Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Lesson 1

Hello everyone...sorry I didn't have a post yesterday, my Internet was acting up, so I couldn't do anything. But I succeeded in keeping to my diet...hmm how me its so hard.. NO FIZZY DRINK

Anyways like I promised I will like to gist you what I learnt....

I was conducting a research and I realized that a lot of small business stand the risk of folding up after 2 years of operation. Why? I realized that even though they don't realize it, they seem to have problems with debts, managements and the almighty "FUNDS".

First of all a lot of us have huge business plans which state that we have to have 5 million naira in other to start a business.

Now I ask myself: "who is going to give you a loan of #250,000 for a start when you haven't proven that you can turn water into wine?
How do you think you will get a loan of 5 million naira? And so we sit there not doing anything just waiting for the funds which will never come.

There are a lot of things to do to avoid making mistakes or borrowing huge sums of money that one may spend the rest of one's life paying...

1. Before you start a business note this: " it's very difficult to get a loan. Even if you can, it is not advisable to rush quickly to take a loan. Look around you: "what is it you can do that can generate the money you need for the business? It has to be a skill or what you have in your head or a service you can offer. I believe everybody can do the extraordinary when they are forced to. For example if you will like to own a restaurant, and you don't have money to start, you can start by cooking in your house and just inviting friends over. I know at least you can sacrifice a few cups of rice for a tasting party. Trust me word of mouth is one of the strongest form of marketing and it can get your name out there. If your food is lovely nobody will forget, as I have learnt people like good food. I know someone who had a tasting party for her sandwiches and that's how her sandwich business kicked off. Within months she was making sales of #50,000 i.e. about $300 daily. As it occurred to you that teachers who want to be owners of schools, start out first by organizing after school lessons. This they do for years before they finally open their school. OR photographers who freelance for a long time till they are able to open their propre studio......

2. As much as possible run away from overheads, this is something you don't need when starting a business. In Nigeria were the electricity isn't that great, you have to supplement with generator, meaning fuel or diesel, meaning extra expenses. The notion that you must rent an office, or have a shop is wrong. At first you can start from anywhere, preferably your house. With the advent of social media, it's easy for one to be in one's house and conduct one's business. You can always meet your clients in their office. That a lot easier for them, as it removes the hassle of locating your office. (note for this make sure you have a credible online presence).

3. As an entrepreneur you must have a focus...only you know what your focus is. When you stay on that you will see that little by little you will get to your goal.

4. Never start a business that you are not passionate about. For instance I, Tamunoibifiri Mobolaji-Kamson decides that I want to go into catering...HOW? Why? Because I can see that all over the world food brings in the money. Now I am very sure that I will fold up in less than 2 years. For I do not have any passion in cooking whatsoever. The comedian "Basketmouth" said he started as a stand up comedian in 1995, but didn't get his first big break until 2001. He said if you do not have the passion don't do it".

I will stop here and I hope you had fun. If there is any other thing you will like to add to this list please feel free to do so. If there is anything that doesn't go well with you, just let me know. I am open to your comments and your questions.

For the record I am through with Myne Whitman's book " A LOVE REKINDLED" and I must say I loved it".

Do take care of yourself and see you tomorrow..