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How Smart Companies Are Winning With Theory Y Workers



  • How Smart Companies Are Winning With Theory Y Workers

If there is anything the 21st century has taught us about the competitiveness within industries, it is that size is no more a significant advantage – like it was in the good old days when the big boys blew the smaller guys out of the water. Casting an eye on some of the major industrial disruptions in the past decade, these upsets were caused by smaller, and before then non-entity, organizations. Airbnb disrupting the hospitality industry, Uber in the transportation space, social media platforms becoming the go-to for corporate communication and public relations. The list is a long and very familiar one. As Klaus Schwab puts it, “In the new world, it is not the big fish which eats the small fish, it’s the fast fish which eats the slow fish.”

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The use of the word “Innovation” has seen a massive spike since 1956. Source: Google

Innovation is now at the heart of organizations. A quick look at Google’s Ngram Viewer for the usage of the word “innovation”, as at 1956 – towards the end of the second industrial revolution – the word appeared, in materials available to Google, 0.00061%. By 2008, Google’s last available maximum data range, the word had climb to 0.00211%. The frequency of the usage of the word nicely correlates with its upward trajectory in today’s organizations. Innovation is now driving organizations to go better, faster and smarter. It has been integrated in pretty much most functionalities. From how people are scouted and recruited: think Application Tracking System, professional network websites. To how they do their work: blurring the line between leisure and work in the workspace, home-office flexibility. The tools they use: Customer Relationship Management (CRM) with embedded Artificial Intelligence (AI), productivity tools. You can subtly see innovation written all over. And at the heart of these innovations are… people! Now that is the crux of this gist.


A timeline of the Industrial Revolution. Image credit:

Innovation drives organization but seated in the driver sit of innovation are smart people. People who anticipate the future, change, increase in efficiency thereby productivity. These people rise above the challenges faced and in doing so, provide the solutions that help organizations become the fast fish that eats the slow fish – irrespective of its size. Tying it all together is Douglas McGregor’s theory of people and management style. According to McGregor, there are two types of workplace behavior. The Theory X people are naturally lazy and need increased supervision and hands-on management. Theory Y, on the other hand, are proactive and get things done. They anticipate challenges and take initiative. They do not need to be reminded to do their job, they take pride in doing their job. And right there are the people taking the driver’s seat of innovation.

With workplace being more relaxed and employees given a truck load of trust, the theory Y worker is the one that understands, despite spending 20 minutes in the recreation room playing a game of table soccer, time has been expertly managed so that the tasks of the day gets completed before close of business. The theory Y worker knows, even though they can work from home, their productivity should not be affected by any means. The theory Y worker is smart enough to spend the company’s resources like it’s theirs. Enjoying the perks but being absolutely responsible. Above all, the theory Y worker does not have to wait for their manager to identify where productivity can be increased through. They think three steps ahead of the game and propose these solutions for the growth of the team and company at large.

The result? Organizations end up with an agile workforce that is on a continuous quest to outdo itself. And that puts them on the forefront in the highway of innovation. More responsive, forward-looking, anticipatory and profitable. These organizations also have one thing in common, they attract the next generations of theory Y workers – those still in college – putting themselves in a position to continuously keep innovating and being the fast fish.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Ecobank Group Appoints Jubril Mobolaji Lawal as Regional Executive and Managing Director Designate for Ecobank Nigeria



Jubril Mobolaji Lawal

Ecobank Group, the leading pan-African banking group, announces that Jubril Mobolaji Lawal has been appointed as Regional Executive and Managing Director designate of Ecobank Nigeria, subject to the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The appointment is made ahead of Patrick Akinwuntan’s upcoming retirement, due to him reaching retirement age in January 2022.

Mobolaji Lawal joins Ecobank having been a versatile senior banking executive and digital transformation specialist for over 28 years with Guaranty Trust Bank Plc. He has deep involvement and experience in digital and retail banking, corporate and commercial banking, credit risk management and corporate finance. His previous experience includes being Executive Director at GTBank Plc Nigeria, and Non-Executive Director roles at both GTBank Ghana Limited and Nigeria Interbank Settlement Systems Plc. Mobolaji led the team that envisioned and implemented GTBank Plc’s retail and digital banking strategy to achieve industry-wide leadership over a ten-year period and he introduced new products and solutions that have helped to deepen payments and access to digital financial services in Nigeria.

Mobolaji was selected and appointed as Managing Director designate following a keenly contested selection process, which included both internal and external candidates.

Mobolaji Lawal holds a Bachelor of Law degree from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria; B.L. from the Nigerian Law School and a Master of Business Administration from Oxford University, United Kingdom. He has also attended several executive management and banking specific developmental programmes at leading educational institutions including Harvard Business School, Stanford Graduate School of Business and Institut Européen d’Administration des Affaires (INSEAD).

Commenting on the appointment, Ade Ayeyemi, CEO, Ecobank Group said: “We welcome Mobolaji Lawal to the Ecobank Group and we stand to benefit from the extensive experience that he has acquired in various fields across banking, which will play a major role in continuing to rebuild our franchise in Nigeria. Nigeria is a key market for us, in which we have seen significant improvement over the past three years as we reposition and leverage upon our pan-African strengths in digital products and services, payments and as the go-to-bank for businesses seeking to grasp the growth opportunities being created by the AfCFTA, across all our markets on the continent. I wish Mobolaji the best and assure him of both my support and that of the entire Ecobank Group.”

Mrs. Bola Adesola, the Chairman of the Board of Ecobank Nigeria said: “We look forward to working with Mobolaji and assure him of the full support of the Board, Management and all the staff of Ecobank Nigeria. The business in Nigeria is on the path of transformation and we are confident that Mobolaji will have significant impact in advancing our positive trajectory.”

Mobolaji Lawal will assume the position of Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, upon receiving the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria and after Patrick Akinwuntan retires.

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South Africa Encourages Nigerian Businesses to Expand to the Country



In an effort to improve trade relations between Nigeria and South Africa, the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria Thamsanqa Dennis Mseleku has implored more Nigerian businesses (especially financial institutions) to expand their businesses to South Africa.

The South African representative revealed that the South African consulate was currently working on issuing Nigerian business owners (or operators) visas valid for ten years, in order to further bolster business relationship between both countries.

This was mentioned by Mseleku yesterday on ‘The Morning Show’, a programme which is monitored closely by Arise news, on which he also noted that the bilateral agreements being signed by both countries would be fully executed in the coming years.

According to Mseleku, Nigerian businesses are operating in South Africa, with the issue being raised back in 2019 when President Buhari was present in South Africa specifically talking about Access Bank and Air Peace. Mseleku stated that Access Bank has since opened up a branch in South Africa, and Air Peace is now making flights to and from South Africa.

Mseleku then said,”So, the issue is that we must encourage more businesses that want to go to South Africa from Nigeria to do so particularly in the financial sector.”

This prospective deal between both countries is promising, because the encouragement of Nigerian businesses to come into South Africa may eventually lead to more South African businesses coming into Nigeria to operate. The moves will undoubtedly boost the economies of both countries.

It may also encourage other African countries to engage in trades and have bilateral or multilateral agreements with other African countries, boosting economies across the entire continent.

Mseleku also noted that some South African countries were pulling out of Nigeria, which he cited as one of the reasons for the visit of the South African President.

He also addressed the inaccessibility of visa to business personnel, saying that the country is agreeing and would go on implementing longer term visas for them. He then mentioned the 10 years visa which the country is considering.

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All Business Stakeholders Will Benefit from Stronger ESG Policies, Says GlobalData



The age-old view that addressing environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues will make a dent in profits is a myth, says GlobalData. The leading data and analytics company notes that businesses that embrace all three elements of ESG will actually outperform their peers.

Cyrus Mewawalla, Head of Thematic Research at GlobalData, comments: “The reluctance of many CEOs to fully engage with sustainability can be attributed to the age-old view that it will hurt profits. However, GlobalData’s research suggests the opposite: CEOs that are too slow to improve their company’s approach to ESG will see an exodus of customers and a drop in profits far sooner than they ever imagined.”

GlobalData’s latest thematic report, ‘Thematic Research: ESG – Top Trends by Sector‘, notes that, while saving the planet used to just equate to implementing sustainable practices such as ‘limiting the use of plastics’ and ‘reducing carbon footprint’, ‘sustainability’ has morphed into an umbrella term that includes all aspects of ESG issues. The company proposes an ESG framework that identifies key areas in which companies should invest. One of these is climate change.

Luke Gowland, Analyst in the Thematic team at GlobalData, comments: “With COP26 setting the agenda on climate change, companies are focusing their efforts on tackling carbon emissions by switching to renewable energy and undertaking energy efficiency projets. However, companies must excel across all three aspects of ESG, and not overlook the importance of strong social performance and having the correct governance structures in place to achieve ESG goals.”


Citizens, governments, regulators, and the media are turning the spotlight on corporations and demanding action. Social inequality, corruption, tax avoidance, and a lack of action on climate change are all issues that companies must now address head-on, in full public view.

Since Q1 2021,GlobalData has been asking respondents to detail their company’s approach to ESG goals In Thematic Sentiment Analysis, Q3 2021, conducted in Q3 2021, nearly a quarter of respondents thought that, for most companies, ESG was just a marketing exercise.

Gowland continues: “Our latest sentiment analysis report shows that more companies have changed their behavior to meet ESG goals (33%) than not (22%). While the attitudes towards ESG are improving, there is a long way to go.”

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