Mylene Flicka is from Benin Republic. She is the founder of Irawo, which helps underserved talents transform their creativity into profitable businesses.

Explain your job to a five-year-old

I help talented people become successful, by creating a network that gives them opportunities to grow and earn money doing what they love.

What’s something you wish you knew earlier in your career/life?

I wish I knew how money works. I think it’s the most important skill in our world. You need to develop the ability to fend for yourself, no matter the circumstances.

Too many creative young people cling to one way to make money, but there is so much more. The good news is that the internet is creating new ways of making a living and forging new paths.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received in your career?

Put your doubts into action.

What (singular) achievement are you most proud of?

Creating Irawo, a community that empowers thousands of young Africans to earn a living doing what they love.

I’m proud to see how this idea I had at 18 became a movement that reached millions of people, without any funding.

Tell us about something you love doing that you’re terrible at

I’m terrible at drawing but I’m confident like Picasso when doing so. Who knows, maybe there is something there 😀

What’s a trend in francophone Africa that we should be paying attention to?

The passion economy. Many tools are emerging to help young Africans monetise their unique skills online, without commodification. This is a major trend that will contribute to closing the unemployment gap.

Daniel Adeyemi Senior Reporter

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