Do The Extra To Be Extraordinary

In the year 2000….

I was undergoing the mandatory national youth service (NYSC), interning at the MTEL, Nigeria’s first mobile telecommunications provider before the advent of GSM.

I was not just an ordinary corper, I was a “super corper”, by virtue of my responsibilities, I had the privilege of working on a special project piloted at the CEO’s office, which was the introduction of bundled service (line and mobile phone) to check the activities of touts who were reaping off the subscribers.

Then, the official cost of a mobile line and phone was about N69,000 but you could spend up to half a million to 1 million Naira to acquire one. So, my job was to program and activate the lines and mobile phones, make them ready and available to customers, at the official rate.

I took on the challenge with joy and passion. Even as an intern, I worked as if I was a full staff, closing late at nights, sometimes working on weekends just to meet deadlines. In a short time, I had learnt so much and grown very fast, my work was so crucial that almost everyone in the organization knew me by name, a mobile phone was assigned to me, a “bloody corper” lol.

For me there was no off-day, my CD (community development) days were so short, a pool car was always on standby waiting to take me back to office, just to ensure that I was at my desk to deliver value to the clients (mostly VIPs) and by extension the company.

By the time I finished my NYSC in 2001, GSM licenses were already issued, I had offers from the new telecommunications companies but I chose to stay with the company that gave me the opportunity to learn and grow, such was my loyalty and dedication to the organization. And like they say, the rest is history.

In life, I have learned that outputs answer to inputs. If you want quality outputs, your contributions must be of top notch quality. Garbage in, garbage out. Quality in, quality out. You reap what you sow.

If you put in regular work, you will get average results. If you put in more work than everyone else, you will get the results that no one else is getting; you cannot cut your way through it. It is a principle of life that you either align with and get results or abuse and suffer the consequences.

This principle of work excellence is what I encourage at iCentra and other organizations that I’m privileged to be a part of.

“You don’t do the ordinary and expect extraordinary results. Likewise, you should not expect phenomenal results if you only do what is normal.” So, start doing the extra today.

Tag anyone that needs to read this.

Be Terrific!


📸 Top: Circa 2000 -Intern at MTEL , Bottom: Circa 2020 – CEO at iCentra.

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