I was on Facebook the other day and saw a friend creating a group to sell her wares. I kept an eye on her project, weeks and months went by, nothing of significant economic value was happening in her group.
Like most people, you might have heard that it is possible to use social media platforms like Facebook groups for example to grow your business, but what you failed to notice is just how much effort, thought and planning goes into such endeavors.
There are people that use Facebook groups to sell products and services in range of 5 – 6 figures or more, consistently, every month.
If you aspire to join their ranks, move closer and learn. They must have a method, a playbook they follow that guarantees them success week after week.
Things are not usually as easy as they seem.
Am I underestimating how hard it is to use social media to grow my business and influence?
Do some research, learn how it really works. You can seek out expert guidance.
As I laid down to sleep, I had an epiphany a few weeks ago… it dawned on me that my business should not also go to sleep.
Even if my laptop is powered off and all my human team members are also taking a well deserved night rest, our businesses should remain active, seeking out new customers and generating leads.
This was not a fantasy… using technology that already exists, this can be done. So, I jumped out of bed and grabbed my laptop, was my business going to sleep?? No way!
It took me a few hours, and I identified exactly how I would keep things going while I went to sleep. So… let’s just say I sleep better at night now.
You see, in the near future, all business support services, non-core business work will be completely handled by automated systems and now is a great time to get a head start.
If you are willing to see your business website as a staff member that is awake 24 hours everyday, then perhaps you can also set goals and resources towards making it a more efficient member of the team.
Does my business go to sleep every night as soon as I close my eyes?
Look for how you can build automated systems that work in the business round the clock. You can talk to me about it.
It is the soft skills we have that gets us ahead and not necessarily the hard skills we pursue night and day. Soft skills like strong work ethic, positive attitude, good communication skills, time management, ability to handle criticism well.
Hard skills are very important – no doubt. But we also have to pay attention to the soft skills, they get us ahead.
Do I pay enough attention towards developing my soft skills?
Pay attention and develop your soft skills, they get us ahead
In this fast, all connected world, it is a real irony that the number of people moving around without any real knowledge about things is also increasing.
Information overload and yet basic knowledge is lacking. All we have now is fast media, high on noise and low on quality and depth.
My advice: do not fall for it. Having real knowledge is always going to get you ahead and give you a real edge over everyone else. You need sound information, not cheap thrills.
You do not need a quick fix or a cool gimmick that will give you an edge for a while, only for it to be a passing fad.
Let us be honest, real and useful information is not likely to be gotten from all those messages circulating on Whatsapp and Facebook, you will have to do some digging and research. You need to commit to educating your mind with real knowledge and becoming a bit smarter everyday.
You read #TMP already, that is a good start, but you need to do more.
Seek understanding and clarity on the critical issues of your life, career and purpose.
Am I really educating my mind daily with the kind of info I consume?
Seek and ye shall find. Look for good materials that are high in quality and depth, learn the basic fundamentals and educate your mind.
In real life, there is no first position or even any finish line. Take your time to get proper training and then enter your closet to build something amazing…. There is always room at the top for excellent work that people find meaningful and relevant!
The craze to rush to the market without having something amazing is fruitless in the long run. The era of building average, mediocre products is long gone. If you fail to bring a certain premium to the market, it is failure.
This is why I think rushing and seeking media attention without having anything serious ongoing is a fruitless exercise; a race to nowhere.
Am I ready for the market or do I need to develop a little bit more?
They said slow and steady wins the race. True words.
Watching The World
You have to start with the basics. Starting from the roots of what you are doing, from there it is always easier to build on top. Strip down to the bare essentials, learn the nitty-gritty, understand how it really works.
Before we learn frameworks or hacks or shortcuts, we should try to understand how it all fits together. As much as possible, you to ensure that your destiny is in your own hands.
I did not learn CodeIgniter or any of the dozen or so PHP frameworks peddled back in the days, rather I learnt the underlying programming language; PHP first, then the frameworks. PHP will always be relevant, the frameworks come and go just like fashion trends.
How have I skimped on learning the core of what I do? What amends can be made?
Learn the basics.
Watching The World
Every progressive relationship you have will experience some challenges, great relationships rarely are smooth rides all through. Infact, if the rides are all smooth, there might just be a problem…
Every relationship that will stand the test of time must have passed through fire and survived it. If you are in the right relationships with people – mentors, proteges, friends, partners, whatever – then you should brace up for any turbulence that might prop up.
Many people have thrown out divinely arranged relationship over one offense or the other. Jesus Christ always maintained that nothing was impossible with God, yet one day he mused: “it is impossible for offenses to arise”.
Your mentor will offend you, that is not a prophecy. However, you must be ready to swallow it and humble your self back in training.
A real mentor should also know that her proteges will offend her and annoy her often, she must also have forgiven them in advance! (I had at least 2 of my mentors tell me this over the years, I also quickly adopted that mindset, makes it super easier to sleep at night!)
If you cannot handle some turbulence in your relationships with key people in your life, then you are not ready for greatness.
Which key relationship have I lost over some offenses? How have I fared since then? Can I seek out and repair such key relationships?
I made up my mind that there are some people in my life that are so key to my success that I have forgiven them already, in advance for whatsoever they might do to me. Perhaps you can make a similar pledge?
If I stepped into an electronic shop today and find a TV set branded GOOGLE TV for sale, I would probably buy it without much questioning (ofcourse, after googling to ensure it not a chinese prank).
I would do these simply because I have grown to trust the brand: Google over the years and they have also been able to maintain quite an impressive run.
I have realised that that old saying that “a good name is better than silver and gold” is very valid and potent. The most important thing to ensure longevity of a business is the brand power. If you can build a powerful brand, you are set.
Great brands survive generation after generation.
Coca-Cola has remained relevant since forever, it will not be easy for any other player to operate on Coca-Cola’s turf. Virgin group, another great brand tried it and got burnt.
Perhaps, this is why NOKIA 6, the first Nokia branded smartphone in about 3 years or so sold out within 60 seconds of its first flash sale. Yes, the market is hungry for a Nokia phone! Who would have thought?
Concentrate your forces, build a brand. Then leverage the brand to do other things… perhaps I might be shopping your TV products soon!
Do you have a brand or you are just hustling day-to-day? What do you have a reputation for?
Your brand will outlive you and your children if you do it right. Concentrate, build a brand.
It took the murder of a delivery boy, colorfully named Wishmasters to get Flipkart, an Indian ecommerce behemoth create a panic button and also try to increase safety of its delivery boys.
This raises up a lot of questions about the on-demand economy, and the future of logistics.
The truth about ecommerce is that it is a more expensive undertaking that traditional commerce operations. For all the talk about e-platforms empowering people and creating jobs, the reality is that the bottom tier of these online operations are just messy.
mPesa’s agents in the rural villages of Kenya are not amassing easy wealth for providing banking services to the underserved people. Delivery boys working for e-commerce companies are unsung heroes who keep the services running, and yet have no real stake in the bigger scheme of things.
The people who make all the money still at the top of the ladder. Those below do a lot of work, get paid peanuts and will soon be replaced by machines.
Am I a real stakeholder in my place of business operations, or am I just a disposable delivery boy?
Do I respect my partners and workers and treat them well?
Move up the ladder. Respect people that work for you and look after them properly, don’t wait for a disaster to happen first.
There are leaps a person needs to make to move forward in life. The first has to be moving from nothing to small thing.
You have to plan to move up the ladder, and you really need to face facts and realise that you might not be able to go from broke to billionaire overnight. You have to grow measure by measure, getting a bit stronger and wiser every single day.
There are things you have the capacity to do and things you cannot.
I have been challenging students of higher institutions I come across to start thinking about how they can make NGN10k every month from tangible business and services. As a serving youth corper in Nigeria, think about how NGN20k can be made every month.
I know, NGN 10k per month is small money, but we have to start somewhere my friends. If you do 10k per month in 2017, in 2018 you set a goal of 30k per month… by 2020, if you are consistent, you will be ready mentally to make millions every month.
When I was a student, nobody challenged me to think this way, but when I was a serving youth corper, I was able to do better.
Just don’t sit idle and join the chorus: “recession! recession!! recession!!!”
Move from NOTHING to SMALL THING in 2017. That is the best thing you can do for yourself.
How can I start making money from tangible business and services I can run from around me?
Get to work. Set goals and smash them, move from NOTHING to SMALL THING, from SMALL THING to SOMETHING and then to BIG THING.
Watching The World