7 months ago

From Vision to Mission

 

Ok, lets reiterate “our” vision;

To restore, advance, master and sustain the ethical growth and development of every facet of the Textile industry in Nigeria that stands uncompromised in integrity to its workforce, consumers and environment (our land, water & air). 

 

From my understanding, a vision statement simply sums up what the desired goals are or states what is to be achieved.

 

Now let’s tackle what our mission statement is.

Our mission statement is a guide for today – how we hope to achieve our Vision!

 

So, here we go;

 

We will restore the textile industry in Nigeria to a thriving sector by gaining relevant skills, partnering with industry experts and acquiring/implementing innovative methods that will foster an organic and solid growth.

 

We will  advance the textile industry in Nigeria by being vocal about what needs to be done and following through with resolutions step by step.

 

We will become masters in the textile industry of Nigeria by remaining consistently proactive to learn, grow and develop every aspect of our industry and its people. 

 

We will sustain the growth of the textile industry in Nigeria by ensuring that our workers and consumers are treated honestly and with respect and also by challenging our capabilities in seeking creativity within our people and by ensuring that our environment is highly protected against any forms of pollutants. 

 

Seems like quite a task ahead of us, but we are well able! If we break each step further, I think you’ll see that it’s not that heavy at the end of the day; just takes persistence in following through step by step.

My desire is that you’ll be pulled-in to either want to act in your own way towards the calling or industry in your heart, or you’ll have valuable input into what I’m doing and want to be part of it.

My goal is that as I grow in my knowledge of what needs to be done, that you’ll also grow and apply this in your own journey towards making Nigeria a better/stronger nation and whether that means you’ll tackle the health care system or you’ll be in the textile industry is not the issue; just be about the work you’ve been called to do, that’s all.

L.o.Z

7 months ago

Having a Plan – Vision cont.

 

 

Vision part B: sharing a vision is a beautiful thing, but how do we take that vision from the people’s heads to their hearts; where it will stick, and be nurtured and worked upon diligently?

I’m pretty sure that most people are willing to believe in the greatness of Nigeria but are clouded by their own personal and immediate needs, which is very understandable. I also know that to speak of lofty ideas to come isn’t going to motivate people who are truly experiencing very trying times right now. What I propose is that we start with a prototype – taking this process step by step; we implement a concise and structured format that’s derived from highly knowledgeable industry experts from around the world and follow through the process diligently like a scientist in a lab! Once we’ve gotten the ideal outcome that we’re striving for, we duplicate it.

We work our way progressively through each tier of the textile industry and work on ensuring we can replicate the exact processes needed, from the spinning and weaving mills, to the printing and dying factories. So let’s say for instance we start with one farmland to create our first cotton farm prototype. Once we’re able to harvest to our standard of excellence (which will be following a global standard), we then focus our attention on ensuring that we get the next step right; the process invovled in spinning cotton and again, our attention is given to make sure that we’re utilizing advanced equipments in deriving the quality that’s needed in this phase. Of course then we move onto the next step of weaving and again we figure out what works excellently best that can be replicated around the country, and once we’ve solved that, we advance to the next stage and the next, until we’ve completed the entire ecosystem of textile production and distribution.

In my opinion, if we’re able to show the people what we’ve been able to do with one model, I strongly believe that other stake-holders will want to be part of this and see to the growth of the industry together.

That of course sounds so easy, but why not? it makes pefect sense to me…

L.o.Z

7 months ago

Having a Plan – Vision

 

I believe it was Dr. Myles Munroe who said ” When purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable” – the very fact that we as a people are where we are today, and speaking of the textile industry in particular, is in my opinion, a combination of multiple things but, I think it starts with the fact that we didn’t and still don’t realize what we have (natural resources, etc) and because of this, we did not value it, nor did we understand its purpose, therefore, we abused it.

So what’s the way forward?

For me it starts with analysing what we have right now, figuring out what needs to be done to improve what we have, embarking on a strategic plan that excludes being held captive by the constant changing government policies that may or may not favor us, and working hard to ensure that the vision is realized in integrity of hearts and with a full understanding of our purpose. Just to touch on purpose a bit; we might be the ones to lay the ground work, but we may not be the ones who’ll fully see the harvest of our works, and we need to realize that that is perfectly OK. A lot of times we want returns on our investments, immediately! How about we focus on the generations to come who will thank heavens that we cared about them. Right now, it’s all about rebuilding our land and deciding that we aren’t going to be part of those who are abusing our nation and its people anymore.

A plan! A roadmap! A blueprint! … 

My plan is simple: (naturally there is A LOT that can be said on each point that I will present, but that’s where I give you the opportunity to add to it and lets get cracking together – team work) So basically, don’t look at this as the master plan; it needs more minds to make it perfectly fit. Ok enough ramblings, lets start from somewhere;

 

Vision: what do I see? I have this ambitious vision of what the textile industry could look like, and what the effects of having a thriving textile industry would do for the communities. My vision of this thriving industry does not take its cue from any previous models that exist in the industry worldwide that entail insensible work ethics of factory workers chugging long hours, the use of child labor, pollutions, etc.

On the other hand, I see the Nigerian textile workers as people who are treated with the utmost respect, they are valued, they are hardworking, they are well compensated, they are creative, they are inventive, they are passionate about their land and have a great understanding of the effects of chemicals on our land and will not stand for any form of pollution. I see States in Nigeria that are excellent for cotton farming excelling with technologically advanced machinery that makes their work-load a lot lighter and more productive. I see our cotton farmers taking pride in their farms and churning out the BEST cotton we could possibly derive from our land. I see an industry where there is authenticity in every tier of the textile industry’s ecosystem. I see an industry that brings about the re-birth of the need for more technical schools throughout the nation. I see our industry excelling because we care more about our future, we care about our people, we care more for the natural resources we’ve been blessed with and we care a lot more for integrity and honesty above living the norms of mediocrity and corruption.

 

In a nutshell, the vision simply states;

 

To restore, advance, master and sustain the ethical growth and development of every facet of the Textile industry in Nigeria that stands uncompromised in integrity to its workforce, consumers and environment (our land, water & air).

 

I truly believe that this vision must be shared with others who care about this industry but may have given up hope in its revival. Let the word spread that we want to tackle this one step at a time; no one is in a rush, we are ready to take our time and work on laying the right foundations. When a vision is shared, it’s up to everyone involved to receive it, believe it and work towards actualizing it. This can’t happen if people’s mindsets are blocked to the possibilities that are being presented.

How to tackle mindsets?? hmmm… lets make that our next post (part B of Vision I guess) Stay tuned…

L.o.Z

7 months ago

Why is the Nigerian Textile Industry lagging behind

 

I’ll tell you what happened with the Nigerian Textile Industry, and please, I don’t do ginormous grammar, so forgive my simplicity, because this is the way I understand it.

From the little street knowledge of the former state of the Nigerian Textile Industry, we’ve heard or read about how the industry hired at its prime, conservatively about 300,000 people. That’s massive! Especially because our past “glory days” wasn’t truly even our fullest possibilities or potential.

Between the 1970’s and 80’s, the industry was truly note worthy. That started to dwindle in the 90’s and has since then been almost nonexistent in the 2000’s.

The main factors that I’ve gathered that caused the decline in the industry are namely;

  • OIL!!! Basically attention was given to this new baby to the detriment of the other industry.
  • POWER! We could go on and on about how we don’t have consistent power supply throughout the country and that is a huge problem.
  • CORRUPTION!!! We can’t talk about power and not follow that with the way our dear country has suffered in the hands of extremely vision-less, greedy, dishonest, unlawful, (I could go on & on) so-called leaders for almost forever and we the people just watched them ruin our land and future, well until now right? I think we’re on a better track.
  • “CHINA MADE” = BETTER MADE (mindset of people) = LOWER PRICE!   “China” (I speak not necessarily of the country and citizenry, plus, it encompasses other nations). We turned to “China” made goods and the policies in place helped to booster this new love with imported goods. Can we speak honestly (as we already are)? A good chunk of imported goods that are brought into the Nigerian market are so below standard that one wonders why we don’t even love ourselves enough to buy better quality from outside; for the public that is.
  • INSECURITY (relatively new problem, but still a major problem!) If you ask me, and thank you for asking, the main reason why we even have Nigerians WILLING to kill themselves and their fellow citizens, in my view, is because we and the leaders didn’t have a vision for northern Nigeria when we took away a huge chunk of their livelihood and left them vulnerable; the textile industry was synonymous with the north.
  • LACK OF SKILLED (TECHNICAL SAVVY) WORKERS! No one can blame the younger generation in not paying attention to the area of our textile industry because seriously speaking, are these courses being taught anymore?

I’m sure there are other things that contributed to where we’re at in this industry today, so please feel free to share.

L.o.Z

11 months ago

How textiles found me

 

I’d like to give a little history; it’s important to understand where a person is coming from so that hopefully their idealogies and beliefs are better absorbed! don’t you think so too?

I’ll spare you the nitty gritty stuff, but it’s cool to start from where I come from because a bit of what I’ll be writing about will reflect back to this place.

So, I was born in Zaria city, which is part of Kaduna State (northern region of Nigeria). I was partially raised in Zaria/Abuja and the US. It’s partial only because I spent half my life in both places and I’m still in the latter.

I can’t say that I grew up loving or paying extra attention to textiles/fabrics or even fashion… fast forward I’m a High School senior in the States who needs to seriously think about my future because of college applications! Looking back it wasn’t a pretty time because I felt like I was the only one who didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. That changed a couple of months to graduation when a close friend of the Family says to me, “why don’t you find a way to get someone to pay you for all these scribbles you do”… I had heard about the Fashion Institute of Technology in NY through a fellow senior at school and so I went to their website and looked through every major and when I read about the Textile/Surface Design course, and also got to see the student artworks, I fell in love with the course.

A long story that’s greatly been shortened, I found myself working as a Bedding textile designer for a Home Fashions company in NY after I graduated, and although I enjoyed “work/projects”, I felt like I needed something else and so I went back to Nigeria for a year and enrolled in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC)… my heart was definitely with my country, but now I know that I came back because I didn’t have a solid plan, and truth be told, I didn’t know what my purpose was and so I came back to what I was familiar with. Anyways, I’m back in the States and working in the same industry again and kinda like deja vu, I return back to Nigeria a couple of years later, but this time because of a relationship (marriage) and stayed for about another year and came back to the States with my family.

Ever since I started working for my first employer, I harnessed this dream of someday being this entreprenuer etc I felt the dream was so large that I kept it in my back-pocket and just wished it would somehow work itself out… another thing was I wasn’t sure if I truly loved it enough because I’m passionate about different things… when I would admit it to myself that I actually loved what I did, I didn’t think I had what it would take to be a successful designer. Now I know why they say you must believe in yourself; I get it.

So how did I finally get to this point where I believe that what I have is a gift from God and I must be a faithful steward of it? The passions and desires have evolved over the years, but now more so about the people; how can I change the course of the textile industry in Nigeria for the very best? Where people decades from now will be proud of this industry – won’t it be great if we become a force to be reckoned with? This change within me that realizes it’s more than being in my comfort zone took going through some tough times to see beyond myself and cause me to be grateful for this journey and live for a greater purpose, which is, to impact the lives of my fellow Nigerians in the area that I’m gifted in/have strengths/passions etc.

Come along with me on this lovely yet unknown journey because only God knows where this will ultimately lead us… but of course it’s guaranteed to be a great end!

L.o.Z