Sunday, May 11, 2008

Doing Business in Nigeria

Doing business in Nigeria is challenging!

In the newspapers, we read about massive amounts of money being allocated for laudable projects. Unfortunately, a lot of times, these projects do not see the light of day. Corruption or poor project management stalls or kills some of these projects.

The effect is felt by everyone particularly entrepreneurs. For those power projects that were not executed, budding companies have to spend a lot of money on electricity. For those road projects that were not executed (or executed poorly) we experience traffic, wasted man-hours and vehicle wear and tear.

For us at Debonair, these experiences stare us in the face on a daily basis. Our operation is heavily reliant on logistics, advanced planning and capital. As the CEO, the responsibility rests on me to keep all our customers satisfied. Even when hundreds of customers have been served and one complains, the onus is on me to overcome all challenges to satisfy that one customer.

However, this is not always so easy. One main challenge we experience, like any other entrepreneurial venture is funds. For instance, we have a liability that will crystallize tomorrow and at the same time we need to stock up to satisfy our customers. Which do we attend to? Where do we get the funds?

These are some of the questions that entrepreneurs have to face and money management skills (and most importantly, God!) are very vital for any business owner.

As I write this, raising funds are uppermost on my mind. I believe and know we will do it.

My sign off tonight is that though doing business in Nigeria is tough, there are great rewards when you get it right.

Tough times never last, but tough people do! To all those facing challenges today, lookm towards the future and believe in God!


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

On Life and Attitude...

'A gem cannot be polished without friction nor man perfected without trials'.

Whatever you are going through, you have a choice on the attitude to take. I got this message from a friend yesterday who was telling me about 2007.

'Quick update on me: In the last one year:
- my mom was diagnosed with Nephrotic Syndrome
- she died 4 weeks before my wedding and 6 weeks before her transplant
- she was buried 2 weeks before my wedding (i actually planned a wedding and a funeral together, i pray no one ever have to do that!)
- i had my baby 2 months early due to complications
- my baby is now 4 months and doing fine.'

Do you have a problem and you think your life is over? Learn from other people. Don't be myopic and think your problem cannot be solved. recommends the following books:

1. 10 Things I Learned from Bill Porter
2. Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done
3. The Game-Changer (Released yesterday and available in Nigeria only on
4. A is for Attitude
5. Attitude is Everything

Prepare. Learn. Read

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Between Clinton and Obama...

In recent times, Americans have been in the process of deciding the next president. The battle in the Democratic Party has captured the imagination of not only the American people, but the world at large. This is primarily due to the attention of the media (which influences global thinking).

While it would be foolhardy at this point to guess the winner, I personally support Hilary Clinton. Books about both candidates make for interesting reading.

Suggested Books on Hilary Clinton

1. Living History (Hilary Clinton)
2. Hillary Clinton: Her Way (Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr)
3. A Woman In Charge (Carl Bernstein)

Suggested Books on Barack Obama

1 The Audacity of Hope (Barack Obama)
2. Dreams from My Father (Barack Obama)
3. Barack Obama: An American Story (Roberta Edwards and Ken Call)

For more on these books, visit

Prepare. Learn. Read

Quotes on Work...

I don't know why I love quotes. To me they are simple and hit the nail on the head. Throughout the month of April. I'll be dishing out quotes and recommended books on the issues being discussed. As is usually said, 'A word is enough for the wise, a quote enough for...'

Today's Quote
'The fastest way up the corporate ladder is to help those above you move higher by doing your work with diligence and zeal ' (Adebola Omololu)

We all want to do well in our personal and professional lives. To do this, you need to 'fire your boss' by making life easier for them. Learn about how best to do this so you don't get 'fired'. recommends the following books:
1. Work With Passion (Nancy Anderson)
2. Work Like You're Showing Off (Joe Calloway)
3. It's called work for a reason (Larry Winget)

Prepare. Learn. Read

Tuesday, June 5, 2007


I have always cherished the opportunity to share ideas and speak candidly on various issues. This blog represents the opportunity to share my thoughts on various issues from a Nigerian perspective and with a little bit of my personal flavour.

Good products such as this blog, must have a sponsor. I have therefore signed an exclusive 200 year contract with the company I recently set up to run an online bookstore. I would ask every reader to visit and expand your view of the world.

Now that I am done with the commercial break, let me share with you a few thoughts about... thoughts. According to a Christian preacher I admire, you cannot change outside without changing inside. Changing inside refers to changing the way you think. The way you think manifests itself in the way you act.

Let's consider that words of a few people and I'll butress this point with a story. Albert Einstein one of the greatest scientists of our time once said, 'Imagination is more important than knowledge'. In a brilliant fictional book by Mark Fisher titled 'Instant millionaire' one of my favourite lines was when the the old man said to the young man, 'When logic and immagination are in conflict, the imagination invariably takes over.

Consider this story. A man recieves a text message on his mobile phone 'You are going to die...' At first the man thinks it's a joke but he reads the message again and he begins to worry and starts thinking of who may want him dead. He frets and decides to close from work immediately. He rushes to his car and is about to start the ignition when he remembers a mafia film where the victim was killed in a car bomb during ignition. He pauses with the car keys in mid-air and hears a beep. "Oh no! He thinks. The bomb must be on a timer!". His heart is racing and he may be heading for a heart attack.........

Let's go back to where the drama started and let's hear what really happened. His friend was trying to send him a text message saying "You are going to die of laughter when you hear this". Unfortunately, he pressed the send button before he finished the message. He couldn't stop the text from going so he decided to call his friend to tell him what the excitment was all about. This is where the beep in the other man's car was coming from. It was his phone!

In this situation, our dear friend's imagination took over. He is not to be blamed for his reaction but this brings to the fore a salient lesson; Your mental state determines your physical state.

As can be seen from the above example, the mental state can be influenced positively or negatively through imagination. Books can affect your mental state positively and expand your imagination. The result is a changed person who has changed inside and is ready to change the outside world.

Are you interested in success? I am, and I welcome you to my world!