Meet the Boss: Bola Onadele, CEO, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange


Bola Onadele, CEO, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange

The Financial Markets Dealers Quotations (FMDQ) OTC Securities Exchange is a Nigerian marketplace that trades debt securities and currency, specifically dollar against naira. FMDQ aims to foster over-the-counter financial markets in the country, and focuses on fixed income operations (such as bonds, treasury bills and money), currencies and derivatives.

1. What was your first job?

I was an audit clerk, and that would be in 1987. Wow, that’s almost thirty years.

2. What parts of your job keep you awake at night?

Regulatory advocacy and thinking through the future.

3. Who has had the biggest impact on your career and why?

I think it’s Citi Bank and the treasurer at the bank when I worked there. Citi Bank gave me exposure to international financial markets.

4. What is the best professional advice you’ve ever received?

To do what I’m doing now – be a financial markets architect.

5. Where’s the best place to prepare for leadership? Business school or on the job?

I think on the job. Business school is good, but at times there is a bit of a natural instinct to business leadership. I haven’t been to business school.

6. How do you relax?

Music relaxes me and I like eating with people, my colleagues for example. I don’t like eating alone. So dining relaxes me.

7. By what time in the morning do you like to be at your desk?

These days it’s not about desk it’s about laptop. I grab my phone first thing and I’ve started working. So I get to my desk at about nine o’clock, but I start working much earlier than that.

8. Your favourite job interview question?

I really ask people most about what they want to achieve in their future.

9. What is your message to Africa’s aspiring business leaders and entrepreneurs?

I would say be honest about business, be very transparent and take care of your employees.