Jane Chris Ezetah is a writer, content creator, brand influencer and the managing director of Jatomara Emporium. She just released her new book ‘12 Shades of Jane’, and she would soon be going on an all-expense paid trip to Dubai for a contest she recently won. In this interview by KINGSLEY ALUMONA, she speaks about her university experience, her work as a brand influencer, her new book, her aspirations for 2021, among other things.
Which of your university experiences would you say impacted more on your career and development?
I studied Theatre Arts at the Imo State University, Owerri, Imo State. The experience that impacted more on my career and development would be my appointment as my class’s assistant course representative. It was a privilege for me to get first-hand information from lecturers. Also the days we did our stage performance, radio and television productions, made me envisage more on all I dreamt to become in life.
Do you practise theatre arts, like in movies or theatres?
Yes I do. I’m a certified scriptwriter. I’ve written scripts for films and stage performances. I wrote the re-enactment of the popular ‘Lion King’ story ‘Ezeagu’ which was performed on stage in Owerri for a reputable brand. Aside writing, I’m also a creative director. I’ve directed a lot of stage plays and dramas. I’m looking forward to directing for films.
You pride yourself as a brand influencer, how do you do this?
I carry myself with confidence and poise. So, when I attend events, people want to know where I get my clothes, shoes, hair, etc. from. I often get questions like: Who made your dress? Where did you buy your fabrics? Can I get their contacts? When I give them the contacts, the businesses or brands, in appreciation, give me some of their products free or for a huge discount, believing I’ll bring them more clients. It’s on this note brand influencing began for me. I’ve also had business owners pay me to help them advertise their goods and services on my social media handles, especially on my Facebook page. I’m currently doing something with a cosmetic company GLOWSENSE, that we’ll be unveiled soon.
Your portfolio says that you are a business trainer and coach. What inspired your choice of this career?
In recent times, the social media space has become the easiest, cheapest and fastest way to build remarkable personal and business brands, but a lot of people don’t know this. All people do is post pictures and contents that are not valuable. So, I saw the need to begin to enlighten people on how to brand themselves and businesses for global relevance without hitches. So far I’ve taken over sixty people through the journey, and it’s been amazing.
Unemployment in Nigeria is getting higher and higher every year. As a business coach, what do you think graduates could do to distinguish themselves in the face of this economic and political hardship?
It’s an error for anyone to rely on the government at a time like this in Nigeria. So, I often tell graduates and the unemployed to try and acquire a skill. Look around you for a problem you can solve. For every solution you proffer lies all that you need to move on to your next level.
You recently won an all-expense trip to Dubai. Tell us about it.
There was a contest notice on Facebook and Instagram in December, 2020, for people to make a 59-second video for Vantage Migration, an educational consultancy that helps graduates secure admission and scholarship abroad, owned by a Canadian-based Nigerian Dr. Linda Iheme. When I saw the post, at first, I was reluctant to enter for it, but then something in me kept pushing me to apply. I applied, and made a catchy video. I did a lot of campaign on my social media platforms, and to my greatest surprise, when the result was announced, I emerged the winner.
You are the convener of the social media initiative, ‘SPEAK OUT WOMEN’. Briefly tell us about it. Does it have a feminist or political agenda to it?
‘SPEAK OUT WOMEN’ platform was created on the 17th December, 2018. It’s geared towards helping women live their full potentials, irrespective of what life throws at them. I realised many young women, both single and married, have been fed with lies that the men are the ones to take up their responsibilities. This leaves some women comfortably sitting and waiting for a man for virtually everything, when God has given them all it takes to do more, be more and even be a huge support system to the man. Our platform is also where woman share their challenges and are advised. We’re not a feminist group, and we don’t have any political agenda.
Are you a proponent of ‘what a man can do a woman can do it better’?
I believe that we, as humans, don’t have limitations. Your finance, level of education, race and gender shouldn’t prevent you from attaining great feat. Irrespective of the fact that you’re a female, you can do anything a man can do if you put your heart to it.
Concerning our nation, good governance has nothing to do with gender. If you care for the masses and believe in creating an enabling environment for everyone to thrive, this would be made possible irrespective of your gender. The mindset is a key factor here. If you’re consumed with an entitlement mentality, you’ll only seek to enrich yourself.
Do you believe a woman would soon rule Nigeria as president?
With the way the world is evolving, nothing is impossible. Woman, unlike before, are now occupying big position in the global space. For some time now, women have emerged presidents in some part of the world and even in Africa, and I believe that one day Nigeria will have a female president.
If you were to be that female president, what three things would you do to make the country a better place?
If I become Nigerian president, the first thing I would do is to create job opportunities. There are no jobs and that has made our youths to involve themselves in fraudulent and criminal activities. I would see to it that every girl child is off the street, empowered and equipped enough to fit into the society. I would also focus on the agricultural sector, because people need food to survive.
Your profile says you are a writer. How do you influence the society with your writing?
I’m a content creator and a creative writer. I started writing as a little girl. I remember always buying exercise book just to write meaningful and meaningless things. Through my writing, I’ve helped a lot of people toll the right path. I’ve also written a few articles to correct some ills in our society.
Briefly tell us about your recent book, ’12 Shades of Jane’, and what inspired you to write it?
‘12 Shades of Jane’ is the story of my life—the good, the bad and the ugly—in one piece. I’m one young lady who had her life planned and figured out. I thought it was based on intellect or been detailed, but life gave me the opposite of what I bargained for, and I thought to share every stage with anyone who it resonates with. A lot of us are quick to clap for successful people, but we’re always not aware of their stories. So, I’ve decided to share mine. It’s not that I’ve gotten to that place I want to be, but I feel the stage I’m right now I can share my life story with people to learn from.
Tell us something about your family and how they help you cope with the stress of work and life.
I’ve an amazing immediate and extended family members. They’re very supportive of my dreams, and they believe in me. The media work can be so tasking, especially for those of us who consistently have to train people. My husband understands the media work can be tasking, and he supports when he has to.
What are your aspirations for 2021?
My aspiration for 2021 is to put in more effort to the things of God. Without God, there is not much we can achieve. I’m looking forward to establishing a balance in my life and work for the sake of my mental health. In 2020, it was work, work and work, ignoring my personal life. I don’t want to toe that line this year—that’s why I’m excited about the Dubai trip. It’s indeed a good way to start the year.
What do you wish for your birthday this year?
My birthday is March 2nd, and I want a car for my birthday.
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