By Ighotome Mukoro

We all have been created for so much more than who we are now. We a lot of times live our lives less of who we truly are. In the inside of every man lies the seed of greatness, the seed of leadership and potentials.

Emerge is a book that calls out to that seed of greatness, that leader and that potential in us. In the book, Ighotome seeks to bring us into the knowledge and understanding that in the inside of us lies a leader waiting to be discovered. Our lack of leadership and inadequate leaders is not a problem of lack in itself but a lack of understanding of the leader that resides in each an every one of us, and a lack of that understanding keeps us from calling that leader into light.

He began with an inspiring story of a man who chose to take up responsibility to serve and inspire a set of people, an ordinary man like each one of us, but who woke up to the reality of the leader in him. He went ahead to explain to us the reason why we all are leaders which is so amazing to know that we all can rise to become leaders.

A Leader he says is one who finds the path and the discovery of the path causes him to walk in it, thereby inspiring and influencing others to walk their own path. The moment we wake up to the reality of the leader in us, we are able to inspire others to wake up to the leaders in them. So influencing others into waking up to the leadership in them is a journey we all must make at one point in time in our lives.

Ighotome did a good job in giving us points and processes involved in our emerging as the leaders we were meant to be.

It is a journey of discovery, paying the price, enduring the perils and choosing not to be any less than what we were created to be. It is also important to note how he links our journey into discovering who we are to discovering our creator, the very one who made us. It is popularly said that if you want to know the purpose of a thing, the best place to find it is with the manufacturer. So in your journey to become the leader you are, discovery of your maker is important.

He closes with two important point; the marks of a leader and passing the baton. There are attributes that help us identify as leaders and if we are lacking them, then it shows we still haven’t come into the realization of the leader within.

When we have finally become that leader, it is important to pass the baton, we lack leaders not because we haven’t had them, but because they didn’t pass on the baton.

In conclusion, it’s time to Emerge, it’s a call to everyone to wake up and see that there’s a leader in the inside of you. Don’t silence him, wake him up.


By John Asiegbu.

Every human being experiences feelings, expresses emotions and gets into moods. The problem is, not many people know how to control their feelings, emotions and moods. These three are the basic things that make up our Emotional Intelligence (EI).

In this book, John Asiegbu begins by adequately explaining to us the difference between these elements of our emotional intelligence. This is because; we can only control what we understand. The first step towards improving your emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and study your emotions and then consciously decide how you want to respond to each feeling as it comes up.

He goes further to explain that it is okay to express thought,  feelings and beliefs, because not doing so is simply hiding ourselves from who we are and not letting others perceive us rightly. Because not every thought or feeling may be acceptable at different situations, he urges that we express ourselves with a level of assertiveness which allows us say the truth about how we feel without being either aggressive or passively accepting wrong. Expressing your emotions is healthy for your state of mind and EI.

The ability to control your emotions is a powerful tool towards improving your emotional intelligence. But beyond controlling your own emotions, is the ability to manage other’s emotions which if done well will hinder a lot of problems we face in our communication with people. One way John shows us how to manage others emotions is the ability to put ourselves in their shoes, then take control of what they are feeling, then try to guide them into our own calm state of mind. This is especially important in the place of work and how superiors communicate with their sub-ordinate and also how sub-ordinate communicate with one another.

Keeping a positive mind and making a conscious decision to be happy irrespective of the situations you find yourself, is a good way to control your emotions and be able to manage other’s emotions.

Lastly, John picked up a component that has a great effect on our emotional intelligence that we seldom pay attention to. Sleep. He explains using studies previously made on how a good consistent amount of sleep helps improve our emotional intelligence. He says sleep is important to your emotional well being.

In conclusion, John calls us into a place of actively paying attention to our feelings and emotions by applying the various steps laid in the book one at a time. This he suggests will go a long way in improving our Emotional Intelligence.


Entrepreneurs spend so much time creating and designing products and services with the hope that the product or service will make their business a lot of money. However, most products end up draining the company’s pocket instead of filling it up with money. This sad reality make a lot of entrepreneurs wonder why customers don’t seem to want their product.

The answer is quite simple yet brutal. Make what customers want not what you want. It’s easy to fall into the trap of making what you think customers want but” assumption is the lowest form of knowledge, its twin is guessing” Olakunle Soriyan once said. You have to focus on finding out what customers truly want and creating a product that fulfils their desire. It’s guaranteed that when you make a product that customers truly want, you will get their attention and patronage.

What’s the best way to discover what customers want? It’s simply by observation, study and test launching. You have to commit to observing your target market, study them and understand their deepest desires. It’s always hard to create equilibrium between customer desires and what they are willing to pay. This is where test launching and creativity is important. Test-launch what you think they want based on your study within a small size of your target market and learn from their feedback. Use the feedback to refine your final product.  It’s important to only make what customers want.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales and brand growth strategist and product development expert. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales, brand growth and product development strategy firm. 

Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma

There’s no better time for brands to begin to think global than 2021. A local store in Dallas will never utilize its true potential until it’s leaders realize there is an untapped market for them in Tokyo or Lagos. Global is the true idea of life. Solving problems and meeting needs across continents.

An African store in Chicago maybe fulfilled with the volume of orders they get but when they take an helicopter view, they will soon realize that Africans in London, Germany and Russia need their services too. This is the story of HP, LG, Toyota, Honda, Apple, Samsung and many other audacious global brands.

As competition grows due to local success, smart brands draw strength from international sales. The first step is to expand across the country, and then aspire to go international. Global brands must document every part of their business process to the tiniest detail. Success is not an accident and if there’s a market for your product or service in another state or country, you owe it to the people there to improve their lives with your product or service.

Going global is an important essence of life; solving problems everywhere, for everyone regardless of their race, gender, religion, location or nationality. This is what Christianity and Islam have done brilliantly. Dare to go global.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales and brand growth strategist and product development expert. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales, brand growth and product development strategy firm. 

Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma

Asking for a sale is one of the frightening moments for a new sales person or entrepreneur. Almost everyone hates rejection and getting a NO can be very discouraging.

The good news is getting a NO can be a blessing if used properly. “NO” helps you understand that your potential customer isn’t convinced your offering is best for them. Once you get a NO, thank the potential customer for their honesty. You have to thank them sincerely because a NO is a gift, a disguised gift.

The next step is education. In this case, you become the student and your potential customer becomes your teacher. Tell the potential customer that your focus has shifted from winning them over to learning from them. Use words like, “Dear Customer (insert name), I understand you do not want to buy XYZ at the moment. I am deeply grateful for your honesty. I would like to draw from your wisdom and experience to understand how best we can design, restructure or improve XYZ that will ensure we attract the right customers. I would appreciate your insight. It will help us become a better company”.

Customers have a lot to say. You will be stunned that how much information they would give for free when given the opportunity. Usually, the potential customer will let you know why they are not buying and if you need to improve anything. It’s at this point you shoot again. “Would you be willing to take delivery of XYZ if we improve ABC based on your recommendations?”.

It works like magic on potential customers who have the means to make an instant purchase. You would mostly get a YES because they feel like a part of your company now and their voice has been heard.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales growth and product development strategist. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales growth and product development strategy firm. 

Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma

Sales unit is one of the few business units where success can be easily measured; it’s always about the numbers. Some super stars bring in great numbers for a few months and then, the numbers begin to decline. I’ve put together a few sales secrets that can help sales leaders achieve consistent sales growth.


Understand your product

It’s important to understand the problems your product solves or the needs your product meets for your customers. Underrating or overrating your product can be costly. Know the true worth of your product offering and the true value customers will get from owning your product. For example, air conditioning does more that cool the atmosphere, it gives users prestige, beautifies their home or office and it helps them sleep and live better. It even helps them think better. It’s more than an electronic that cools the environment.


Know your customers

Never underestimate or overestimate the needs of your customers. Customers are different, while there are unifying needs, it’s important to know that each customer is unique. When you know the people who need your product and how they want to be served, your job is 50% done. In Africa, a gas station serves cars but beyond cars, they serve generators, millions of generators. Although they make room for generators, they are designed to serve only cars even though generators are a big chunk of their business.


Solve, don’t Sell 

Alot of customers don’t like being sold to. They want sales people to be problem solvers. I’m tasty, give me water. Even if you successfully sell ice to someone who is freezing to death, you won’t get a repeat order. If you know your customers (which is the major sales work), solve their problems with your products. Focus on people who need your product and can afford them. Educate them and let them realise your product is the answer to their prayer.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales growth and product development strategist. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales growth and product development strategy firm. 

Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma

Your difference is your strength. Often times, people struggle to push a brand or product because it’s a copy of a fast selling brand or product. We sometimes forget that customers are intelligent and can tell the difference between an original and a cheap copy. A copy will struggle to sell at the premium price originals charge.

A fast selling original is now the past. In order to sell and sell well, you must invent an improved version of existing products and it must be easy to spot the difference. The difference between the iPhone and other brands is easy to spot. If you use an iPhone and another phone brand, you will struggle during transitions. The difference especially from Apple is intentional. They need to be different. If they become like the others, why would customers choose them. They continue to innovate even as others copy them shamelessly. Your difference is your strength. Everyone is selling real estate but why is yours different? Everyone is making clothes but why is yours different? Everyone is doing music but why is yours different?

People fall into the meaningless difference trap. As people attempt to be different, they end up creating a difference that is meaningless to the end user. For example, your real estate is different because your houses are painted with a unique colour. This difference is meaningless to the end user. Colour is not a major game changer. A major game changer that’s more likely to be a hit in West Africa is “pay 20% and move in while you spread 80% over 10 year”. This is new, useful and very different. People will copy you once you succeed but you must continue to innovate and out-work them.

It’s hard to win a Grammy with a copy. In Nigeria, Burna Boy needed to sing something that people could dance to, sing and yet be unique. He also had to create a team others didn’t create or have. Winning a Grammy was simply a matter of time for Burna. The work is creating something different yet useful and relevant. Your useful, relevant and commercial difference is your strength. Create it and the world will reward you with loyal customers and orders. Your difference is your strength.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales and brand growth strategist and product development expert. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales, brand growth and product development strategy firm.

Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma


Music is borderless. Movies are borderless. Coaching is borderless.  Apps are borderless. Business focused on rendering virtual services found favour immediately the internet was invented.

October 29 1969 (the day the internet was created) is the day virtual services got lucky but 2021 is the year the harvest became so ripe; too ripe to ignore. The virtual industry is a multibillion dollar industry. No one knows how big it is. From e sports to music, it’s a very big market.

A musician in New York can sell his music to music lovers in Cape Town. A software developer in Dallas can get users in London without ever stepping foot in Europe. A movie maker in Chicago can get views from West Africa. The possibilities are limitless and we are yet to fully understand how big and powerful the opportunities are.

The big question remains, how do you sell to new markets? How do you convince these people to buy? The sales process begins with product development. The two most powerful words in product development are original and useful/valuable.

The pain of selling a bad product shouldn’t be felt by anyone.  Entrepreneurs and creators need to spend time creating original and valuable content. In creating valuable content, creators must understand that value is relative. What’s value to you might not be value to potential users or customers.

To understand what customers consider to be value, study them and study what they are already buying or requesting for. Once you find this, create an original content around this. A simple and attractive online advert targeted at the right audience with an original and valuable service will be an instant hit.

For example, during the peak of COVID19 crisis, people needed to continue to communicate in large groups as events has come to stay but it moved from onsite to online. Zoom, Google Meet and many platforms tweaked their products to meet this need with original and valuable ideas. People also needed to continue to shop at reasonable prices in a safe way, Amazon, Uber eats and many other brands met this need with original ideas.

In Africa, Jumia continued to reach so many people during COVID19. Numerous offline brands moved online to meet this need.  Virtual services from the US like Neflix saw a major increase in African subscriptions.

The future is virtual. Virtual is borderless. In the virtual world, the earth is a one big global village.

Written by Smart Emmanuel. Emmanuel is Africa’s leading sales and brand growth strategist and product development expert. He is CEO of The Stralution Company Limited, a sales, brand growth and product development strategy firm. 


Twitter and Instagram: @iamsmartemma