Lessons from the First Edition of the Nigeria Public Relations Week

This post is waay overdue…I know. But better late than never right?

Towards the end of 2023, I received an invitation to join the Committee that would be responsible for planning and coordinating the 2024 AGM for the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR). So many thoughts went through my mind when this call came through but the major concern I had was about the amount of work that would be required to pull it off, given all that I already had on my plate.

I accepted the invitation and work began almost immediately. Every Sunday, members of the Committee led by the Chairman, Mr Yomi Badejo-Okusanya, met to discuss the details of the event and set the ball rolling. A result of one of our many meetings was to expand the scope of the AGM and make it a truly immersive learning and networking event for Public Relations professionals in Nigeria and our key stakehlders. This led to the birth of the Nigeria Public Relations Week (NPRW), the first national Public Relations conference in the country.

As you can expect when you want to pioneer something new or carve a path away from the status quo, there were several hurdles to overcome. After sleepless nights and a lot of long conversations, we put together the structure for the NPRW, created a compelling value proposition and designed a strong brand identity which helped us to actively promote the event from the beginning of the year.

I won’t bore you with all the gruelling details of the different moving parts involved in putting together the NPRW or the gigantic obstacles we had to overcome. I’d like to, however, share a few highlights and lessons that I have taken away from the experience.


My Top Five Highlights 

Working collaboratively with a diverse team. The entire planning process was stretching but working with the Committee members who were forward-thinking and just as passionate about the NPRW made it a worthwhile experience.


Curating the pre-Conference virtual sessions. I loved how impactful the virtual sessions turned out to be. We had a good line up of speakers who delivered great value.


Engaging with students from Universities in Ogun state. In every city or country that I go to, I always love to engage with the students there. So it’s no surprise that the engagement activity with the university students in Ogun state was one of the top highlights for me.


Putting together the mentorship session for young professionals. Again, this won’t come as a surprise as this is what we do best at The Comms Avenue. The mentorship session was a key highlight for me because our speakers were very open and real with the career guidance they provided to the young PR professionals. That made me really happy!


Visiting Olumo Rock. Although I got to do this after the delegates had their scheduled tour visit, I am glad that I finally got the opportunity to visit the famous Olumo Rock. It was definitely a memorable experience for me.


My Top Three Lessons 

As I have mentioned before, planning and executing the NPRW was quite challenging, perhaps one of the most challenging things I have done this year. These are my top five lessons from the experience:

If you want change, you have to step out. I’ve been part of several conversations where opinions are expressed about how things are not working and how something needs to change. Most times, I leave these conversations wondering how this change will be made and who will make these changes. Since I don’t believe in making complaints without in some way contributing to the solution, being part of the planning committee for the NPRW was my own little way of doing something for the benefit of the Institute.

Of course, there were a lot of things we could have done better with the NPRW, but it’s good to see how the vision we had has shifted expectations about what the AGM should look like. I wonder how much more we’d achieve in moving the Institute closer to where we’d like it to be if we commit in one little way or the other to do something for the benefit of the Institute.


Doing something innovative does not mean there won’t be challenges. While I knew our plans would bring some much needed innovation and disruption, I was not oblivious to the fact that there would be challenges during the implementation phase. Maybe I actually underestimated just how much energy would be required to overcome these challenges because it really stretched me.

However, as they presented themselves, the challenges provided a learning opportunity for me as well as for the entire Committee. I think my key learning point here is not to be discouraged by the challenges. And trust me, I had many moments where I felt discouraged but thankfully, I was able to push through until the end.


Stay committed to the process and the work that excellence requires. While I already know that delivering excellent work requires commitment and going the extra mile, this was even more evident during the planning and the execution of the NPRW.

It was interesting to see the difference between stakeholders who were committed to excellence and those who weren’t. This was yet another reminder for me to stay committed to the process that excellence requires in every area of my life. There’s a lot more we’d be able to do as professionals if we remain committed to excellence in our work and in our results.

There are more lessons but I will stop here. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been part of the first Nigeria Public Relations Week and I pray that future editions of the NPRW will be even better!









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