My NextGen Experience – Sharon

My NextGen Experience – Sharon

“What exactly is the challenge with these businesses, and how can I help them?” was a question that plagued my mind as a credit analyst with a development finance institution in Nigeria.

My role was to facilitate capital injection into businesses with the potential to become global players, and while some actualized these potentials, most remained what they were – potentials. I shared these concerns with a senior colleague, and he jokingly retorted, “you should try consulting since you like these kinds of problems”.  

My application to join the second cohort of AFG’s NextGen program was fast, exciting and successful. A key part of the program was an all-expense-paid trip to Accra for my induction and training. As a result, I was able to meet and engage AFG’s core team physically, try out a different restaurant every day, work by the beach if I desired (on weekends, of course, 😉) and share real-life experiences with people of varying backgrounds. It was, indeed, a fulfilling experience.  

The training program was thoroughgoing; a perfect amalgam of virtual and physical training, primary and secondary research, problem-solving, real-life case studies, and navigating the complex world of “biases” and “frameworks”. We had endless brainstorming sessions, and I genuinely thought the assignments were never going to end 😭. 

In 8 months, I have worked on national and international engagements across different sectors, industries and countries, all from the comfort of my home and sometimes in my favourite sweatshirt from “Forever 21”. I have had the opportunity to work alongside business leaders and key experts with decades of experience and contribute to global corporations’ development in my continent whilst working with the most supportive, intentional and growth-oriented team members.  

I can confidently say that the NextGen journey and its experiences so far have been instrumental to my growth and development as an individual and as a consultant, and I have never been more excited about my future! 

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