BusinessDay

Debbie Onome Akwara – CEO at Niche Customer Experience Group

Debbie Onome Akwara is a leading customer experience (CX) consulting practitioner, educator and entrepreneur (CX-Preneur) in Africa. She is the Chief Executive Officer at Niche Customer Experience Group; a leading boutique and integrated customer experience management solution and training provider in Africa.

Prior to Niche Customer Experience Group, Debbie led customer experience success in the financial services, telecommunications & education sectors working at Zenith Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, Etisalat (now 9mobile) and Bridge International Academies.

The customer experience successes she recorded in her career prior to Niche Customer Experience Group were an increase in product adoption by 2567%, an increase in the banking industry customer service ranking by 18.7% and an increase in revenue generation from customer experience management activities of up to N300 million.

As an advocate for customer experience education in Africa, Debbie (via Niche Institute of Customer Experience & Innovation) launched Africa’s 1st and globally recognised customer experience certification courses in partnership with the Institute of Customer Management, United Kingdom. The courses are a trio of customer experience certifications designed for business managers (Certified Customer Experience Manager – CCEM), business leaders (Certified Customer Experience Professional – CCEP) and customer service and/or customer experience consultants (Certified Customer Experience Practitioner – CCEPR).

Through the Niche Customer Experience Group, Debbie has launched the Customer Experience Africa Summit, the Customer Experience Africa Awards and the continent’s first multi-sector customer experience report i.e. the State of Customer Africa research with the second issue publishing in July 2022.

Read also: Olajumoke Aleoke-Malachi, Lead, People and Culture

She is on a mission to grow businesses one customer experience at a time using Africa-inspired frameworks and structures, while building the customer experience management capabilities of professionals on the continent.

In 2021 and 2022, she was recognised as a top 50 global customer experience thought leader and influencer, a global woman in customer experience to follow and a top 25 thought leader and influencer in Africa.

Besides her work at Niche, Onome is also involved in humanitarian activities through her non-for-profit organisation (NGO); HEELP – Help Educate & Elevate the Less Privileged. At HEELP, she works with corporate organisations and high-net worth individuals to give back to society through designing and implementing a shared-value and sustainable corporate social responsibility (CSR) model to drive the socio-economic development of low-income communities. The clients she has served in this regard include IMC Plantations located in Nsukwa, Delta State.

Onome is a mother, an author of two books, a sought-after international customer experience podcast and conference speaker, as well as a humanitarian that is passionate about Africa and Africans, a pan-Africanism approach to business growth through customer experience management. She is always looking for new and innovative ways to learn, connect and leave things better than she met them.

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