How to conduct a Nigerian meeting!


A Nigerian is not just a person who has a green passport or one whose parents are Nigerian citizens. A Nigerian properly-so-called, is one who knows how to live in Nigeria without bursting an artery, committing suicide, or running away to seek asylum somewhere else. If you have run away, kindly refrain from calling yourself a Nigerian. The acceptable term for you is ‘of Nigerian origin’. There is a difference. 

Being a proper Nigerian, I feel like I should explain this concept thoroughly starting with how to conduct meetings. A Nigerian meeting is not just an event. It is that sacred, multipurpose, indispensable tool for living the Nigerian life. This is how to conduct a Nigerian meeting.

As a business owner, always call for meetings even for things you can do by email. Sometimes, meet early in the morning for morning devotion to commit your business and hustle to the hands of God. Meet to set the agenda for other meetings that will be held over the week. 

Jobs are boring. You need a distraction. Meetings, especially ones with tea break, prevent you from losing your mind and picking up a gun to shoot all your annoying colleagues like white people do. White people need to have more meetings. 

When going for a meeting, never arrive early. This will give the impression that you are jobless, desperate or too eager. Nobody likes Nigerians who are jobless or too eager. A true Nigerian, not one who is pretending to be white, will understand if you show up late for a meeting. They may feign annoyance, but usually they will wait. In fact the best of Nigerians will make excuses for you, especially if you live in a place like Lagos. You will walk in late to a meeting, panting, with that faux look of contrition and the person you are having a meeting with – if she is a good Nigerian – will say: Eiyah! Traffic abi? You will only have to nod or say something like: No be small tin o. Everyone will be grateful that you showed up and the meeting will begin. 

When you are having a big meeting with an ‘oga’ (or oga-madam) it is safer to cancel all other appointments for the day. Because the oga will saunter in three hours late and you will have to smile and say “No, not at all!” when he asks: “Did I keep you waiting?” 

If you are an oga, you should never, ever show up for a meeting on time. This is Nigeria. People disrespect ogas who don’t keep them waiting forever. They will think you are equals and before you know it one ordinary person will call your name without adding Chief or Prof or Honorable or Your Excellency. God forbid that after hustling to get those titles, some idiot forgets to mention them. All because you came early to a meeting. 

As a proper Nigerian whose father is God, you must commit all meetings to His hands. You may work hard but it is God that is in charge of blessing our hustle. Never forget to say at least two prayers in every meeting. One Christian, one Muslim. You never know which of the Gods will answer favorably. It does not matter if you will be discussing how to steal from other people. God sees the heart and he knows that deep down, all you want to do is succeed. 

When it is your turn to speak at a meeting it is rude to go straight to the point. Proper Nigerians are not rude. Because I care, please find below a summary of how to speak at a Nigerian meeting:

1.     Don’t be ungrateful. Thank the moderator for giving you the opportunity to speak. 

2.   Don’t be disrespectful. Observe all protocol. People did not become highly placed by mistake. 

3.    Show appreciation. Say how much it is a privilege for you to be at the meeting. Use the phrases ‘singular honor’ and ‘rare privilege’.

4.  Show understanding. Explain how important the meeting is to you and to everyone present. Thank the conveners for having the wisdom to organize the meeting.

5.    Show regard for the last speaker. Use words like ‘just like the last speaker has said’ or ‘I want to concur with the last speaker’ or ‘I totally agree with the last speaker’ or ‘I want to align myself with the last speaker’. Then proceed to say the same thing using your own words. It is important for everyone to have a chance to speak at a meeting. 

6.     Be considerate. Promise not to speak too long with a phrase like: ‘I will not take much of your time’, after which you can speak freely.

7.    Always provide a summary of all you have just said. Use phrases like: ‘So, what have I just said?’ or ‘What am I trying to say?’ to introduce you summary. 

8.    Be observant.  If you still have more things to say and you sense that people are tired of hearing you speak, use the words ‘In conclusion’ to give them hope that you will soon end, after which you can continue to speak freely. 

All meetings must end in a closing prayer. To avoid a fight however, take care to remember whether it was a Christian prayer or Muslim prayer you began with. When you are not sure, do both prayers. You do not want to annoy any children of the Nigerian God. 

One last thing: Don’t forget that the only acceptable way of answering a phone call during a Nigerian meeting is to shout: “Hello, please I am in a meeting, let me call you back.” People will smile, seeing how important this meeting is to you.  

I hope that this helps and that God will continue to bless your hustle as you conduct meetings.

– Elnathan John. 

What do you wish a man like President Robert Mugabe on his birthday?

I have just realised that i may have missed the birthday of an enigma of a man Robert Mugabe the President of Zimbabwe.
One of Africa’s longest serving head of state.
How old is the man even? 90? 91? Less or more?
This man is indeed blessed.
What is the life expectancy in Zimbabwe and indeed Africa.
How many are lucky enough to live to this ripe old age both in Africa and the world at large?
Your type come once in a life time and I admire your accomplishments politically and otherwise.
You have taken the west head on in many battles and have come out successful.
Not many are so lucky.
Aren’t Zimbabweans lucky to have you?
Your political opponents must stop being greedy and learn to wait for their turn.
Politicians and indeed scholars should apply to your school of political strategy to learn about how to stay in power.
What is the secret of your success if I may ask?
I have never been fortunate to see you life but always marvel when I see you on television and wonder how you navigate land mine after landmine in your career.
Carry go Presido.
What do i wish a man like Uncle Bob Mugabe on his birthday?
Long life?
Prosperity or both?
He has both in super abundance.
Maybe power?
Yes I forgot good health, but you have also enjoyed a measure of good health having lived this long and still going strong.
Am at the cross roads Uncle Bob since I don’t know what else to wish an octogenarian warrior an acclaimed freedom fighter, a master political strategist on your birthday but just to make it simple and just say happy birthday!

Posted by Damian

Are you predictable?

I have over the years come to the realisation that it doesn’t pay to be predictable!

Do you want to know why?

The moment you become predictable no one is interested anymore!  Period.

This applies in all facets if life. People are tripped by mysticism, invisibility, make believe and all the like.

Doesn’t make sense to me but that’s the world we kive in today.

So keep weaving that myth around yourself to keep people guessing and thinking, try and always be one step ahead of the next person or your competition.

I like to think that this is what organisations do with their strategies in gaining and sustaining competitive advantage. Imagine what became if the organisations or companies that lost their competitive advantage – they died ir will die eventually.

They became predictable.

So wherever you are and whatever you do keep spinning the web to keep people interested in you, your product or service.

Okay there you go, I think I am becoming predictable now, so I must……..

Until the next post, keep spinning!

Posted from

First Impressions Matter.

“You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.

When someone contacts your company for the first time

– whether via telephone, Internet, or in person

– remember just how important that first impression can be.

Making that stranger feel wanted and appreciated can turn him or her into a lifetime advocate for your service or product offerings, whether he buys or not.”

–       Richard Shapiro

Labour – Employer Relations South Africa!

Takin’ care of business: South Africa is ranked the lowest out of 144 countries in terms of cooperation in labour-employer relations, indicating significant tensions in labour-employer relations. (World Economic Forum Global Competitive Index 2012/13,

I do agree with this post absolutely because of the frequency of strikes and shutdowns in the country. All you hear most times are strikes in most sectors of the economy. Is it that there is no trust between employer and labour or that employer is constantly “exploiting” the workforce consequently leading to the continuous agitation by labour unions representing the workers? How are contracts of employment entered into in the beginning? Are employees too desperate for work in the beginning to take a good look at their contracts before signing and realise later that they have been or being “exploited”? Is it that the representatives of the labour unions use their position to settle personal scores with their employer when they get into this positions?

How do we resolve this challenge? My suggestion is for employers to adopt a bottom-up communications strategy with employees, show more concern with employee welfare. In setting wage structures consider inflationary trends and constantly review same to avoid conflicts and explain the rationale behind those wage structures. This should ultimately improve employer – labour relationships in most sectors and push South Africa higher up the ladder.  

What are your thoughts as employers, employees or labour unions?