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Emelda Mwamanga: Networking is a corner stone of any success

Christina Sudi, one of the beneficiaries of the training, admitted at the end of the session that she was empowered enough “to think outside the box. “I can now feel this urge to change the way I conduct my business to become more successful,” she admitted.

Emelda, founder and editor of Bang magazine subscribed in and outside the country, shares her fulfilled dream of investing in media business and how she overcomes daily ups and downs. She started her speech by reminding the women of the power within themselves that can mold them to become whoever they aspired to be.

More than 50 women, who gathered at Via Via gardens in the heart of Arusha city, were employees in tour operators and hotels, Tanzania National Park, Kilimanjaro International Airport, Arusha International Conference Centre. Others were small entrepreneurs who have invested in gemstones, jewels, stationeries, bridal wear and events co-ordinations.

The objective of the gathering was to bring together women from diverse fields based in Arusha town to learn, socialize, network and strategise on how they can promote each other. Emelda then, gave her testimony on how she managed to reach her dream.

“I am where I am because I clinged to the philosophy of Believe and Never Give Up” she said. Just like most of the young people she admitted to have struggled between pleasing her parents’ expectations of becoming a prominent lawyer and her own dream of venturing into infotainment world.

“My parents admired achievements of my uncle Harrison Mwakyembe and wished I could follow his steps,” she said. Harrison Mwakyembe, is a prominent lawyer in criminology and constitutional. He is also an MP for Kyela constituency and the minister for transportation.

However, Emelda says she defied her parents’ wishes by studying Human Resource Management, practiced it a bit with Cocacola Tanzania and later quit to follow her path. “Despite of the good pay at Cocacola still I felt something was missing,” she confessed. Eventually, she asked her father for a tiny space from his offices to place a desk where she worked from to start Bang Magazine.

The first print outs were from her personal savings and contributions from her parents. The copies met a lot of public criticism on language and lay out mistakes; she said adding that she took the criticism as lessons to improve on the Magazine. Her hard work also earned her participation to a mentorship programme by the US State Department, where she was mentored by Anne Moore, retired CEO and Chairperson of Time Inc.

Emelda, married with a one year and four months old daughter shares three tips for becoming successful woman, which are putting high expectations on yourself, choosing positive role models and embracing networking. “When we fail to expect so much out of our lives, we tend to settle for less,” she cautions.

But successful people are always trying to raise their standards. In most cases, she says, when ordinary people achieve something, they tend to become complacent to their current position in life but when successful people achieve something they are always looking for that next plateau. She recommends women to at least have one aspect of their life where they are constantly raising their standards.

“It gives you that feeling of constant growth and progress which gives you that sensation of being alive,” she says. On the aspect of finding Positive Role Models she says they embody characteristics that you would like to cultivate for yourself. Role models can be found anywhere, in literature, books, magazines, TV shows, or in your real-life interactions with friends, family, and other strangers.

“I am so blessed to have met in person my top of the list role models talk shows hosts Oprah Winfrey and Tyra Banks,” she boasts. On Networking she said, your network is your net worth and that networking is a corner stone of any type of success … be it job, business or life in general.

“You might have heard the old saying, “its not what you know, it’s who you know However, considering the way the world is shaping up today it’s even more important to remember that it’s not only who you know, it’s also who knows you”, she said.

Emelda concurs with Robert Kiyoski, who said “The riches people in the world build networks. Everyone else looks for work.” Opportunities are there for women to prosper be it in business or carrier and so the challenge is for women themselves to take charge to climb on the top and shine.

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Author: MONICA LUWONDO in Arusha

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