Meet the Entrepreneur


Mary Adefisayo gracefully covers our first edition on ‘Meet the Entrepreneur’.
She is the CEO AMI Designs, a fast rising design communication company that aims to provide breath taking designs for Adverts, billboards, magazines and so on. Their designs are so captivating; they convey the client’s message in the most unique way to the customers.
Here’s a sneak peek into her world, enjoy…

1. Can we meet you?

I’m Mary Adefisayo, a Graphic designer cum painting artist. A Fine and Applied Arts graduate from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. I am a design communicator that loves colour and music. I describe myself as a thought provoking trendsetter in the making that is relentlessly eager to learn.

2. What’s your business line?

Basically I am into Design communication. Design communicates thoughts, ideas and should inspire conversation. That’s what I enjoy doing.

3. How did you get the idea or concept about your business?

Well… I should probably say the idea got me. Lol..……. My dad nudged me towards this. He noticed my appreciation for art and hooked me up with a creative heart. I started learning design before I got admission into the University, from a big brother, Mr Ayobami Oke. As a student, pay or no pay; I just kept designing as more opportunities came in. Design jobs kept coming after school and the prevailing thought was to strive to make them better. So, here we are.

4. When did you start your business and how long have you been in operation?

Well. I started as an undergraduate, 2013 precisely. AMI was a name to brand designs. Now, a “restructuring” design communication outfit.

5. What are the challenges you often encounter running your business and how have you been able to overcome them?

There are a couple of challenges and we keep working at getting better.
Being able to meet up with time is a big deal, a very big one. Clients trust that they should get their designs when they need them. We endeavour to meet up with clients’ timeline as much as possible. Learning to project ahead without sentiments and see the end from the beginning helps us achieve this. So a client tells you exactly what (s)he wants. Design delivered but rejected.
This got us yearning to understand the clients need. Sometimes beyond wants. By asking questions, paying attention to even the briefly spoken words. Reading between the lines. Just so they get value for their money.

Money returns not being proportional to work delivered.. Business minded people and entrepreneurs have had to face this issue at one point or the other. Sometimes, the clients pay lower than the project requires. They probably “can’t” afford more or they are not convinced about how much the design means to them. And then we (designers) think, this can be done in a short while, so, no problem.
That’s us placing low value on our work. Wrong. The way out is to consider the client and the project will add to the client. And the fact that you have enough experience to deliver the job. That is important in earning more rewards for a job.

Lastly, saying yes to every job is a major challenge. One cannot possibly accept every design job. Else, that means you will always have more than can be delivered. There’s the need to prune some jobs off either because the returns can never meet up with the work done, or one can’t turn it in when it’s needed or for any other reason.

6. What keeps you going despite the challenges?

Of course, God’s grace. And yep, looking on the bright side. Challenges, if properly viewed should bring out the best of me. So, the challenges remind me that we are humans and can get better always.

7. What would you say are top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur in your field?

The ability to deliver value (since that is what your clients need), being timely in delivery of jobs and a yearning to learn new things.

8. Who are the people you look up to in your field?

Hamm, Great organizations like FourthCanvas, where I currently work, their work culture is amazing and inspires growth incredibly. I practically learn everyday here!

Landor, an old and legendary design agency, their spread to different countries, and work process are thrilling and challenging.

Cregital, Da Design Studio amongst others, their commitment to delivering value creatively is inspiring.

And a lot of great designers and other organizations that is closely followed and is totally inspiring!

9. What’s the most inspiring thing you will tell someone who wants to venture into your field of business?

The world is fast paced. You should know this already, so please meet us where we are (lol) . Be apt to learn how to add more value to people.

Understanding the uniqueness of each client or design job might be quite challenging. In a fast paced world, we often are tempted to succumb and jump into a job instead of being, inquisitive, innovative. Strive to take each client as different and unique.

Recognizing how valuable our work is to a user is important so, pay attention to every detail of the work. Create functional and aesthetically pleasing works, as much as you can.

You never walk alone. Never succumb to the thought of being isolated; else, you would have been the only designer in the world. Lol. Learn to be open and in company of designers, there’s always a lot to learn.

10. Where do you see yourself and your business in 5years from now?

Well… Fast forward to 5 years. As a design communication outfit, AMI will be one of the names you heard about on Ad campaigns that are internationally recognized. It won’t be news that we go way over the top to fix design communication issues in and outside Nigeria. Or maybe with name changed.

Thank You for Inspiring us AMI

NB: For enquiries on your next designs,kindly contact AMI on 08168585785, 07062031521,
or send a mail

About the author

Joyce Olawunmi


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