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Academic Research Career In Nigeria: Ways Of Becoming Successful



academic research

Academic Research Career In Nigeria: Ways Of Becoming Successful

Academic research positions are not all the same. They differ substantially among institutions. The positions are very different depending on what is expected of faculty members. There is a broad spectrum with respect to the amount and type of teaching required as well as the amount of protected time for research, start-up arrangements and additional resources available to faculty members. Therefore, it is expected that you have a good idea of what is most suitable for your goals as you consider the work distribution that comes with the various positions. As a result of the above stated fact, we will look at the various positions you can hold if you want to have a career in academic research before we will look at some of the tips required to succeed.

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Various Positions For Academic Research

  1. Research

This is the foremost aspect of academic research. Here, it will be required of you to own a laboratory if it is in natural sciences. You will most likely recruit laboratory personnel as you progress and secure funding for the research. For those in social sciences and Arts, you might not need a laboratory as they perform more with secondary data and survey research. This sounds very easy which it is but it can become very complicated if you don’t get it right. There is actually more to it than meets the eye. For beginners, you have to work on your instincts for choosing good research projects that is of significant impact that obviously has a short term goals that are reasonable and can develop into a long-term programmatic emphases. This is necessary because you need to attract fund from multiple sources and the above listed instructions will test the viability of your research. You should work with senior faculty members who are willing to provide feedback on papers and grant applications. Always seek the advice of colleagues no matter your level for it can always help.

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At this stage I shouldn’t tell you the importance of communication to your research. You must develop your writing and speaking skills because you have to be in constant communication with your laboratory staff and students, your departmental and faculty colleagues and professional peer groups. This establishes you as an independent investigator with your own ideas and research programs. Networking and collaborations are also of essence here.

Your ability to manage funds referred to fiscal management skills and the ability to manage your workers referred to as personnel management skills must be honed and developed. This is important for efficient and effective running of your laboratory. You of course are expected to make mistakes as you go on about recruiting your staff. Develop the skill by learning from your mistakes and the mistakes of others

  1. Teaching Students


Another aspect of academic research is teaching students. This of course is dependent on your position. You may be required to teach undergraduates and train them in your laboratory. You may also be needed to teach and sponsor graduate students, educate professional students and train post doctoral fellows. You know, getting to give your best especially in conveying information to others requires a lot of practice. Getting your students to reach that level of ecstasy in learning is both challenging and rewarding. As far as teaching goes, irrespective of the size; little or big, you should do it very well. You might want to take your time to make your presentations clear, level-appropriate and relevant.

  1. Training students

Training as part of academic research is closely linked with teaching but it is more technical. Here, you are expected to help students develop their own skills at problem-solving, conducting research and writing. This is very fulfilling and rewarding. It has the capacity to create new scientists while also advancing your research. These new scientists can also go on to have a very successful career and make productive contributions which I believe will make you very proud. The important skill sets required here are patience and firmness as you develop the training style that works for you. These skills are important because it is more time consuming to help a student develop independent research skills than simply dictating a research protocol to a technician.

  1. Service

Service is also another aspect of your academic research career. To become a successful member of your faculty, you will need to perform some service for your department, institution and profession. These services can come in the form of manuscript reviews and possibly, participation in the review panels and committees. These services will require you to be active in professional societies. This enhances your career undoubtedly. You are advised to ease into services slowly as your career moves up the lane. These activities can be very satisfying, increase your scientific network and open up new collaborative opportunities as well as enhancing your recognition locally and at the national level in preparation for promotion and tenure. On the other hand, if not properly managed, they can become distractions that make you feel good and useful but ultimately divert your attention from your research and publications which are the primary evidence of your academic research career. It therefore becomes a delicate matter that has to be handled very well.

How To Prepare For Academic Research Career

From all we have written above, it seems that academic career is cumbersome. It sounds like a lot of work are needed which I should tell you is definitely true. But members of various institutions across the world have done it and are doing it, why can’t you do it if you have interest in that aspect. You can do it by developing your style and learning from your mistakes and developing good scientific skills and instincts. You will definitely be heading for successful landing if you have strong publications with a number of first-author publications. Below are some of the things you will be required to keep in mind.

  1. Life continues while you are in training and beyond

    Your career path may take some twists, turns and even pauses as a result of personal or financial circumstances or other events beyond your control. They are not meant to discourage you rather they should spur you to do more.


  1. Develop the work ethic, skills and experience

    These are the things that make you marketable. Work on them over time and you will master them and perform optimally.

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  1. Be Intentional and Decisive about your Career Decisions:

    As much as your situation allows, be intentional about your career decisions. Know what you want and try to stick to it. Always make the most of opportunities that present themselves, even if they do not seem to be getting you where you want to be – you cannot anticipate how they will benefit you later on.



  1. Recognize that your research emphasis and career goals may change over time

    Certainly your research approach and toolbox will change as you take advantage of new technologies. In addition, you may modify your goals at a later stage in your career. For example, I gradually developed an interest in administration in addition to research and teaching, but only after my research program was well established and my children mostly grown.

You see, there is no particular way doing it. You can be what you want in the academic research field. Know when to say no and when to accept changes. Decisions like this make you and your career.



Ossi Samuel is a mafian thinker, an avid reader and writer, and political analyst. Am a humanitarian and fun loving person. I love Tech by the way and will always have your time if you have any ideas. I can be reached on Facebook


A Brief Analysis Of The Nigerian Paint Industry



For decades, Paint manufacturing companies have long been in operation in Nigeria, mostly as subsidiaries of foreign paint companies. As time passed, however, indigenous paint industries sprung up and completely bought over the shares of these foreign firms and continued to expand with every passing year. Several technological advancements have been witnessed since then, with the Nigerian paints industry contributing a significant quota to Nigeria’s economy and employment scheme.

The existence of paint manufacturing companies in Nigeria dates back to as early as the nineteen sixties. Recently, there has been a high demand for paint due to the increase in construction of buildings for private and commercial purposes. This factors thus makes the paint industry a profitable one to invest in.

An Analysis of the Nigerian paints industry

A Brief Analysis Of The Nigerian Paint Industry

A Brief Analysis Of The Nigerian Paint Industry

It has been estimated that the about 128 million litres of paints are consumed in Nigeria within a year. In the year 2012 alone, the Nigerian paints and coatings industry was estimated to be worth about $200m. this grew to about $218m by 2013, signifying an estimated 9.01% growth rate.

There are two major components of the Nigerian paints market. Lack of sufficient access to funds and technical imbalances needed for the production and management of industrial coatings constitutes a major yardstick for distinguishing between the industry players. The first sector is the organized sector which comprises of companies possessing sufficient capital and efficient distribution system.

The second sector is the decorative paint sector, which houses both the organized and unorganized players. This component does not need advanced technological inputs. With a good governmental backing, it is quite easy for new entrants into the Nigerian paint market to thrive in the system.

This sector is dominated by about 5 key companies, each of which’s annual revenue is estimated to exceed $7m, with several other small and medium-scale companies scattered across the country.

So, as it stands, the decorative sector of the Nigerian paints industry accounts for about 60% of the total sales volume and/or value. The industrial coatings segment of the market, on the other hand, is said to constitute about 40% of the total sales volume and 29% of total production volume.

As Frost & Sullivan report, in 2012, the decorative paints & coatings sector of the Nigerian paints industry was said to possess a significant synergy with the real estate industry and estimated at 71% of the overall volume of coatings and pains in the country.

Nigerian paint industry Regulatory Bodies and Associations

The regulatory body for the paint industry in Nigeria is the standard organization of Nigeria (SON).

They are entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring that all manufacturing industries in Nigeria are duly certified, their products are safe and guarantee maximum consumer satisfaction through compliance with government policies.

SON encourages healthy competition amongst manufacturers and also give room for continuous improvement on quality of manufactured products.

Paint Industry Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMA)

Asides SON, another regulatory body in the paint industry is the PMA. PMA caters to the welfare of the Nigerian paint industry. It is headed by a chairman and serves as a voice as well as a monitoring body for paint manufacturers in Nigeria.

PMA caters generally for issues bothering on productivity and development of the industry. In 2016, an exhibition was commenced which now holds yearly.

The exhibition which is centered on annual raw materials, equipment and painting show held on the 23rd of October and was tagged “PMA Nigeria Coating Show”.

The event had exhibitors from the United Kingdom, Germany, Greece, Turkey, South Africa and India in attendance. The major aim of the exhibition is to develop strategies on how to handle the issue of high cost and scarcity of raw materials for local production which is a major challenge faced in the industry and to promote paint Technology by sourcing for local contents.

PMA (Paints manufacturers association of Nigeria) functions collectively with SON (standard Organization of Nigeria) to guarantee an acceptable global quality standard for manufactured products.

Challenges and Prospects of the Nigerian Paint Industry

These include:


The paint industry is one of the most neglected in Nigeria. There are no incentives provided and routine checks are not always carried out. This, in turn, puts a restriction on the percentage of the paint industry’s contribution to the gross domestic product of the country.

Also, the lack of an efficient regulatory system increases the emergence of new industries which lead to a decline in the standard of products manufactured.


This can be said to be a major limitation for investors in the industry. These facilities include: constant power supply, access to funding, unavailability of raw materials, lack of proper facilities for certification and test purposes.

Prospects of the Nigerian Paint industry.

These include:


Due to the effort of the Paint Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the standard organization of Nigeria, the quality of paint produced has improved tremendously.


The increase in demand for paints is as a result of the increase in building construction in the country which has also helped the sustenance of the industry.


Paint industries in Nigeria include:

  1. Premium paints,
  2. Dulux Paints,
  3. Meyer paints, Berger paints,
  4. IPWA,
  5. Nigerian German Chemicals,
  6. African Paints
  7. CAP Plc.

I hope we have made your search complete.



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How to Pitch Your Idea to Investors in Nigeria



Are you an entrepreneur in Nigeria with a business idea that you want to pitch to investors? But you don’t have the finance to invest in the business and the only option left is to look for investors in Nigeria who would love to invest? Read this simplified guide to learn how to pitch your idea to investors in Nigeria in a professional way.

You see, Nigeria is a country with many people with money that don’t know what to do with it. A large chunk of these people will be very happy to invest their money in places that will bring them maximum profits or a good return on their investment. Having the opportunity to meet this class of people (i.e., angel investors) to share your business idea with is one problem.

Here’s what you should know…

You see, it is one thing to have a good business idea, but a completely different thing to know how to pitch it to potential investors. You need the skills of how to convince potential investors within minutes to invest in you, because if you don’t know how to do it professionally, investors won’t be able to understand what you’re trying to relate with them or how best to help you.

The importance of rehearsing your pitch is one thing I can’t stress enough in pitching potential investors in Nigeria. As an entrepreneur, you might think that you know your business in and out, and that when it comes to pitching it to investors, it will be easy just like singing the National anthem (is that even easy?). Well, this is not always the case most times. Cases abound where entrepreneurs freeze in front of investors while pitching, and ramble on and on. Many entrepreneurs don’t put the same effort they used in preparing their business plan to pitching their plan to investors. As such, you should take the time to acquire the needed skills of business idea pitching to pitch your business idea to investors in Nigeria with ease.

How to Pitch Your Idea to Investors in Nigeria

How to Pitch Your Idea to Investors in Nigeria

How to Pitch your Idea to Investors in Nigeria.

1. Start with a story, end with your solution

If you can relate your story to the problem you are solving in the market place, then do it. Nothing engages people better than a good captivating story. Start your pitch with a story that will catch your audience or investor’s attention, the complaint and address it to how your business idea will be the solution to the problem in your story.

So, don’t just keep talking about the problems all day, pitch your idea by showing potential investors how your product or service will solve the hungry market’s problem. Make it easy for the investor to understand how you plan to execute the solution with your idea.

2. Niche down to the exact market you are targeting.

Every product, service or business idea has a specific market it is made for. Don’t lie to investors saying that your product or services is for everybody on earth. It is too broad. Everybody is no market. Tell your investors the market needs your idea is meeting.

3. Analyze Your competitors

A quick analyses of your potential competitors is very important as every business has a competitor even if the competitor is located far away in another continent. Tell the investors how different your business model or approach to solving the problem is from that of your competitors and how much market share you are likely to take if your idea comes to the limelight through their support.

4. State the exact amount you need

Don’t beat around the bush about the exact amount of money you need to fund this idea. Tell investors the exact amount of money that will be required to fund the business idea to success, as well as how much have been invested (if any). Also, give a detailed breakdown of why you need the exact amount you have stated and the intended outcome of the money too. You can do this using slides, charts, tables, diagrams, etc.

These are few tips to know on how you can pitch a business idea to investors in Nigeria. I hope with this  information, you have gained clarity on how you can pitch your idea to investors in Nigeria. Go ahead and put it into practice.

If you have any questions on this topic or a related on, let me know in the comments box below.



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5 Ways to Spot Exceptional Employees in Nigeria



The Nigerian labor market is very flexible with a skilled, low labor cost, highly motivated, and productive workforce. High level of education and efficiency are common factors for spotting exceptional employees. Besides, exceptional employees are easily self-motivated and self-managed.

Another important factor used for distinguishing an exceptional employee is the personality of the employee. This informs why some people are more successful at work than others? Travis Bradberry of Forbes magazine stated that following a research done around 2016, it was concluded that the key to exceptional performance is in the personality of the employee. Bradbery (2016) stated that the results indicate that “78% of leaders consider that personality distinguishes great employees, much more than cultural adjustment with 53% and even the skills of an employee (39%)”.

However, the qualities that the leaders pointed out as part of the personality are those of emotional intelligence. Unlike personality (which never changes), emotional intelligence can be transformed and improved. So executives don’t need to look for employees who have these skills. His duty, and also that of the company, is to help the entire team to enhance their emotional intelligence to become exceptional.

In essence, a typical team does all of its planning to achieve goals, with minimal intervention from management. Exceptional employees are also known to be healthily self-critical, with a willingness to learn and a commitment to making improvements both in production and performance.

It is clear, therefore, that the key indicators of exceptional employee are high level of education, efficiency at work, self-motivation, self-management, great personality, and emotional intelligence.

However, how can we see these playing out to determine how exceptional an employee? How does one spot the level of education, efficiency at work, self-motivation, self-management, great personality, or emotional intelligence of an employee? It is by observing if the employee has the following characteristics before and after employment.

Exceptional Employees in Nigeria

Spotting Exceptional Employees in Nigeria

5 Ways To Spot An Exceptional Employee.

 Exceptional employees may be spotted using the 5 indicators below:

(1) The Employee Is Willing To Delay Gratification.

Exceptional employees work outside the range of job descriptions. Rather than expect recognition or compensation to come first, they move forward in their work, confident that they will be rewarded later, but they don’t worry if they aren’t.

(2) Exceptional Employees Tolerate Conflict.

While exceptional employees don’t seek conflict, they don’t run from it either. They can maintain their composure while presenting their positions calmly and logically.

(3) Exceptional Employees Are Focused.

Exceptional employees are not distracted by grumpy customers or disputes in the office. Rather, they know how to detect the important issues and that is why they stay focused on what matters.

(4) An Exceptional Employee Is Judiciously Brave but Courteous

An exceptional employee is willing to speak up, ask a difficult embarrassing question, or challenge an executive decision. Besides, an exceptional employee chooses the best time to do act and thinks before speaking.

(5) Exceptional Employees Control Their Ego

While the ego is part of an exceptional employee’s drive to constantly improve, they never overdo it. An exceptional employee admits when he/she is wrong and agrees to do things differently with or without correction.

Becoming an exceptional employee is a skill, an art that can be learned and practiced to efficiency. One of the ways to become an exceptional employee is to establishing open and trustworthy lines of communication with the management and co-workers.

Besides, the Human Resources (HR) department has a role to play in the building of an average employee into an exceptional employee. Rather than dismiss below average or average employees, the Human Resources (HR) team can deploy technology to improve their integration with the entity’s values. In this sense, e-learning, for example, can have great value in developing courses that convey to that person what it means to work in that company and what it contributes to society.

Another mechanism that may be used to is improve an employee’s performance is proper mentoring, that is, involving some of the people with the best reputation and knowledge within the organization to protect and accompany the toxic worker, giving them advice and offering advice whenever they need it. In this way, individual attitudes can change, although care should be taken so that it does not in any way cloud the relationship between the company and the staff.



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