Superpreneurs Are The Master Key To Development
Continued from paper 9
RULE FIVE: You must think accurately and always think with an open mind
Being at the top of your game is hard work; however the most important part of the work is in your own hands. There are few things you can control in this life. And there are much more things that you can never be able to control, not now anyway. You cannot control the weather, you cannot control the seasons and you cannot even control how other people will react to you or respond to your ideas. However one thing that is totally and absolutely in your 100% control is the way you think. If you think negatively you will most likely get negative results. If you think positively you are already on the path to greatness and success. However positive thinking must be blended with accurate thinking and open-mindedness if you want to get the results that are reserved for SUPERPRENEURS.
In rule five I have tried very hard to get people who I train to understand the need to think accurately. I always hear people say things that if they made decisions based on such thinking they are condemning themselves and their business to failure. For instance a young woman made a remark recently that told me she had no idea of what accurate thinking is or meant. Hear her: “everybody is currently on Instagram, so her business gets all its referrals from Instagram”. I asked her if that is an accurate statement. She said yes it was and even went further to argue that the whole World is on Instagram and that that is where every business should be. I said well let me educate you my young lady. What you really meant to say is that all your friends and most of the people who you socialize with are all on Instagram and not everybody in the World. The World has over seven billion people and Instagram has only four hundred million users so that is hardly the whole World. In any case most of Leaders of most African Countries especially Nigeria are yet to warm up to social media and so they are not on Instagram or even Facebook or twitter.
In order to make a business decision you must be sure that your decision is based on facts. In Nigeria we tend to deal with fallacy quite a lot and people tend to try to pass off their ideas and their biases as facts. For instance there is current clamour by some misguided youths for Biafra in the eastern part of Nigeria. This is a fact, but a majority of the eastern Nigerians do not believe or follow that cause and that is also a fact.
The need to base decisions on accurate information is a bed rock of my Business Development matrix. I just love data and the data will always tell you what is happening, what is likely to happen and what has just happened. Are Nigerians religious people? The data points in this direction, there are more churches per capita in Nigeria than in many of the European countries that taught us religion. However at the same time that we are highly religious, Nigeria has the one of the highest corruption levels in the World, our crime rate is through the roof and the cases of child rape, ritual murder and other violent heinous crimes are alarming. And these are facts. So if you wanted a moral society and you based your decision on the fact that Nigeria has so many religious organizations you would be dead wrong. Our society is not a moral one. Our Leaders steal from the State without conscience and the people murder and commit violent acts of crime against each other with reckless abandon.
There are many problems with African society and especially Nigeria, however the fact that our people tend to make life and death decisions on the basis of information that cannot be considered facts must be one of the most painful aspects of our national development. I believe this has a lot to do with our backwardness and stage of our development as a nation. A very good example is the fact that in most hospitals in Nigeria when you come as a victim of armed robbery attack or a major trauma incident you are turned away by the hospital. They ask you to go and get a police report first before they can treat you. They know that for every trauma patient the first few minutes if not seconds count in the battel for saving a life, however they will not even attend to the patient. In recent times the Nigeria Police have said time without number that they have never issued such rule and that every hospital must treat trauma patients. All they need to do was to report the matter to the police after treatment so that a statement can be taken from the patient after recovery. The hospitals are not having it, they still insist on these police reports that the police themselves have never even demanded for. And in the process so many great Nigerians have lost their lives as a result of the ineptitude of these Nigerian hospitals. This is classical inaccurate thinking at play. The hospitals have never bothered to know if that demand or law as they think it is, still exists.
As an Entrepreneur you must be able to build your business in an environment that may be favourable or it may be hostile, so the need for facts and accuracy must be at the top of your agenda. Take the time to gather the facts, interview potential customers, find out what they want, why they buy from others and why they will buy from you if you were to start business. Do not assume anything. Get the facts and cross check the facts. And after you are sure of the facts cross check them again.
There is a reason why UBER, the citizen based taxi service, is so popular in the USA and Europe, the citizens of the western World just love convenience. And UBER gives them that when they need to move around. UBER will be successful in Nigeria and Africa for totally different reasons. It maybe for effects, people in Nigeria and the most of African society just love to live like the Americans. So using UBER brings them one step closer to the USA. If you doubt it, then why is getting a USA or European Visa considered as the ultimate God blessing for our people. People celebrate getting the USA visa on facebook, Instagram and other social media as if they have just won an election to be President of a country.
Personally I believe that States and Local Governments need to gather their young people together and teach them the rules of Success, Entrepreneurship and Super Achievement. We have too much disinformation out there. And young people are getting distracted, with the get rich quick schemes. I tell my students that there is only one way you can get to top of the mountain. You have to climb there yourself. And if someone climbs the mountain, carrying you on their back then it means that you are lucky, you have condemned someone to the pain and strain of climbing a mountain with a monkey on his back. If you are that lucky and you don’t get thrown off the back half way up the mountain then so be it. However the greatest way to guarantee that you will get to the top of the mountain is climb there yourself. And climb without a monkey on your back if you can help it.
Accurate Thinking is one of the master keys to success in all its ramifications. And accurate thinking is not necessarily positive thinking. Thinking positively can be a little over played in some cases. You can positively think that you own a Rolls Royce, but it will not drive itself up to your house and park itself in your drive way just because you thought positively about it. That is inaccurate thinking if you ask me. In order to own a Rolls Royce you have to buy it. And to buy it you have to afford it. And to afford it you have to earn the money. To earn the money you have to provide a product or a service that is regarded by many to be of such exceptional value that people will be willing to pay you the money with which you will afford the Rolls Royce.
And for the younger people that read this column, don’t be in a hurry to get there, it takes time and you can enjoy the ride. When I was younger, just out of school, 20 years old to be exact, I had a Mercedes Benz given to me by my mother. My father did not object. Then one day he was in the drive way and I came back sitting at the back of the Benz in the owner’s corner with a driver, chauffeuring me about. He called me aside and said these words I will never forget. He asked me how old I was, I said 20 years old. And he said that if I started to drive around with a Chauffeur at 20 years old what will I do at 40 or 50? He said I was young and as a young man I needed to do most of the things for myself. He said I will grow into these things in time and I should not be in a hurry. That advice changed my life, I took it with me since that day and it has guided me all through my life till this day.
Recently a social media blogger made a very loud splash on the internet about buying and owning a five hundred million naira home in banana Island of Lagos. I ignored the story because I know that a majority of the homes in Banana Island are valued in the billions and billions of naira. And so if none of the thousands of people that own billion naira homes have deemed it necessary to put their homes on the internet before now, I did not see the relevance of taking this story seriously. Anyway someone close to me called my attention to it and asked my opinion. I was very clear in my response. I deal with the facts I said, and I practice accurate thinking. I calculated the total income available to blog sites in Nigeria and I even went further to calculate the income earned from the top bloggers in the entire World. Most of the dollar millionaire bloggers made their fortunes after they sold their blogs to interested investors, who themselves were institutions that needed the people traffic generated by the blog and not necessarily the advert revenue which would in most cases was not the reason for the acquisition. For the Nigerian example I made it clear that the numbers do not add up. I did not doubt that the blogger made the purchase; I have no facts to confirm or refute this claim. However if the person did buy that N500 million home in Banana Island that money did not come from Blogging advertising revenue, and that is a fact. In Nigeria we accept everything that is thrown at us and do not check the facts, we do not think accurately and we make major decisions based on fallacy. Some people rushed and said they were going to start their own blogs so that they too can buy a N500 million home. I laughed at the idea, these people were making an all-important career and life altering decision based on something that may or may not be accurate.