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Never be afraid to start small ― Omonua

Never be afraid to start small ― Omonua

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Judith Ikhenosen Omonua, 22, is the CEO of Ghunu Effects. She speaks to FAVOUR MIKE-EWEWIE on the advantages and disadvantages of owning a business

Tell us about Ghunu Effects and how you came up with the name?

Ghunu Effects is a beauty enterprise. We are into skincare and makeup and we also intend to expand in the coming years. The name, Ghunu Effects, came up when I was trying to start my career as a beautician. I wanted something different, catchy, strong and outstanding; something that best describes my personality. ‘Ghunu’ is an Esan word which means keep quiet.

How did you get the idea of the business and what was the mission at the outset?

I will say divine inspiration. I never dreamt or imagined that I will get to this level. I actually grew with the business and I learnt a lot through research and self- experimentation.

What is your educational background?

I have a Bachelor in Political Science from Covenant University.

 To what do you attribute your success?

I attribute my success to God because only Him has taken me this far. Dedication, diligence and focus have also helped; it hasn’t been an easy ride but it is worth it. Most of all, my family support because without them, I think I would have crashed a long time ago.

What is unique about your business?

Everything about us is unique. We do not impose our products on people. There have been times when I specially formulate products for particular customers like our ‘Luxri-glow kit’ and ‘Face serum’ to mention a few which are now readily available on demand. We are a unique brand that promotes, produces and sells strictly organic products.

What are your responsibilities as the business owner and how do you advertise your business?

I do a lot; from formulating, marketing, packaging, consultations, you name it; I do it all. I delegate, but I prefer hands-on supervision. I advertise by engaging in social media marketing.

 How would you describe the experience so far?

With all honesty, the journey has been stressful but rewarding.

Have you ever turned down a client and why?

Yes, and I still do. I turn down clients or customers that request ‘bleaching’ or whitening products, quick-action results; customers that constantly change skincare products and I am also very mindful of people that run down other brands for any reason whatsoever.

What are your future expectations for your business?

My vision for my business is to be the world’s leading organic skincare and beauty brand.

Did you work anywhere before setting up your business?

No, I never did.

What are the risks you face and how do you surmount them?

Starting up was a challenge as I never planned on venturing into skincare. Getting one customer to trust my products was really challenging. It has always been a ‘learn as you go’ experience for me.

What is your staff strength?

I currently have 11 staff working for me, excluding delivery service companies.

Have you ever thought of quitting and seeking paid employment?

Never!

What do you love the most about being an entrepreneur?

I love the fact that I am able to control my time.

What are the important lessons you have learnt in the course of managing a business?

Only you can limit your level of achievement. Only you can market you.

What is the toughest decision you have had to make concerning your business?

Making decisions generally isn’t always the easiest thing to do because there are a lot of things to put into consideration.

When you have to toil your way through a ton of work, how do you get through it?

The just-concluded trade fair, where I exhibited, was pretty challenging. I was in Lagos preparing for a job on a movie set as a make-up artist while also overseeing the production and packaging of my products for the trade fair and at the same time trying to meet up demands from my online customers. I can say that was a time when I really wished I was omnipresent. But in the end, it all was a huge success and I couldn’t have wanted it any other way.

What do you want to do when you are not at work and what other skills do you encompass?

When I am not at work, which is so rare, I like to relax, pamper myself and hang out with my friends. I am also a makeup artist and special effects makeup is my forte.

Have you ever considered alliance or partnership?

No, I have not.

If you have one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?

Never be scared to start small. Never be in a hurry to get the fame.

Where do you see the future of entrepreneurship in Nigeria?

By the day, a large percentage of our youths own their businesses. So, I see a lot of thriving industries in the future.Copyright PUNCH.

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