Every weekday for the next 3 weeks, I make my way to the top floor of the Heirs Place building. This floor, a glass and tile open plan office space, is where the Tony Elumelu Foundation team carries out their daily activities. A team I am now a part of, courtesy of being part of the Heirs Holdings Graduate Trainees assigned to the Tony Elumelu Foundation for my first job rotation. At the Foundation, I work with the Marketing and Corporate Communications team, but before I go any further into my experience so far, allow me to take you back to how and where it all started.
Around December last year, my brother sent me a link to apply for Heirs Holdings Graduate Trainee Programme. I did a bit of research about Heirs Holdings and I knew this was the place for me. I knew I would have the opportunity to meet top CEOs and even Mr Tony Elumelu in person! Omo! I hurriedly applied then Bam! I got a date for the first assessment test which was cognitive. I’ve failed quite a number of cognitive tests in the past, but because I was determined to get into Heirs Holdings I put in more serious, conscious work this time and boom! I got a mail that I passed. Shortly after, I was invited to the next assessment stage which was quite rigorous.
The second assessment stage was in three phases; first, a competency-based interview, then a case study question was given to us which we were supposed to answer and present on a PowerPoint and a group discussion with other applicants. And after about 4 hours of moving from one meeting room to another, the second assessment stage finally came to an end.
A few weeks went by and I didn’t hear from anyone nor did I get a reply to my follow-ups, It felt, to my dismay, like another opportunity had gone by, and in my head, I was analysing where I must have gone wrong during the assessment stage. To make matters worse, I heard some people were already getting congratulatory emails asking them to go for medicals and the resumption date was fixed. I was heartbroken but I didn’t give up, mostly thanks to my brother who kept encouraging me. I sent several emails but no reply, at some point I was like, “guy forget this one don go”!
So on the 5th of March 2022, I got a call from an unknown person introducing himself as an HR personnel from Heirs Holdings and congratulating me for making it into the Heirs Holdings graduate trainee programme. He asked me if I was available to resume on Wednesday 9th March 2022. You can imagine what my response was, lol!
On Wednesday, the journey started with a formal opening of the graduate trainee programme. Mr Tony Elumelu and other top CEOs were in attendance, followed by a cocktail party to round it off. Posing beside TOE for a picture was my highlight of the event.
The next day we were back in class for two and half weeks of an intensive orientation session, facilitated by top CEOs and staff of Heirs Holdings who gave us insightful information about the Heirs Holdings culture. This orientation session also involved bonding with other graduate trainees at tea break in the morning and at lunchtime held in the Heirs Place garden, which were my favourite moments.
Now about how things are going. I mentioned earlier that I’m with the media and communications department (the content creators). Working within the Marketing and Corporate Communication team has been so tasking yet engaging and fun filled. I’ve learnt new things including how to use canvas, creating engaging content on social media, also learnt about external relations and partnership.
What I like most about the Marketing and Corporate Communications team is the accommodating nature of every member of the team, it’s a big family here at the Tony Elumelu Foundation MCC. The experience so far has been superb.
It’s a whole new experience for me but hey I’m loving it here and if you ask me, I don’t want my 3 weeks here to come to an end just yet.
~ Nurudeen Odetayo