Life is not a straight line. Life is more of a curve. I would say that my journey through life hasn’t been smooth, for two basic reasons. Firstly, as I said, nobody has a smooth journey. Secondly, there is always that piece of being a woman, whether it is written boldly or just there within the lines very blurred.
Managing Director, Enterprise Life Nigeria, Funmi Omo has identified commitment to excellence, hard-work, and dedication to service as what paved her way to the top to be one of the best in the insurance industry, adding that her story to becoming the Chief Executive Officer of the company did not come on a platter of gold, but what she achieved with a strong commitment to excellence, hardwork, and dedication to service.
Funmi who is an astute insurance professional with more than 30 years of experience in the industry has spent most of her formative career in African Alliance Insurance until her appointment as the Managing Director in 2017.
In her words, she explained that Nobody has a smooth journey in life, adding that even men don’t have their journeys smooth.
“Life is not a straight line. Life is more of a curve. I would say that my journey through life hasn’t been smooth, for two basic reasons. Firstly, as I said, nobody has a smooth journey. Secondly, there is always that piece of being a woman, whether it is written boldly or just there within the lines very blurred”
“The truth is that there have been challenges. In some cases, I have had to work twice as hard as my male counterparts just to prove myself. I have also had to balance all this with my home and some social commitments and expectations of the society”, Funmi said.
Prior to her role as the MD/CEO of Enterprise Life, Funmi has also taken various leadership roles in various capacities, not just work.
As MD, she championed the digital transformation of the African Alliance, ushering the company into the digital era, unlocking opportunities for its growth.
Before that, she developed and successfully launched microinsurance as a strategic business unit and pioneered the design of the annuity products of the company boosting the annuity product range of African Alliance Plc to become one of the top 3 market players in the industry.
She also pioneered the design, modeling, and marketing of Takaful as the pioneer Family Takaful Office in Nigeria.
Funmi, an alumna of the China European Business School and the Lagos Business School is a chartered insurer, a member of the Institute of Directors (IOD), Associate Member, Chartered Insurance Institute, London, Associate Member, Certified Pensions Institute (Nigeria), and an Associate Member, Nigerian Institute of Management.
She currently serves on the Board of Freedom Foundation. Until 2016, she served on the Board of Trustees, Ajaokuta Steel Complex, Axiom Air and National Iron Ore Mining Company (NIOMCO), as well as on the Boards of Frenchies Food and PAL Pensions Alliance.
Funmi has received numerous awards for her contribution to the insurance sector. In 2019, she was recognised as one of the top 100 women CEOs in Africa by Reset Global People, a UN, and Ghanaian Presidency initiative.
On how she balances her time with work, life and family, Funmi said that there are times she gives more attention to work.
“At such times, it’s the home that feels the brunt but it requires having a supportive family. If the family is not supportive, there would be an imbalance. That is the truth. There are times when the demands of the work are not as much as the demands of the home. At such times, you prioritise home and still pay attention to work. The amount of time devoted to work is then toned down. You have to give that attention”, she explained.
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“In the course of having to nurture them and build a career, I have had to find balance by paying less attention to certain things. So, when I need to give attention to the children, my social life becomes zero. It is the children, work and zero social life. When the children are in school or they have a holiday, then, I gave more time to work”,
Funmi also added that she has time for socials and then spends some time with the family. “In the midst of all these, I make sure to create an oasis of sanity for myself; this is what you would call ‘me time”, she pointed.
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