When an Igbo businessman opens shop in the morning, he has one purpose in mind. When a prospect walks in through the door, his purpose is still the same. When he uses polite addresses like ‘Sir’ and ‘Ma’ for a customer younger than him, his purpose still hasn’t changed. As he offers the customer a seat and turns on the fan to make them comfortable, he is still pursuing that purpose. When the haggling gets hard to the point of irritating him, he maintains his cool for that purpose.
When he has to run a whole street in search of change, his purpose has begun to materialize. In fact, Igbo traders distinguish themselves by their willingness to humbly go from one shop to the next, looking for change, no matter how negligible, to satisfy the buyer.
|Trade Fair Complex, Lagos|
They’ll politely pack the customer’s purchase into the shopping bag, while squeezing a business card into the customer’s hand and asking him to come again for even better bargains. They understand that the customer is a roving king who can take his business elsewhere.It is not until the customer finally parts with his money in
exchange for the goods, that the Igbo businessman’s purpose is finally achieved.