Saturday, 27 April 2013

Why should I be an entrepreneur II

Hi y'all let us continue from where we stopped last week..............
To those in the ‘job market’

I believe that my personal experience affords me some insight for this group. After NYSC, I hardly spent a month before I landed a plum job in the bank; at that time the term ‘job market’ only represented a metaphor to me. But after leaving the bank job and spending two years going from one job interview to the other and leaving a string of disappointments trailing in my wake, I knew it was not a figure of speech but a way of life.

Nigeria churns out 500,000 graduates on a yearly basis<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[i]<!--[endif]--> and there are just no provisions to employ them. The state of our economy has turned some of our graduates into career job-applicants and others have become perpetual students always running a post-graduate course or writing a professional certification. Why is this so?

The manufacturing sector is almost non-existent in our country thanks to a comatose energy sector and the organized service industry on the other hand is swamped. Foreign investment that could boost the economy and used to flow like ‘pure water’ a few years ago has dried up in the face of global economic meltdown, rushed employment drives like SURE-P have failed, guys with better Master’s degree from the UK and the Scandinavia are coming back to compete for the few available jobs and the nightmare called Boko Haram has filled our streets with youths from the north that are willing to do jobs that once paid well for peanuts. How many more reasons do you need before you consider entrepreneurship? I know by now you are ready with a list of things why entrepreneurship isn’t for you and it’s a good sign; it shows you have considered my write up enough to come up with answers. But if you stick with me, we will together explore the possibilities to address these objections.

Those working at the moment

I will address this group in two parts namely, those with the plum jobs (that we all desire) and those just managing somewhere.

The first set of workers are found in companies like Shell, GTB, GLO, Ericsson, PWC and the like; they are the poster boys and girls of the ideal employee and are incidentally the most difficult group to convince about anything entrepreneurship.

My logic to them is simple: Your company’s organogram is pyramidal; that means if 80 of you were employed this year, in two years when it’s time for promotion to the next level, the number will reduce. In another two years the number will be whittled down again; on and on it goes until only one person among you sits on the top as GMD or CEO or some other fanciful title. People say, there is always room at the top; but the top they are talking about is the one in the entrepreneurial world, not the employee world where you belong. Hence my advice to have something running by the side, something to fall on when the advised-to-resign mail pops up in your mail box.

For the other set, my peeps managing like myself. We work in places like the state secretariat or Ministry of Something. We work for private organizations with no registration records at CAC and the ever-pervasive One Man Business. Some in this group look forward to a day when they will be collecting a pension. Each time I hear them say, “At least, this job is a ‘pensionable’ one,” I laugh inside and wonder if they are aliens in the country or if they have never heard of what our ‘pensionable’ parents and grandparents endure to collect the paltry sum. We don’t need any omens than that of thieving rogues like John Yakubu Yusuf, given a slap on the wrist by fining him N750, 000 for lining his pockets and that of his unborn generations with N30bn of our pension fund; money you and I are banking on!

The others with jobs that are not pensionable are the ones that I feel for the most, unfortunately my pity can’t put food on their tables all I can offer is an advice: Walk with me each week on this blog as I show you a better way (or at least another way). Put your plentiful objections aside for a moment and read me next week as we go a little philosophical before we talk about how you, I mean you, can become an entrepreneur.

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<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[i]<!--[endif]--> Suleiman Nasiru. Save our education now! Nigeria Exchange News [Internet] 2008 Nov 6 [cited 2012 Apr 13]. Available from:

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