Chika Uwazie is everything I aspire to be when I grow up and become a real girl. She’s the CEO of TalentBase Nigeria, a HR software for growing
enterprises. She is an advocate for women in technology and SME
development. And she’s really, really pretty.
Chika obtained her Masters in Strategic Human Capital Management at
Georgetown University and before starting TalentBase, she worked at several international organizations including The Whitaker Group, World Bank, and Exxon Mobil.
TalentBase aims to socially impact Nigerians as many SMEs have employees that have no bank accounts. Through their partnership with Etranzact they can create mobile wallets for staff that don’t bank accounts.
We got to sit down and have a chat with Chika and it’s safe to say, we’re sort of obsessed:
You are known as a “tech-lady”, can you share why you are perceived as this, as well as introduce yourself to us?
A little bit about myself- I’ve always been an HR person. I did everything from recruiting to HR technology to planning & consulting before I joined Talent Base. What’s funny is that while that was happening, I’ve always been working in technology, which is probably where the ‘tech lady’ thing came from. TalentBase gives me the ability to merge both- I’m helping people with their HR problems using tech.
You have achieved a high level of excellence in your career, what is responsible for this feat?
I would say two things. I think being the daughter of two doctorate degree holders helped. They always held me to a very high standard. I had a huge gap to fill as part of the Uwazie family. Also, my mom used to pay for gifted and talented programs for me so I spent a lot of my Saturday’s going to these programs and they did everything to stimulate our minds. Literally everything from dissecting pigs to understanding anatomy to learning how to code. So basically I’ve always had these programs to stimulate my learning. The second thing is my friends. I’ve always been blessed with remarkable friends- women with tech companies, women running multi-million dollar hair companies, women all over the world. They inspire me and push me to do more in everything I do.
What drives you to innovate?
The people of Nigeria. As soon as you land here, you see people hustling. There’s so many gaps and issues in this country and so many people are simply trying to get past or fix those. A huge reason while TalentBase was started was just us trying to solve a problem. We’re simply helping SMEs automate their payroll.
What do you have to say about the rise of women in the world of technology?
The rise of women in technology is definitely growing everyday. I believe women are getting more support. There’s a lot of tech programs, even here that are encouraging more women. I also think that women used to think that the only way to get into tech was through coding and now there’s a lot of programs supporting women and showing them. There’s also a lot of funding going to women now. Not as much as there is for men, but more than usual.
Check back soon to catch part 2!