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Abu Tafawa Balewa Editor In Chief Mode Men Magazine Gives An Insight Into The Industry; His Journey So Far(Part 1)

An amazing journey of an outstanding entrepreneur ABU TAFAWA BALEWA editor in chief Mode Men Magazine. We had an interview with him and he shared a couple of his success secrets and also shed light on the journey so far.

Here we go;
Q: Mode Men Magazine is Nigerian’s no 1 male life style magazine, tell me what it’s like to be the editor-in-chief.
A: It’s a great task, obviously brain quality magazine, informative, out every month, it’s a lot of work and it’s very satisfying when you get feedback. We get a lot of emails from readers who we’ve touched their lives, obviously articles, we have written. Some is the style article, some sports article and some the health article, but it’s a fulfilling job.mode
Q: it sounds very exciting and very glamorous. Tell me what your everyday is like.
A: No two days are the same. A lot of partying, photo shoots, interviews, I have gotten to meet a lot of people that I never dreamt of meeting through the line of my work so it’s fun, a lot of hard work but it’s fun.
Q: Tell me about the glamour.
A: We get to go to a lot of VIP parties, locally and internationally, we are always invited to a lot of high profile events, polo matches abroad and Dubai it’s all fun anyway.
Q; Tell me what business means to you, because I know you went to Ahmadu Bello University and you studied law. Am wondering what you are doing here.
A: One of the things I tell a lot of people is that when their children are in school, it’s important to have a counselor. If I had a career’s counselor, I would have most likely read mass communication. But in secondary school you get a jamb brochure and look through (I hated mathematics) anything without maths was English; boys don’t read English (laughs) only girls. The next thing was law and I have no regrets because in every area of business, legal knowledge is very very important. After I graduated from Ahmadu Bello University, I went on to do my law school in Enugu campus, I was called to bar after that. I worked in Liberal law with the former attorney General of Lagos state Mrs.Hariat Balogun. But after about a year, the spark was gone, and i thought is this what I want to do for the rest of my life and I thought no. so I went to my boss and told her madam I don’t think this is what I want to do and I want to take some time off, to think on about it, and she said go ahead. I took off time and was in the UK for about a year doing a little bit of this and that, and it hit me one day that I have been in love with magazines right from when I was young, I spent a fortune every month buying magazines and I thought why don’t we have a magazine for men here in Nigeria. Genevieve had come out a while before then and it’s for women. A lot of people believe men don’t read magazines in Nigeria but we do and Nigerian men are very stylish and infact we are the most stylish in the world next to Italians so I knew it will do well, I put up a rough plan and started work immediately. Came back spoke to a friend and boom we started. I wouldn’t advise anybody to start that way, because I think, you need to start business properly. But if I had started properly with the business plan the magazine wouldn’t be here, because when you have a plan you will see that you need 20 – 30 million naira to start and you won’t be able to raise that kind of money and the dream fails. We started small and we grew. I didn’t know that much, am not a journalist by profession but I have gone on courses. I have learnt on the job. When we came out with the first one, we had the believe that when you come out with the magazine, you sell it, you get money and use it to print the next one.Behold it doesn’t work that way, we learnt the hard way but I think that’s also the best way, when you learn on the job.
MY THOUGHTS:
1.Start small.
2.Don’t be afraid to pursue your dreams.
3.Just because you studied a particular course in school does’t mean that should be your life work.
4.Discover yourself,don’t be afraid to try different things.
5.Have fun while at it,life is too short to be stuck in a rot.
Watch this space for more… on Abu Tafawa Balewa- editor in chief Mode-Men Magazine as he discusses the brand, challenges and his advice to young upcoming entrepreneurs.

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