Meet Adrian Ciesielski!

Ad Dynamo’s Sales Manager for Twitter for Greater Africa. He is an experienced digital strategist and a big believer in strategic online processes, and he is on a mission to bring digital to Africa. The OCFO team sat down for an open interview with him, to ask about his experience as a businessman and young leader.

During a difficult time in high school, Adrian involved himself in a range of activities including everything from sport to theatre to chess. He gained direction from various self-help books such as Dale Carniege’s ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People.’ He also became somewhat of a salesman, organising and marketing major events at his school. On the side, he also ran a start-up with a partner, developing and selling different kinds of apps.

After completing his MBA at Grahamstown university, he worked as a business developer for Zomato, doing digital sales. Currently, he is Twitter’s Sales Manager for Greater Africa. He reviews each account every day and develops proactive strategies to help each account grow, establishes new business, and leads dynamic teams.

Staying Motivated

In order to maintain his busy schedule, Adrian sticks to a strict daily regime which involves waking up at 5.30am, meditating, reading, and a lot of exercise. We asked him if he was always so motivated. “Being motivated was created. You need pressure to have drive. If you get comfortable, you’ll be average.” When asked what drives him? An abhorrence to being average, and his “aggressive need to be number one

This kind of drive has gotten him to be where he is today. He has achieved a lot and gained a pool of knowledge and experience as a young leader in a short amount of time. With this, not all reactions have been positive. In today’s society, we are all about praising young leaders and entrepreneurs. However, when it comes down to your manager being half your age, people don’t always have the best reaction.  He says that having an MBA at such a young age can be intimidating as it has a certain aura, and comes with a slight ego. For him, managing this ego is very important.

Balancing “young” and “mature” minds in the work place

In the digital age, constant adjustment, quick thinking, and a certain agility are necessary skills to have in the working world. In the older generations, some lack this dexterity, and the workplace doesn’t have the time to wait. This being said, there needs to be a balance of both younger and more mature minds within the workplace. More mature minds can bring high value. Firstly, experience is inimitable. “You can have great skills and a high IQ, but you can never replace experience. You need that balance.” Secondly, many companies are hiring with the emotional intelligence of the prospective employee in mind. EQ is based on the ability to let go of being rational and process driven. This is something that comes with time, and it is hard to have it continuously.

Final Takeaway 

Adrian left us with a nice piece of advice: “All high performers have low days. They also have polar opposites. You always need down time.” How he deals with low days? Gym.

Interviewer: Jason Luboyera Head of Sales & Marketing at Outsourced CFO