By Modupe Gbadeyanka
An alumnus of the Lagos Business School (LBS), Mr Paul Orajiaka, a member of the Advanced Management Programme 20 and the Executive MBA 14, has been announced as an Influential Leader in the 2018 Influential Leaders Challenge of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International.
AACSB International is the world’s largest business education network, which celebrates the positive impact business school graduates make in communities around the globe as part of the 2018 Influential Leaders Challenge.
The challenge honours notable alumni from accredited schools whose inspiring work serves as a model for the next generation of business leaders.
Mr Orajiaka was recognised at the AACSB’s 2018 Deans Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. He was among a group of 29 business pioneers from 13 industry sectors, whose careers are addressing today’s most pressing social, economic, environmental, and educational challenges.
Mr Orajiaka, nominated by Lagos Business School, was honoured for his passion for social entrepreneurship.
His organization, Auldon Toys, launched the Culture vision to find and implement solutions to social, cultural and environmental issues facing the Nigerian child – as these are the class of people his toys business caters for.
Through the African themed dolls, his organisation has ensured an increase in cultural awareness, national pride, unity amongst ethnic divides and the upliftment of schools. Importantly, his organisation has created a product, not just for girls to have dolls that look like them, but to also pass a positive message.
With the Culture Vision, Mr Orajiaka has impacted positive social attributes into the Nigerian girl child, as a happy and inspired childhood creates happy, inspired and powerful women.
According to Mr Orajiaka, LBS helped him to become the person he is today professionally.
“One key takeaway I learnt at LBS is that chasing value firstly in business rather than just a profit-oriented mindset is critical to long-lasting success. An impact focused business model is sure to endear you and your business to the society from which you derive your income,” he said.
“Each honouree from the 2018 class of Influential Leaders reflects the mindset, knowledge, and passion that impactful business leaders must embody to impart a positive change in today’s society,” said Thomas R. Robinson, president and CEO of AACSB. “We would like to thank Mr Paul Orajiaka for demonstrating the true excellence and leadership we wish to see in the world, and we congratulate Lagos Business School for their role in helping to mold a new generation of global business leaders dedicated to driving impact that results in global prosperity.”
Mr Paul Orajiaka and his peers in the 2018 Influential Leaders class were recognised across three categories, namely: Alumni Business Leaders Working in non-profit or Community-Based Organisations – Leaders serving non-profit and community-based organisations are making game-changing impacts—from a local level to a global reach—creating a better society for us all. With initiatives that include navigating the Hurricane Harvey crisis, transforming the lives of more than 150 million children around the world annually, and combating the root causes of poverty, AACSB graduates demonstrate that some of the world’s most impactful work occurs within smaller-sector opportunities.
The second category recognised was the Alumni Business Leaders Advancing Diversity and Inclusion – Advocates for diversity and inclusion are driving transformation across the corporate sphere by upholding a culture of mutual respect and championing the exchange of open ideas. Such efforts are furthered by leaders who forge and refine inclusion practices—based on appreciating differences—to break down cultural stereotypes and patriarchal norms. They also look to inspire today’s youth in under-represented populations to pursue their dreams in non-traditional fields of study and professions.
The final category recognized was the Business Leaders Influencing Business Education – Businesses need students to be workforce-ready upon graduation, making the present a critical time for schools and businesses to work together to meet each other’s needs. Outside of academe, some business leaders are driving fruitful partnerships between the two groups by cultivating a spirit of entrepreneurship and cross-collaborative mindsets. Others are developing free study services—available via a simple digital exchange—to more than 350,000 students globally, advancing access to success for everyone. Inside academe, leaders are transforming institutional culture by encouraging open dialogue between alumni, faculty, staff, business, and students, while investing in promising entrepreneurs across advantaged and disadvantaged regions.
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