Benjamin Ndovi: Team lead, business analyst, and budding entrepreneur

Mark Talmage-Rostron
March 1, 2024 · 5 min read

Speak to Benjamin Ndovi, and you can’t help but come away feeling that you’ve been in the company of a well-spoken gentleman who really has his wits about him. And he has. As the team lead and business analyst of a company that is present across eight African countries, Benjamin is using all of his skills acquired during his Nexford MBA to help his company, One Acre Fund, conquer Africa one country at a time.

Where to do my MBA?

Benjamin is all about networking, and through social media, he always has a finger on the pulse of what is happening in the business world. So when he was on the hunt for a university where he could do his MBA, Benjamin came across a social media post from a friend who put a link to a Nexford blog on LinkedIn.

After perusing the blog and finding out that Nexford ticked all of the boxes about being affordable, US-accredited, and flexible so that he could learn while earning, Benjamin was keen to learn more. In the blink of an eye, he started clicking around the Nexford website, where he was able to discover why he should entrust his business future to this American online university. Luckily, to put his mind at ease, he had a Nexford advisor to hold his hand during the initial stages of his degree.

Having said that, it would be surprising to know that Nexford was not Benjamin’s first choice, as he was invited to apply to four other international universities. However, none of them offered the program he was after. He wanted an MBA that had a specialization in technology that would provide him with the skills that he could put to immediate use in his demanding job.

Of his exacting requirements, Benjamin said, “So when I looked at, you know, the specialization in AI or cybersecurity at Nexford, I was like, yes, this is what I was actually looking for. It was not just an ordinary MBA, but something that I could specialize in that I was already doing in my job.

Time waits for no man

One of the challenges that all Nexford learners have, and thanks to all of the support that they get during their studies, is probably one of the only challenges they are liable to encounter: is finding the time to fit their learning into their busy schedules.

With regards to juggling his busy work life and what hours of the day are left for learning, Benjamin certainly has it all worked out. Although, as he tells us, being in tech is one of the craziest and most demanding jobs around. You have to commit over 8 hours a day to developing and managing systems, then managing teams using the new systems. Plus, having a tech job means that sometimes it follows you home.

He expanded on his busy schedule by stating, “In my day, I have to juggle between my work life and my home life as a parent and a married man. I need to find time to dedicate to my wife and kids, but not neglect my work and learning commitments. It’s not easy, but Nexford’s flexible way of learning, where you can find your own time to study and complete assignments, has made those challenges seem so much easier to overcome. I can learn during my down time at work or even while traveling on a plane.”

Moving up in the world thanks to his Nexford MBA

What Benjamin also likes, besides the flexibility of how he can learn for his MBA, is that he is able to acquire the skills that can help to progress his career, even before he has completed it. And progress in his career he most certainly has.

“My Nexford MBA has certainly opened doors for me,” Benjamin says. “I started my career with One Acre Fund as a product manager, and this was mostly managing the projects themselves. But now, having studied with Nexford, I have cultivated the mindset of being a leader that can not only manage the project, but also the finances required to drive it. I am now an engineering manager because I can showcase my MBA skills on the job, which has really impressed management at the company. In just two years, I moved from product manager to business analyst, then senior business analyst, and now engineering manager. I can put a lot of that career progression down to hard work, determination, and dedication, but also my Nexford MBA.”

Modern family

It is true what they say: family really does matter. And Benjamin knows all about family, as he comes from a family of seven kids, himself being the youngest. Competition amongst the siblings was rife, and even from an early age, Benjamin realized that if you want to get ahead in life, you have to be a graduate to get a decent and well-paying job.

Benjamin was definitely working towards that in college when he met an incredible woman who, not that long after, became the mother to his first child. Time to reassess his master plan of finishing his degree and then building a career.

He now had to complete his bachelor’s degree and find a job quickly so that he could support his young family. The downside of that was that his schedule was getting busier and busier, so being able to go back to study for his masters was proving difficult, especially when the family grew to four children. That was, however, when his university opportunities were only limited to being on campus rather than being able to conveniently learn online and work toward his dream of being a successful entrepreneur.

“That was the dream,” Benjamin says. “But I soon came to the stark realization that this was never going to happen with just a bachelor's degree. I needed something behind me that could give me the skills necessary to start my own company. Doing my MBA with Nexford has really taught me a lot about entrepreneurship. In fact, right now I'm actually working with my wife to build our own company based on the records. So yeah, you can really say that Nexford has, and is continuing to open doors for me.”

When pressed to find out more about his amazing family, Benjamin was quick to tell us more. He tells us that of his four kids, one is 17 and currently in high school, and another is 10 years old and finishing fifth grade. The other two are very young, with one being just three, and the other, who is occupying a large chunk of their time, is a mere two months old.

Time for down time!

When Benjamin is done with the working day and spending time with his lovely family, he can be found pursuing one of his hobbies, which is conducting research. He tells us that he is always hungry for more information and is tackling new things outside of his comfort zone, such as software development.

That is when he wants to stimulate his brain, but when Benjamin wants to really unwind, he can be found with his nose buried in a good book or planning his next adventure, which entails exploring new and distant countries and meeting new people.

Time to scratch that entrepreneurial itch with an MSE

With Benjamin standing on the precipice of finishing his MBA, you’d think that he would be stopping for a bit to smell the roses. But that’s not him. He’s already planning his next program, and the one that is on his radar is the new Nexford Master of Science in Entrepreneurship.

In fact, Benjamin told us that he has actually reached out to his Nexford success advisor as he is keen to start the program virtually the minute after completing his MBA. He wants to use the skills he acquired from that degree to help his wife run her restaurant in Malawi.

Being an entrepreneur can also mean that, in order to expand your business, you may have to expand to different countries and partner with other people in other organizations. This is why Benjamin is very open to the idea of leaving his home country, if only for a few years.

Will Benjamin succeed in these endeavors? Of course he will, especially when you consider that he has taken inspiration from someone most dear to him, his father.

“My dad has been a massive inspiration to me because, you know, I've seen him really working so hard,” says Benjamin. “Even though we were seven kids and he had his hands full pretty much all of the time, my dad was able to venture into businesses and really thrive. Not working for others, but rather taking the risk to work for himself and build a successful business. And that continues to amaze me, still to this day.”

Seeing is believing. Check out Benjamin’s amazing MBA journey below or on YouTube.

About the author
Mark Talmage-Rostron
Mark Talmage-Rostron

Mark is a college graduate with Honours in Copywriting. He is the Content Marketing Manager at Nexford, creating engaging, thought-provoking, and action-oriented content.

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