By Ibrahim Sani Shawai
“This award goes to the employee who has improved KEDCO’s brand visibility in a positive manner.’’
The above was from the citation when I was honoured at the annual 2019 MD’s Award Night of Kano Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO).
The life-line award was in recognition of how my team, as Head of Corporate Communication, strategically and professionally managed both the internal and external stakeholders through effective public relations tools to uplift the image of the company.
I am grateful to Almighty Allah for giving me a caring Chief Executive Officer and hardworking team in the Corporate Communications unit.
In contemporary times, innovation is critical to every company as it lays the groundwork for continued growth by introducing new solutions for your customers and prospects; but even more importantly, it creates excitement for employees and boosts their job satisfaction and morale. This was exactly what I conceptualized the very day I was appointed to serve as the Head of Corporate Communications Unit of KEDCO, one of the biggest Electricity distribution companies in Nigeria.
Having served in both public and private sectors at local, National and international levels, criss-crossing many countries, I know managing the image and reputation of corporate organisation with millions of customers and consumer of electricity, a necessity would not be a tea party.
As it is often said if a job is worth doing, doing it well remains the only option and goal. Having met a system on ground, I sustain and improve on some of the communication strategies in place towards rebranding, re-birthing and realigning KEDCO to a new reality.
Beyond PR tools of Publications, Media Relations, Crisis Communication, Event and Reputation Management, working in profit-making organisation, we also support departments responsible for marketing and sale with innovative communication strategies.
Today, there are better working relations with the media while KEDCO’s relating with internal and external stakeholders, especially major consumers have been smoothened.
It is necessary to state that we also leveraged on social media platforms to expand our capacity to reach our customers which attracted a surge in followership on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other modern channels of communication.
One positive I have come to love and learn while working and interacting with staff is that the staff have a performance culture and a knack for achievement through constant renewal of commitments in order to enhance their performance as well as to boost customers’ satisfaction.
I can’t also forget in a hurry my series of engagements with all the Management staff. They are so professionally athletic and have the capacity to chase any vision and mission. Interaction with them is always an experience to share.
One of the most challenging moments for me personally within the last 12 months was the advent of Coronavirus. Everything is now being formatted. This has presented us with a challenge which I and my team have risen to through massive awareness in partnership with the media to educate and enlighten our numerous customers and stakeholders on the various online alternative platforms that will make them comfortable and satisfied.
According to Winston Churchill “success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts”, during the face-off between the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and KEDCO which remains one of my daunting challenges, I and my team were able to deploy all professional mechanism and human relation management tools at our disposal to ensure we come out strong without creating enemies.
The level of professionalism with which the TCN/KEDCO face-off was handled left everyone surprised at how we were able to swerve the steering and that was the reason for the 2020 African Public Relations Association AWARD of Excellence on Media Relations given to KEDCO.
Within the last 12 months, I and my team have been honoured, recognised, commended, however, I have decided to leave the section of my achievements and awards out of this piece, I sincerely count on history to in due course tell that aspect of my diary in KEDCO.
Ibrahim Sani Shawai is KEDCO’s Head of Corporate Communication and can be reached via email@example.com