The competition is tough, the competition is harsh, and the competition is fast, yet everybody wants to be a player but not everybody likes the rules. It is really ironic, because whatever is worth doing is worth doing well. Motivational speakers are often quoted as saying “To make it in life, you must understand the game”. From these compelling words, this question emerges: “What is the game, and how do I play it?”
Success tales in the huge terrain of business often read like grand epics, packed with dramatic ups and downs, unusual beginnings, and astonishing turns of fate. But, at the heart of every successful business lies a common thread weaved from the complexities of partnership. The stories of enterprises that have thrived because of the strength of collaboration are as diverse as the individuals who shape them, and they illustrate one thing: Partnership is a winning formula for businesses.
Gone are the days when businesses operated in isolation. Today, collaboration is redefining the corporate landscape. Enterprises are discovering the benefits of joining forces with other organisations to create synergies that fuel growth and innovation. In our evolving landscape, the path to prosperity is increasingly paved with partnerships.
Partnerships come in many forms, each tailored to the specific needs and goals of the participating companies. The spectrum of partnerships includes joint ventures, strategic alliances, mergers and acquisitions, and collaborations with non-profits and startups. These alliances transcend traditional industry boundaries and are designed to leverage the unique strengths and resources of each partner.
Take, for instance, the collaboration between Ford and Google. Ford, a legacy automaker, and Google, a tech giant, may seem like an odd couple, but their partnership has allowed them to harness their respective expertise. By incorporating Google’s cloud technology, AI capabilities, and data analytics, Ford has not only revolutionised its in-car experience but has also made significant strides towards developing autonomous vehicles.
One of the most compelling aspects of partnerships is the diversity they often bring. When partners hail from different backgrounds and have varied life experiences, it can lead to innovative solutions. A prime example is the partnership between Howard Schultz and Alfred Peet. Schultz, the founder of Starbucks, partnered with Peet, an Amsterdam native, who was considered the “father of gourmet coffee” in the United States. Their backgrounds brought together two distinct coffee cultures, ultimately giving birth to a global coffee giant that redefined coffee consumption in America and beyond.
Another inspiring partnership story is that of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Apple Inc. emerged as a technology giant thanks to Jobs’ vision and marketing skills combined with Wozniak’s technical brilliance. The partnership between these two individuals brought to life a success story of innovation and design that reshaped the tech industry.
Despite the potential for great success, partnerships come with their fair share of challenges. Different backgrounds and stories can lead to clashing perspectives, which if not managed properly, can spell disaster. Consider the turbulent partnership of Bill Gates and Paul Allen, co-founders of Microsoft. The clash of their opinions and personalities ultimately led to a bitter separation. However, their individual perspectives also drove them to success in their own right.
On a smaller scale, countless startups have faced challenges when co-founders have differing visions and backgrounds. Balancing the power of these different perspectives requires strong communication and compromise. The partnership landscape is teeming with potential, and a commitment to embracing diverse stories can lead to enriched outcomes.
Nigeria, our proud motherland, our lover and our enemy, is the backdrop of one of our inspiring stories today. As we are all well aware, Nigeria is a country where embarking on a business venture, especially a partnership, is akin to sailing through uncharted waters. The challenges are as diverse as the people—ranging from economic instabilities to bureaucratic hurdles and cultural nuances.
Yet, with determination and a shared faith in their abilities, Wisdom Ezekiel and Dr. Sunday Olurunseyi, armed with the weapon of resilience, and the unyielding force of righteousness stood firm. Their journey started humbly, as local land sellers. From those modest beginnings, they embarked on a transformative journey, setting their sights on something much bigger—the global stage.
They are two men who have sculpted their narrative from the raw material of dedication, friendship, and unwavering faith. They are a dynamic duo at the helm of Pertinence Group who have not only carved out a successful enterprise development company that invests in creating wealth, value and opportunities across sectors especially in real estate, but have authored a book, “The Pertinence Way”, to share their extraordinary journey.
Their story began with a vision, a shared dream that sprouted amidst a backdrop of local land selling. The duo embarked on their entrepreneurial voyage, fueled by the desire to change the narrative. They envisioned a path where success is not an anomaly but a choice anyone can make, a journey they could share with others through their experiences and guidance.
As devout Christians, their faith became the foundation of their endeavour, shaping the core values of their company. The partnership between them goes beyond the conventional business sense. It is rooted in their shared belief in doing business with integrity, transparency, and a strong sense of moral responsibility. Their Christian faith forms the bedrock of their partnership, guiding their decisions and actions towards creating a business that serves a higher purpose. For them, entrepreneurship is not just a business venture, but a means to extend their purpose-driven approach to life and to impact the community around them positively. Now that’s not just a single story, it is a perfect blend of multiple stories, principles and lifestyle.
We live in a world where business practices are often viewed through a utilitarian lens, the fusion of righteousness with entrepreneurship is a breath of fresh air. It exemplifies the possibility of harmonising profit-making with principles of honesty, fairness, and social responsibility.
As Dr. Sunday Olorunseyi eloquently said in an interview with Chim’s Talk Africa, “I am glad to say that I am one of the few people that are Apostles in the marketplace today, and being in the marketplace has not limited me from impacting lives.” He stands on the belief that his faith is not separate from their business, it is at its very core and that the force of righteousness can transform the economy, and he has stories and testimonials to support it.
The ripple effects of such an approach are profound. By placing importance on moral values and ethical conduct, they have not only built a thriving enterprise but have also cultivated a community of like-minded individuals within their business ecosystem. Their journey underscores that a morally grounded partnership not only attracts customers but also cultivates a loyal and engaged workforce.
“We looked at Africa and we realised that we don’t have too many success stories about business partnerships, even if they existed nobody tells these stories,” remarked Dr. Olorunsheyi in the same interview with Chim’s Talk Africa. They wanted to change the narrative and show that a partnership built on trust, faith, and hard work can defy the odds.
“The Pertinence Way” is not merely a memoir of achievements, but a guidebook, a beacon of hope for aspiring entrepreneurs. It narrates the struggles, triumphs, and invaluable lessons garnered over the years. It’s an invitation to follow a path that’s rooted in values, principles, and unwavering faith—a path that leads to success, not just for oneself but for the community at large.
Sharing their journey was no easy feat. We live in a society that often values privacy over disclosure, getting people to open up about their trials and tribulations can be an uphill battle. Many are hesitant to reveal the struggles they endured on the path to success, fearing judgement or undermining their achievements.
As you turn the pages of The Pertinence Way, you are not just reading a book; you are witnessing the testament of two individuals who refused to be content with selling a single story.They beckon us to embrace the myriad stories of challenges and triumphs that are waiting to be told, not just in Africa but across the globe. Their story is a reminder that success is not limited to a few; it’s a journey that anyone with dedication, resilience, and faith can embark upon.
The lesson here is that partnerships, when founded on mutual respect and trust, can transcend individual stories and backgrounds, creating a unified narrative that drives the business forward. By embracing diversity, businesses can tap into a wider array of ideas and experiences, ultimately leading to growth and innovation.
All these stories illustrate the power of collaboration, where diverse backgrounds and stories enrich business ventures and they emphasise the fact that Partnership is indeed a winning formula in business. While challenges may arise, partnerships offer opportunities for individuals to merge their unique narratives into a single, compelling success story. It is in these differences that we find the heart and soul of many thriving businesses, proving that unity in diversity is the key to prosperity.
…written by Esther Anyasi, an intern with the media team of Pertinence Group.