Monthly ArchiveOctober 2014

ByAdemola Morebise

Its not working

The baby tried to stand and bravely take a step. He fell down…

…And then returned to crawling, maybe this walking thing is not for me afterall. He went back to crawling. Never to attempt to walk again!

Of course, that never happens. The baby will try again and keep trying, not minding the thousands of falls and dozens of scratches he might acquire on his quest to walk and stop crawling on all four.

The baby does not give up to declare “its not working for me!” after a few tries

I do not think anyone has ever failed before, we merely stopped trying. We DECIDED to STOP trying to learn how to cook, how to write code, how to operate a computer, how to build a profitable business, and (*insert other things you stopped trying to learn here*)

It is only in the movies that the characters can go from complete idiot to genius in a few minutes. You see, in real life things work very differently! In real life, at the very start we tend to learn quite slowly, accumulating the knowledge we need little by little. Just because it does not happen overnight does not mean it is not working.

I would love to challenge you this morning to take a second look at all the things you wanted to do or learn how to do and actually TRY again. You probably should commit yourself to it, stick to getting it done and you will definitely see improvements.

It might seem as though it is not working right now, but over time it will definitely work!

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Numbers

170: World Bank has ranked Nigeria 170 out of 189 countries on how easy it is to do business. (It is good news, Nigeria used to occupy 175th position, the country moved 5 places in just 1 year)

 

ByAdemola Morebise

Location is irrelevant

I think one of the many things technology has done is to render our physical location more and more irrelevant. As such, you can serve any customer from anywhere. The only limit is your imagination (Ok, your internet connection speed might also be limiting… But that limit will pass away 😀 )

So, you do not have to start your “shop” by first renting out physical space. You may as well create a shopping website or list your goods on a marketplace like Konga or Nairaland (if you target a Nigerian market) or you can go global by listing on of the thousands of marketplaces out there.

All your team members do not have to be in the same room with you before you can hold effective meetings. If the goal is to hold meetings and not to hang out for team bonding purposes, you might as well hold your meetings over Skype, Whatsapp or conference calls. These days, we have advanced technology to a point where we can have distributed teams; a team in which members live on different continents. I think Buffer is really having a lot of success with this model, read about it here.

The key thing is to constantly think about how you can increase your business presence in places you might not have physical presence. The key is to think about how the mobile phone inside your pocket can keep generating business for you even though you are not in town

I expect more business minded folks to sit up at night, thinking: “How can I break into X COUNTRY’s Y industry from the comfort of my home?”

Technology has been given to you, what can you do with it?

(Remember, the only limit is your imagination)

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Watching The World

 

ByAdemola Morebise

Velocity, not speed

Speed is a measure of how fast you are moving. Speed is when you appear to be very busy, working hard and getting things done.

Velocity is a measure of how fast you are moving, but in a specified direction. Velocity is when you appear to be very busy, working hard, getting things done so that an overall goal can be achieved.

It is not good enough to be busy. The real question is: “What are you busy about?”

I see so many busy people everyday, who are actually busy doing nothing. All day, they can be seen working hard, downloading the internet, sorting through, learning new technologies, hacking together whatever – yet a closeup with the person in question reveals no long term view or strategy.

They could as well be running around in circles. No real progress made.

It is always worth it to spend as much time needed to figure out what exactly you are doing per time. No matter how hard working you seem to be, we cannot really tell much about what you are doing unless we know where you headed.

It continues to amaze me the amount of people who drift through life without a well thought out plan for themselves, just drifting through. There is another class of people who seem to have it all worked out, yet after 5 years of their labour, they have nothing to show for it. They are merely moving in circles.

It is not enough to work hard and move fast. The overall goal is important, set it up and keep it in view.

Move with velocity, not speed.

(It might be worth going over my vision 2020 Post again)

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Watching The World

 

ByAdemola Morebise

The fear of messing up

The fear of messing up especially after tasting a little success is quite serious.

First, a tale of 2 companies.

Company A built an effective way for people to find information on the Internet, they became very successful and in effect, they became the true homepage of the Internet. A compulsory portal for anybody who wants to use the Internet productively.

They became very successful and then they branched out, building familiar things like email, blogging systems and news aggregation services. Then they decided they had a shot at building the future, so they started building self-driving cars and delivery drones.

Of course, I am talking about Google.

Company B built a very popular forum, what exactly was done to make it a huge success appears to not really known except that the timing was right and people resonated with the idea. Company B had also built an effective way for people to find information but they stopped at that. They never really ventured out into any other business and as such, a host of other guys have been allowed to show up and takeover other key sectors like ecommerce and real estate.

Company B is Nairaland, one of the most popular Internet destinations in Africa.

I think that just as Google is running around the world and making tons of money, Nairaland also should have done likewise if the guy running it had stepped up bravely to look at how he could expand out.

What would happen to Nairaland tomorrow if a new forum somehow managed to seduce people away from it? Or will the forum remain relevant forever??

You must never allow the little success you have achieved stop you from trying to reach out to make so much more. When you have made a little success, rather than take a mis-step like Digg and mess it all up, you are tempted to sit still and do NOTHING. But is doing nothing really better than expansion attempts?

I think every smart Entrepreneur needs to realise that a true entrepreneurial career means a lifetime of projects. The initial success is not so that you retire and go to bed, the initial success is supposed to give you confidence and cash to execute the next project. Do not grow cold feet, be bold!

In fact, you owe it as a point of duty to the people who use your services, you have solved problem A for them, can you help fix B, C, D, E and even F? This is actually why Google got to build Gmail. You also owe it to your staff, you have to keep the creative people working for you fired up and working.

Cobhams sang that he would rather be a fallen hero than be afraid to rise at all. I think there is a lot of wisdom in this.

(This Post was inspired after reading this article about Nairaland)

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Watching The World

 

ByAdemola Morebise

The wisest man is dead?

I was a little boy when my sunday school teacher taught us about a wise King that lived long ago: King Solomon. She said this man was the wisest man ever and that God said nobody would ever be as wise as this man again.

I shivered on my seat.

How could a wonderful God make such a commitment to anybody? That seemed to be a dumb and stupid thing to do. So, this teacher was really telling us we could not be wiser than King Solomon??

And now that King Solomon is dead, we would no longer get the wisdom we needed? The wisest man ever is dead and the world will no longer get any wisdom?

It was not until 2011 when I finally started reading the bible and interpreting God by myself for myself that I found out my sunday school teacher (and many pastors too, by the way) got it wrong.

With all the wisdom of Solomon, he did not invent the computer, internet or smartphones. Neither did he invent horseless carriages, the ancestor of the modern cars.

Are you now saying the wisdom God gave him is really superior to the modern principles of physics? Open your eyes my dear reader, we should always seek clarity on issues and not just hide everything under the cloak of religion.

Many people attend churches and serve God under the cloak of religion. They see God as an Overlord that cannot be challenged, and they just swallow anything they are told. They fail to dig in by themselves and cross check whether the things they are been taught are correct or not.

Yet, I know the bible says God would not have us ignorant… He wants us to be wise and really understand what is going on.

When I finally dug into the King Solomon issue in 2011, a single verse of the bible did the job:

“The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” – Matthew 12: 42 (KJV)

A greater than Solomon is here!

The wisdom of God is progressive.

Let us use our minds for a moment, what is the point in been the richest man in the world when the technology to even do amazing things were not yet invented? I mean… King Solomon had no Touch screen Tablet, Television, Internet, fast cars, loud speakers, elevators, water closet… The poorest of men hustling on the streets of Lagos today probably lives a richer life than King Solomon had.

A greater than Solomon is here!

Men wiser than King Solomon are certainly alive today and men that will be much wiser than those alive now are yet to be born. The wisdom of God is progressive and it gets better and better!

THINK: If all the knowledge of God is inside the bible, then which knowledge do we study in science? Are they disjointed? Is everything in the world not interwoven and a part of each other? Are breakthroughs in technology the handiwork of the devil? If the devil has invented so many things to make our lives easier, would it not be better to go work for him?

If God is ONLY interested in my salvation and safe delivery to heaven, what then am I living for? Why not relocate to North-East Nigeria or Syrian war zones where a stray bullet or bomb will deliver me to heaven faster?

We have to always seek out answers for questions bothering our mind, we must not be confused and disillusioned yet smiling on the outside and say we are just believing.

Faith is not blind.

Faith is built upon principles, principles we need to understand! Therefore, my dear reader, I charge you this morning to always seek answers.

Ask questions, seek proper understanding and set your spirit free!

 

ByAdemola Morebise

Work ethic

One of the women in business that I admire is not anyone you probably know, she is not in the news and I do not think she is tech savvy at all, so that chances of catching her online are very slim.

She is simply known as “Iya Favor” (simply translated as “Favor’s mum”. Favor is the name of her daughter). She operates the everything store located in front of my Lagos home. She is one of the most consistent women in business I know, she has been running her store for up to 10 years (or more).

What strikes me about her is her work ethic. And that is the key to her success.

Observers can see her hard working and always looking at ways of expanding the business, adding various streams of revenue, always adding more and more products to her store. The store is usually open before 7AM and I do not think it is closed before 11PM. And She does not live inside the store.

If only she had better education, I am convinced she has the capacity to run a giant commerce operation like Shoprite or Walmart.

On the opposite side to this Iya Favor is many young people with great dreams, but lacking the work ethic needed. All young people interested in business seem to be willing to do is buy books, buy various business resources, network with other (equally lazy) Entrepreneurs and attend various seminars and forum where they will talk and talk and talk all day about how to start and grow a business.

Indeed, the average young Entrepreneur is usually interested in everything about a business except actually developing the work ethic needed to get it done. The way they set out in business, you would be forgiven for thinking they intend to simply speak the business into existence.

While Iya Favor lacks the power of an educated mind that would have allowed her to make much more money than she can ever hope to make from her current business, many young Entrepreneurs lack the power of having a good work ethic which also stops them from making any serious money or headway in their business.

The successful Entrepreneurs you read about in the news found ways of combining both. A well educated mind combined with good work ethic produces a magical result in life. Do not spare yourself! Any man who consistently wakes up before dawn and gets to work will always have enough to feed his family.

It is not enough to be a visionary, you also need to work hard. Getting the idea is only half of the work, if you do not work it out, it does not count.

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Watching The World

A big thanks to everyone who sent in their congratulatory messages for yesterday’s 100 posts milestone. (If you have not sent in your own, it is better late than never… )

 

ByAdemola Morebise

100

I am doing this for the 100th time.

Today is the 100th time in as many days that I will be publishing The Morebise Post. Waking up a great while before morning, searching within and deciding which of the 10, 000 things on my mind would be useful for my audience, typing it out, reading it twice to ensure it doesnt contain too many grammatical blunders and then check my browser history across my 4 devices to see which news article I had read in the last 24 hours that my audience might find useful.

How has it been so far?

The journey has been stress-free and very smooth! Ensuring that there is a Post been sent out everyday has been very easy, it is too easy. There is always very fast Internet connection, power supply and lots of Post ideas. Why is everybody not doing this?

Of course, it is not that easy. In fact, it is nearly the exact opposite! Sustaining the project for this long has been miraculous to say the least, several times I had thought I would fail to put out The Post and somehow, we will just publish something.

***

I woke up on July 17, 2014 with a deep burden on my mind. A lot of idea fragments dating back to 2011 had been aggregating in my mind and it dawned on me that morning that for each day I was delaying the inevitable, I was simply been irresponsible.

From #AdemolaThoughtBox to Signal.Me and some other small ideas here and there, I have always loved finding vehicles for my thoughts and sharing what I know with people. The major issue I have is non-consistency, I could go on a roll for 7 days and then switch off for another 4 weeks until finally the project dies and I move on again.

That morning, I knew I had to roll the dice again.

I decided I was going to make it email based newsletter instead of SMS or a conventional blog. My #AdemolaThoughtBox was SMS based and compressing thoughts into 306 characters was not so easy. I had a lot of blogging operations already and they all sucked. I was just not so consistent.

I coined the name The Morebise Post in a few minutes, then I headed over to Tinyletter to revive my user account there, the one I created in 2011 for this very same purpose! I had simply titled it Demola Writes back then, so in a few minutes I renamed it to The Morebise Post and I was good to go.

To make it all real to me, I signed myself up and sent the first post to myself. All along I was yet to agree with myself that we would do it everyday.

That changed a few hours later as Temitayo, a member of my think tank managed to somehow squeeze out a promise from me that #TMP would be published DAILY and not anytime I am in the mood to talk, I knew I had work to do and I had to sit up for the first time in my life. I was not about to break a promise to my subscribers.

Then the journey started!

***

The best decision I made in 2014 was definitely the decision to start The Morebise Post. But it was not an easy decision to make, I kept thinking about how it was going to suck and how much I was going to fail at delivering my promise of sharing THE POST everyday.

Today is the 100th POST, the momentum is gathering and we are not showing any signs of slowing down.

Over to you, which project(s) are on hold because you do not feel like it yet? Which project(s) are you stalling?

The reason you are actually holding back is because of fear… that overwhelming fear!

The remedy is to just dive in.

Jump out the window of the airplane and build a parachute as you start crashing down to certain death.

I did not even set up a proper website until the 30th edition of #TMP. The people who said the journey of a thousand miles begins with a step were certainly correct. The challenge for most of us is taking that first step.

For taking that first step and committing to the mission, I have changed dramatically as a person and I am becoming really good at this. I am reaping immense benefits from this project, and that is why whether I have 10 subscribers or 1 billion subscribers I will write as best as I can. And even if nobody reads #TMP, I will read it by myself, I usually read every edition at least 3 times. I am the #1 subscriber after all!

Dive in anyhow, Dive in crappy, improve as you go on. It is ok to start from zero, it is ok to start small and grow up from there.

Just dive in!

just dive in!

Just dive in already!

 

ByAdemola Morebise

You need money

I would not like to keep you ignorant; to run your projects, you will need money.

I believe that the money you need however is not necessarily inside the pocket of investors that are usually skeptic about your own ability to deliver and also skeptic about the business idea.

I am of the opinion that it is best for a first time Entrepreneur to grow her first business without any external funding from investors, this is a great training that helps you become a better person who can think clearly and manage funds better.

The money you need is out there alright, and with the right strategy and some discipline on your own part, you can get the funds you need to finance your projects.

The right strategy

The money you need to run your business is inside the pocket of your potential customers, what you really need to do is to come up with creative ways to get your money from them.

The type of business training I received required that I developed the boldness of an armed robber and ask people to give me their money before I deliver any service. Or you can talk with the clients, get them to place their order for your services and you can deliver the service within 30 days.

Coming up with the right strategy to use is very important, and it starts with asking the right questions. Once you unlock the right questions, you will get correct answers.

Some Discipline

Discipline is quite important as you might have to cut down on your expenses. People who are starting businesses are not richer than you, they are simply more focused and they know what they want. Many Entrepreneurs building businesses tend to have few (but very good) clothes, they do not go on shopping sprees every weekend and they cannot afford to take out a girlfriend. In fact, they are usually girlfriend-less. (I am speaking from my little experience here)

Where does all the money goes? They save it up and use it wisely, investing the money into the business, buying books, resources and attending good seminars.

As for the time they do not invest into high maintenance relationships and other social vices? The disciplined Entrepreneur pours that time into the business and over time, excellence can be seen in the business. The extra hours allows the disciplined Business owner to think, think and re-think about the business’s offering and services over time.

I half-jokingly told my friend on Sunday that since I was girlfriend-less and did not hangout with the boys at the bar or even support a football club. I had freed up enough time to run up to a dozen projects simultaneously 😀

If you can discipline yourself, and deny yourself of a few goodies, you will have freed up some money and time that can move things for you. You will be able to start your project in a little way while a good strategy will then move you to the next level.

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Well, as they say… Money is not everything. Therefore, in some future posts I will discuss other kinds of things that can be substituted for startup capital.

If you know anyone who would need this kind of advice, kindly direct them to http://themorebisepost.com for them to subscribe.

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Watching The World

 

ByAdemola Morebise

No Excuses

Excuses are generally bad news and bad market for forward moving people.

No matter how much resources you have or lack, you will still somehow find out that you are unable to get things done and you will always find something or someone to dump the blame upon.

That is why you have to decide deep within yourself that you will not permit anything, whether real or imagined to stop you from getting things done.

We have said it before on #TMP that whether you have $1 or $1 billion in your pocket, develop the mindset that you will get the resources you need to do whatever you need to do.

Some people are always 3-5 years away from starting their personal project, quitting their job or taking any serious leap in their life. Every 10 years, they are still 3-5 years away until the dreams finally die.

You could take the leap today, surely, but you would not. Our brain is so powerful that it can conjure new excuses faster than we can even think.

The truth of the matter is just that excuses are excuses to put the brain to sleep.

If you can decide that you are unstoppable and henceforth, nothing will stop you. You will find out that where others get to and stop because of an excuse, no matter how legitimate the excuse might be, your own resolve to keep going will pay off and you will get further ahead.

If you can decide not to allow your brain to go to sleep because of the excuses facing you, you will be amazed with new ideas and workarounds you will think up. Suddenly, you will start to see possibilities everywhere.

There is no stopping you now!

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Watching The World