Group Chief Executive Officer of Databank Group and accomplished banker, Kojo Addae-Mensah has featured on the Y Leaderboard Series to share his life story and encourage listeners of YFM, predominantly the youth.
The conversation with Y107.9FM’s Rev.Erskine which lasted for close to two hours touched on his upbringing, schooling, career, family and all he is enthusiastic about. Surprisingly, the Databank CEO made known that he was not the typical focused student in the latter part of his high school days. However, when he barely passed into the university, it was then that his aspirations were being moulded.
“When I finished my first degree, because I grew up in the home of academicians, there was no conversation on working after school before coming back to school. You had to complete your masters before thinking of anything else. So when I finished Economics I knew that I had to do a masters so I applied for both Economics and Finance.
I got admitted to both in Legon but I decided to try something else and I moved into Finance. By the time I was finishing Finance my aspiration was quite molded. I knew I wanted to do investment banking because I really enjoyed the lessons I was taking in the Finance class. So my aspiration was formed when I was doing my masters but before then I was just going through the motions.”
As a father, Kojo Addae-Mensah noted that he wishes for his son, though born in Botswana to learn all he can about Ghana. As a popular face in the Ghanaian media space, the proud father also disclosed he will be happy and support his son all the way if he chooses to venture into the media field.
In his submission on career, Kojo Addae-Mensah advised the youth to sometimes be daring when it comes to finding a job. He shared that one does not only have to rely on connections before getting a job.
He narrated his experience of how he landed a managerial job at GCB without connections when he said: “I was sitting at Barclays one morning reading a newspaper when a friend called that there is a graphic advert I had to look at.
It was a KPMG role and when I looked at the requirements, I was saying to myself ‘this is me’. I was called for the interview and it was not KPMG. It turned out that it was a CEO role for GCB. I went in with big shots for the interview; big shots who could intimidate every Tom, Dick and Harry.
The youth think to get into places like that you will need connection. They always think you need a connection or a father figure to hold your hands but that I vehemently disagree. You don’t need a connection. You might say all the places I have worked at were international institutions but this was GCB. Nobody held my hand to GCB but I went through the interview and I went in to do my best.”
Kojo Addae-Mensah encouraged the youths to be confident in their ability and challenge themselves by reaching out for jobs that may seem beyond their reach.
Programmes Manager of YFM Accra, Eddy Blay speaking on the interview said: “it is always a delight to have such personalities on the show. Through their eyes, the youth are able to see and experience the reality of corporate Ghana and dispel all myths. Kojo Addae Mensah taking time and efforts from the strenuous work in the investment banking sector at this critical time of COVID-19 to speak to the youth is highly commendable.”