Dupe Olusola, the MD/CEO of Transcorp Hotels PLC, one of Africa’s leading hospitality companies, outlines what it means to her to be successful. She considers everyone’s definition of success to be exclusive because it depends on their experiences and the outcomes they seek.
“It is about giving back to the people – individuals and community around me,” – she says, defining what it means to her. The leading woman believes that success does not only depict what has been achieved. It also shows how well one performs the role they introduced themselves for.
She delves further into the point, demonstrating that it is also about empowering others to develop their full potential. Satisfaction comes from knowing one has done all one can and wanting nothing more than to continue growing as a person and accomplishing their goals. The focus is on durability and longevity. There is no such thing as success in a vacuum. Spiritual, social, emotional, mental, physical, and financial well-being are all components of this ideal. Individually and collectively, success is defined by going above and beyond expectations. For her, success is about bringing good fortune to those around her and aiding their development.
Dupe Olusola comprehends that to thrive in the hospitality industry, it is essential for market participants to have a strong desire to help others and provide them with the finest service possible. This new point of view on the ace has been one of the significant turning points that propelled Transcorp Hotels Plc to new heights.
“There is always a new challenge; you can’t run out of things to motivate you.”
Tracing the roots
Family is the cradle of geniuses. That’s where the journey begins. Olusola admires the way her family supported and taught her to speak up. Her confidence and courage came following the upbringing she received. Transcorp Hotel’s name and fame, as she believes, is a result of the process she has undergone as a daughter and professional. She remembers how fortunate she had been to work with people who mentored her the best way and followed her with all faith. The path to success is always tricky, but the people surrounding you make things easier and more convenient. That’s how we all begin, be it a small venture one run or a big business house one operates.
The key factors that pave the path towards success are the urge to do better with every customer they serve, the willingness to push themselves to their limits and beyond, and the attempt to maintain a balance between being a business and a service provider, i.e., making an impact. And this is precisely what Transcorp Hotels has done so far and will continue to do in the future.
Transcorp Hotels PLC services and its growth strategies
Listed on the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX), Transcorp Hotels Plc is Africa’s most prominent hotel chain. They have the award-winning Transcorp Hilton Abuja and the Transcorp Hotels Calabar in southern Nigeria. They also run Aura by Transcorp Hotels, an online booking portal that began in 2021 and is experiencing significant growth. Dupe describes this as part of the company’s “asset-light” strategy. Aura by Transcorp Hotels is a convenient online booking platform that allows users to book a hotel room, an apartment, or even an experience from anywhere. Transcorp Hotels PLC now manages over 5,000 rooms in hotels and flats across Nigeria. With the help of cutting-edge technology, Aura by Transcorp Hotels is rapidly expanding.
Moreover, Transcorp Hotels PLC collaborates with a wide range of interested parties and rolls out novel services to maintain rising demand despite the company’s rapid growth. The Transcorp Hilton Abuja will have a state-of-the-art convention center by 2023, and a spa just opened at the hotel, with first-rate amenities. The company is also building a new five-star hotel in the center of Lagos. As Dupe puts it, “There is truly so much more, and we’re excited about this.”
The core values of Transcorp Hotels PLC
The company’s core values, as described by Dupe Olusola, are based on these three Es “Excellence, Execution, and Enterprise.” Excellence is the highest possible efficiency level in producing tangible outcomes. Achieving the maximum efficiency level (or perfection) is only possible with integrity.
Innovation is the by-product of business, and the only way to execute with perfection is to uphold a standard of honesty that inspires trust in every stakeholder and keeps them focused on the common goal. Dupe asserts that the company’s core values have allowed Transcorp Hotels Plc to cultivate a reputation for honesty and creativity.
One of the ideologies it swears by is to ensure a culture of integrity and innovation. To influence her team, it’s a must for her to model these behaviours. At Transcorp Hotels Plc and throughout the Transcorp Group, these fundamental principles serve as the warp by which their daily actions, standards of practice, team onboarding, and induction are woven.
Transcorp Hotels PLC strategies to stay afloat
Dupe Olusola indicates that Transcorp Hotels PLC has established procedures to keep up with the intense competition in the hospitality industry. Their exceptional performance, which is typically above the industry norm, reflects their relentless pursuit of excellence. Dupe thinks this success is due to the novel approaches they’ve taken to increase sales, open new markets, and keep the consistently high quality they’re recognized intact. She reflects on the unprecedented time in 2020, during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. As social isolation was essential in limiting the spread of the virus, many lodging establishments were forced to close their doors.
Drive-in theatres, like the one created by the company at Transcorp Hilton Abuja, let guests enjoy the outdoors in a risk-free environment. At the same time that the globe was trying to cope with the effects of the epidemic, they launched a new initiative called Clean Stay, which aimed to reassure guests about the cleanliness of their accommodations. As the pandemic caused a decline in government and business travel to the hotel, it demonstrated to the world that in addition to being a historically acclaimed business hotel, it was also a fantastic place to visit for vacation.
Transcorp Hotels PLC, as described by Dupe Olusola, recovered more quickly than other brands in their business thanks to the introduction of leisure activities that assured the otherwise excluded or non-existent leisure market became their cash cow. Their devotion to incremental innovation has always given them a leg up on the competition, and it is this innovation that will allow them to maintain their dominant market position. They routinely show better results than the market average across the board.
Transcorp Hotels PLC’s top line climbed 55% yearly, according to Dupe’s analysis of the company’s recently released financial data for the first nine months of 2022. As of September 2022, the company’s revenue and PBT had already surpassed FY 2021 by $2.4 and $4.5 million, respectively. They maintained a 46% profit in operations despite cost inflation. She says, “All of these were made possible by the relentless effort of our team in innovatively driving business from all of our operating segments while simultaneously managing and optimizing our costs.”
Transcorp Hotels PLC can keep up with the constantly evolving hospitality industry thanks to the diligent efforts of its team and network of industry watchers.
Best recognition received by Transcorp Hotels PLC
Dupe Olusola, the brand’s MD/CEO, talks about the company’s most outstanding achievements by noting the numerous honours it has received. It has won the prestigious 2022 Seven Stars Luxury Award, which is significant for them and the hotel industry. Moreover, Transcorp Hotels PLC has been recognized by the World Travel Awards for its flagship property, Transcorp Hilton Abuja, including Africa’s Leading Business Hotel, Nigeria’s Leading Hotel, Nigeria’s Leading Business Hotel, Nigeria’s Leading City Hotel and Nigeria’s Leading Hotel Suite (the Presidential Suite).
Transcorp Hilton Abuja and Zuma Restaurant (at Transcorp Hilton Abuja) also won the World Luxury Hotel Awards for hotel and restaurant, respectively.
At the “Nigeria at 60” Awards ceremony in 2021, Transcorp Hotels PLC was named the country’s Most Outstanding Hotel and Hospitality Company. The group also took home the 2022 Sectoral Leadership Award for Services by Pearl Awards, which recognizes top companies listed on the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX).
According to Dupe, the company is also honoured to receive the 2022 Travellers’ Choice Award from Trip Advisor and the Travellers’ Review Award from Booking.com. The 2022 Nigerian Tourism Awards recognized Aura by Transcorp Hotels with the Special Recognition Award for Tourism Innovation.
According to Dupe, the hotel chain’s and its individual brands’ accolades add to a lengthy list. But, as Dupe points out, beyond the awards and recognition, they are content in their work because they are fulfilling their vision of redefining the African hospitality industry by focusing on the needs of their guests, staff, and other stakeholders.
As the MD/CEO of Transcorp Hotels PLC
Dupe Olusola serves as the Managing Director/CEO of Transcorp Hotels PLC. She is accountable for setting the company’s strategic direction- developing its strategies, providing strategic counsel to various organizational and functional leaders, and assisting the company in meeting its goals.
She leaves no stone unturned to keep the morale up of her co-workers and team. Transcorp Hotels, under her leadership, has developed a company-wide ethos of striving for and achieving excellence in all they do. She explains that they’re all striving for the same thing. And the drive to accomplish the goals they have set for themselves is what keeps everyone going.
Dupe Olusola indicates that her co-workers are self-motivated individuals. Nonetheless, her team ensures that their working conditions and opportunities for advancement are met. In her words, “there is always a new challenge; you can’t run out of things to motivate you.”
Transcorp Hotels PLC’s Long-Term Vision
Transcorp Hotels Plc is a frontrunner in the African hospitality industry, and its beliefs are firmly based on Africapitalism. CEO Dupe Olusola has dreams of expanding the business across Africa and beyond. The group aspires to transform people and the continent to build the Africa of their dreams. According to Dupe, they are revolutionizing African hospitality through Transcorp Hotels.
On being a catalyst of change for next-gen leaders
Dupe Olusola says it is essential to keep people motivated and reminded of the importance of living life to the fullest and the need for discipline, hard work, maintaining a positive attitude, and dedication to success. To her, “no” is not an option, and she wants the younger generation to know that anything is possible. As a catalytic agent she shares, how she would like to achieve it:
“By holding myself to the highest standards possible. Showing people, the importance of being authentic and, indeed, being true to self.”
Dupe also stresses the significance of resilience. To teach them that there is no easy way to the top and that the finest leaders develop consistency and dedication in their approach to work. She is hopeful that they will all remember that it is more important to focus on the job than on the praise and that they should embrace emotional intelligence to connect with and get the most out of the people they lead.
She agrees that the most incredible way to teach future generations is to push them outside their comfort zones. Creating opportunities for them to succeed is necessary for influencing change. Hence, Dupe’s effort to contribute effectively and pave the way for the future generation to excel.
Dupe strongly believes in using every available real-life teachable moment and the power of stories to teach life lessons. She is dedicated to developing future leaders who will surpass their current accomplishments by orders of magnitude.
Work-life integration, rather than work-life balance, is what Dupe Olusola strives towards. She thinks it’s impossible to strike a healthy balance between everything because something will always take precedence over the others depending on how you set your priorities.
Executive, wife, and mother Dupe Olusola makes the most of her time by setting priorities and efficiently using her resources. She considers that her family and team are responsible for helping her prioritize and balance her job and personal life. She concludes,
“It is no easy feat. However, you can do it with the right mindset and willingness to succeed.”
Message to aspirant business leaders
This message from Dupe Olusola provides some helpful insight on how to successfully deploy your leadership strategy, whether you’re managing a large team on a demanding project or merely trying to climb the corporate ladder. She encourages them to keep trying even when told “no”. One must always strive to do better and achieve more. She advises them not to let the possibility of failure stop them from seizing opportunities when they present themselves. Feel the fear and do it nonetheless; acting is better than doing nothing.