed Adaora a couple of days ago and it turned out to be quite an interesting conversation. Here’s our chat;
1. Can you tell me a little about yourself?
My name is Adaora Mbelu. I’m a bright light and purpose driver who is passionate about People, Innovation, and Impact. I am a director at Trellis Group, a company that specializes in brand development.
I am also the Founder of Socially Africa, an enterprise focused on breeding a generation of impact-driven individuals, through community development projects.
Before Trellis Group, I worked as a content director on the following projects; United Nations World Tourism Conference, Nigeria Centenary Awards, International Conference On Peace and Security. I also worked as the project manager for Freemantle Licensed TV Shows, Nigerian Idol and Nigeria’s Got Talent, where I was responsible for managing various aspects of the show such as branding and production.
I was the Corporate Communications Manager for OSMI during the FIFA World Cup(2010) where I managed all communications on the broadcast rights for Nigeria.
Aside from my professional accomplishments, I’m passionate about helping people find, accept, and utilize their gifts. I spend a lot of time passing on knowledge, and recently I authored a book called “This Thing Called Purpose”, a book that helps people understand the true essence of living with and through purpose.
2. How do you help individuals utilize their gifts and reach their full potential?
My focus is to help people find clarity, and position their lights in such a way that it impacts other people’s lives thereby setting off a ripple effect of impact and positivity. For me, the ultimate thing is to help others succeed, and this is what my business is built around.
I believe that great things must be accomplished in the heart and mind, before being brought to life. Most people motivate you to fly and be successful, but they don’t tell you that to achieve a certain level of greatness, you have to first strip the layers you’re carrying.
My teaching method is designed to help people unlearn some of the things they have allowed into their heart and mind, strip them fully of the junk, and then help them achieve their goals more confidently.
I also train on gift discovery, brand positioning, and project execution. I believe that finding your gifts is only one aspect of purpose alignment. It is important to be able to create value with those gifts for those who need them and to execute efficiently.
3. What values and principles have led to your success?
I understand that being a leader is a responsibility, not a reward. This simple understanding has allowed me to focus on problem-solving. I am continuously dealing with solving people’s problems, and that sometimes means fully immersing myself in understanding the problem, before I try to solve.
I have learned to focus on the objectives, and not worry about the Fluff – there is so much fluff in the world. The most important thing to me is generating results, everything else is secondary. I understood early in life that it is not enough to have gifts if you cannot upskill these gifts to use them to the best of your ability.
I understand the value of hard work, consistency, and discipline, and so I wake up every morning and put in the work. My parents raised my siblings and me with the mindset to take the initiative and produce results.
My siblings and I spent more time sharing results, rather than talking about what we would do. I take each day at a time, and give as much as I possibly can, per time, with the understanding that to whom much is given, much is expected. I’ve never had an entitlement mentality, and I often thank my parents for all the effort they put into raising us.
I am also thankful to everyone who has given me a platform or opened a door for me.
If I had to summarize my trade secret, it would be my faith, work ethic, and integrity. I live a very intentional and purpose-driven life.
I wrote “This Thing Called Purpose” to help people understand the true essence of living with and through purpose. Everything I addressed in the book is things that I wish were addressed by books I have read in my lifetime.
I want people to realize that Purpose is not a joy ride, it comes with great responsibility and some moments won’t be the best for them. But because of them, it will be the best for someone else. My purpose has pushed me to exist in situations and places that I ordinarily wouldn’t, and I need people to understand this.
4. What words of advice would you like to share with anyone who’s lacking the motivation to make use of their gift/Talent?
Passion is great, but the purpose is better. There’s a misconception that Purpose is solely based on our “Why”. But the purpose isn’t just about “Why are we doing this” It is also about “Who will benefit”. When you understand that this journey is really about being a solution, you’ll express yourself more confidently.
Be open to collaboration – if you don’t care about who gets the credit, you are more likely to do many amazing things. Don’t say yes to everything.
You have to show up fully or not at all, your integrity is a hard currency.
Finally, be Patient – Time is a great storyteller. This is my mantra. I believe that we can beat many variables in life, but cannot beat time – the understanding and acceptance of this fact, brings focus, peace of mind, and ultimately joy.
I know you want to “blow up” overnight, but I suggest that you keep working hard and let all things work together for your good. Your future self will thank you for putting in the work now.
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