blueprint afric logo
   ENTREPRENEURS

FOOD MEETS FASHION FESTIVAL is an annual event aim at bridging the gap between the food and fashion industry and the influencers within. 

This is the biggest lifestyle event in southeast Nigeria that would leave prints in the city of Enugu, attracting over a thousand enthusiasts for a day filled with networking, games, cookouts, fashion runway, meet and greet session, panel discussions, discounted mini markets, and so much more.


This year’s festival, themed ”For The Culture” is slated to hold on November 16th 2019 

At THE BASE LANDMARKS ENUGU and is predicted to exceed expectations. 


Beyond the food, drinks and fashion exhibition, this year’s fest will equally be marked with Board, video and card games, music performances, Cooking competition and fun activities for kids.


Come Network and share in the New Enugu Lifestyle.

#EnuguFoodMeetFashion

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 140 

When I was younger, I had always wanted to grow up to be the kind of woman Oprah is....not that I am all grown up now.

We almost kind of have the same childhood pattern. No, I didn't have a violent childhood but at some point we were leaning into poverty. I don't know how we escaped it but if Oprah was able to escape the kind of childhood she had, then I can understand how we escaped ours.

Being successful and independent is not a 123 something or a straight line affair but its an authentic way to earning a worthwhile lifestyle. You should know though that being confidence is entirely different from being independent..... story for another day.

Anyway, Oprah went from an impoverished and violent childhood to an incredibly successful talk show host, actress, producer, and philanthropist.Oprah Winfrey has become one of the most influential and inspiring individuals in the world.

Oprah has certainly changed lives for millions of people. But, she’s also inadvertently influenced business owners, like myself, through these twelve lessons.


1. Always be authentic

“I had no idea that being your authentic self could make me as rich as I’ve become. If I had, I’d have done it a lot earlier.”


There’s only Oprah Winfrey. She never imitated anyone else - no matter what anyone told her early in her career. She found her own voice that resonated with audiences, and ultimately, lead to her becoming one of the most successful talk show hosts of all-time.


People will support you and your business if you’re authentic since they can smell BS from a mile away.


2. Take risks

“I believe that one of life’s greatest risks is never daring to risk.”


Oprah didn’t find success by playing it safe. For example, in 1988 she had a group of Neo-Nazis on her show. The decision was obviously controversial and Winfrey regretted it, and said so. However, it put her and her show in the national spotlight.


3. Thrive on challenges

“Challenges are gifts that force us to search for a new center of gravity. Don’t fight them. Just find a new way to stand.”


There will always be obstacles to overcome as a business owner. Instead of resisting these challenges you have to be flexible and learn how to adapt. If you do not, how do you expect to survive when the market changes?


4. Do your best

“My philosophy is that not only are you responsible for your life but doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.”


No matter what your situation is in life, Oprah has always encouraged her audience to do and be their best. If you’re a mechanic, then be the best mechanic in the world. As a business owner, you want to deliver the best products and services to your customers. For example, Zappos strives to deliver outstanding customer service. And, it’s worked. They have a dedicated fan-base because they have one of the best customer service around.


5. Go with your gut

“Your gut is your inner compass. Whenever you have to consult with other people for an answer, you’re headed in the wrong direction.”


Some of Oprah’s greatest moments of success can be attributed to her listening to her instincts. As a business owner, you have to do the same. When something doesn't feel right, or when it does, don't ignore that feeling.


Take Steve Jobs, for example. He initially turned down the pitch for the now famous “Think Different” campaign. But, Jobs changed his mind and said, “What am I doing? Screw it. It’s the right thing. It’s great.”


6. Learn from failure

“Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.”


You’ve no doubt heard this over and over again. Business owners are bound to face failure. Here’s the thing. Failure isn’t the end of the world. I’ve personally experienced failure. Oprah was told early in her career that she was not right for TV. Bill Gates first company Traf-O-Data folded. It happens to the best of us. But, the successful individuals embrace failure and learn how to skip those same mistakes the next time around.


7. Share your personal story

“Books were my pass to personal freedom. I learned to read at age 3, and discovered there was a whole world to conquer that went beyond our farm in Mississippi.”


If you’re an Oprah fan, then you’re aware of her personal struggles throughout her life - specifically the horrific fact that she was sexually assaulted at the age of nine. Sharing these personal stories can help you build a bond with your audience since there are people who can relate to you. It also shows that you’re transparent. That’s why so many entrepreneurs like myself have been so open about about failures.


8. Don’t worry about your competitors

"The way you step up your game is not to worry about the other guy in any situation, because you can't control the other guy. You only have control over yourself. So it's like running a race. The energy that it takes to look back and see where the other guys are takes energy away from you. And if they're too close, it scares you. So, that's what I would say to my team all the time: Don't waste your time in the race looking back to see where the other guy is or what the other guy is doing. It's not about the other guy. It's about what can you do. You just need to run that race as hard as you can. You need to give it everything you've got, all the time, for yourself."


I’m not saying that you completely neglect your competitors. I’m saying that you shouldn’t get consumed into what they’re doing. When we started offering online invoicing to our clients, we obsessed about what others were doing. We mimicked everything. This ended up wasting a lot of time and resources that we didn't need to spend.


Instead, devote your time and resources into making the best business possible for your customers. This will spread your business 10x faster. 


9. Help others

“What I know for sure is that what you give comes back to you.”


Oprah is known for giving back to the community. But, so are the most successful people in the world like Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Warren Buffett, and Larry Page.


The reason? Giving back makes us happier and healthier. And, it can connect with customers who champion the same causes as you do. I call this "Unicorn Habits."


10. Follow your passion, not the money

“What I know is, is that if you do work that you love, and the work fulfills you, the rest will come.”


Never start a business for the money. That could arguably be the first lesson in Startups 101. Businesses succeed because the founders are passionate and believe in what they’re doing. This passion motivates them during the rough times and attracts employees and customers. Not how much money is in your bank account.


As Oprah has also said, "The reason I've been able to be so financially successful is my focus has never, ever for one minute been money."


11. Be grateful

“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”


Oprah has been known for her gratitude. Whether if it was giving her audience members a car or taking her crew to Hawaii for a vacation, she realized that without these people she wouldn’t be so successful. Always find ways to thank your customers and employees. It doesn’t have to be a car or trip to Hawaii, but discounts and a handwritten thank you card can go a long way.


12. Keep good company

"Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher."


Negative people will only drag you down. Surround yourself with people who will not only challenge your ideas, but can also be a support system when you need them. This could be your friends, employees, business partners, or your spouse. These people are an important equation when determining your success. I know I wouldn’t be where I’m at without the support of my dear wife, my wonderful friends and my great family.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 204 

I find it impossible rather than difficult to put an equals sign between my work life and my personal life.

As a matter of fact, my personal life went down the hill the moment I started work. It's just recently I am trying to pull it back up the cliff.

Whether it's your career or academic life stroke your personal life, maintaining the balance between the two can get pretty hectic. Most people like myself can admit to having their school or work life intrude on their relationships or families and vice versa.

Being able to strike a balance between your professional and personal life can help you become more productive and less likely to burnout. This balancing act takes careful planning and preparation, but it is possible.


1. Be time conscious. In essence, try to separate work and play. I know you'll probably roll your eyes at this and wonder if that's not what you are having difficulty doing.

Let me give an example; for those working from home separating work time from home time is almost impossible but to counteract this issue, you need a distinctive work zone.

If you telecommute then you may need to have a separate space for your work or studies. This separate place can be a makeshift office space or a local library. If you work in a formal organization then you have to try hard to pay attention to when its time to switch over to your personal life.


2. Think of your future self.    

Wonder deep into questions like; Is this the kind of work enthusiast I want to be? Do I want to grow up with the inability to make out time for my family? Do I want to be socially awkward?

If your answer to the above is NO then I think I have said enough here. Work hard at the office, get up and get back into your family life or other relationships.


3. Optimize your day

Each day presents its own unique challenges and opportunities, but you have to find ways to make your day more efficient and productive if you want to leave work at work.


Personally, I’m a morning person(even though I end up working all day). It’s when I have the most energy and my mind feels sharpest. But not everyone works that way. I have friends that work well at night. 

This means knowing yourself well and optimizing your day to take advantage of it.


4. If It proves impossible or hectic then try creating a work time table. It will help you keep track on when you're supposed to call bae or go pick up the kids.


Most of us struggle to find a balance between our jobs and our personal lives at some point in our career. Finding that balance takes time. So, remember to think about your future self and do what you can right now to ensure you have the balance you want later on.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 250 

Her name is Nere Teriba. Nere is the kind of wave-making entrepreneur I would love to be in my next life( this life has already been occupied). She is young, she is determined, she has limitless ambitions and most importantly she is just 36 years. She is the managing director and vice-chairman of Kian Smith Trade & co. ltd, a company she created as far back as 2012. The company is very active in consulting, extractive industries, mining concession management and mineral trading in Nigeria.

The news of her gold refinery project in Nigeria surfaced in 2018 and was scheduled to be completed last month. The structure will earn Nere a spot in the history of industries in Nigeria as she'd be the first and youngest Nigeria to refine gold locally.

Nere's indigenous mineral company Kian Smith trade & Co. Ltd is behind the development of this gold refinery, whose construction work started in the Southwestern state of Ogun on the 13th of December 2018 and ended in late February 2019. The actual start-up of the refinery's activities was slated to kick off  June 2019.


Mining in Nigeria

Organized mining in Nigeria started in 1903 when the British Secretary of State for the Colonies established the Mineral Survey of the Southern Protectorate of Nigeria. In 1904, a survey of the Northern Protectorate was also established as the exploration of mineral resources for use as raw materials in Britain began. As a result, several mineral deposits including Columbite, Bitumen, Coal, Iron Ore and Gold were discovered. However, it was not until 1913 that Gold production started, peaking in the 1930s before World War II brought about a decline.

Nigeria had no choice but to participate in the war, being a colony of Britain. With Britain’s economic, industrial and military power weakened by World War I, the kingdom fell back on its colonies, using both their human and natural resources to prosecute WWII. Colonial companies abandoned mines during the war and the gold mining industry has not recovered since then.

Although in the 1980s the Nigerian Mining Corporation (NMC) resumed gold exploration, it could not sustain it. Fast forward to the 2000s, artisanal mining has become a thing in Nigeria, from Bin Yauri in northern Nigeria’s Kebbi State, to Bagega in Zamfara State where 163 people died from lead poisoning in 2010.


Artisanal Mining

Artisanal mining had peaked in Bagega when gold prices skyrocketed during the Great Recession. Even farmers left their crops and focused on mining. During the period, the price of gold went as high as $1,000 per troy ounce, so much that even small finds by small-scale miners paid well.

Till date, most of the mining done in Nigeria is done by artisanal and small-scale miners (ASM), making regulations difficult to enforce.


Illegal Gold Mining In Nigeria

“The thing is, there has been a huge gap. We abandoned the sector, went for oil and the people took up the vacuum,” Nere explains, adding that their activities, while artisanal is not necessarily illegal.


“So, illegal miners are not necessarily artisanal miners. Sometimes, there are huge companies mining illegally. Mining illegally is if you are mining off permit and not following due process,” the Kian Smith boss explains.


With a renewed commitment to developing the mining industry, the Nigerian government, like others across Africa, is beginning to recognize how important artisanal and small-scale miners are to the growth of the industry. Hence, the government ministry in charge of mining in Nigeria is trying to formalize artisanal mining to ensure some form of regulation in the space.


Kian Smith is working with small and medium scale miners to source gold for its refinery. The company is also working with artisanal miners, whose activities it is going to be an important part of formalizing.


“One of the major reasons several small-scale miners are not formalized is because of royalty payments, but we have found a way around this,” Nere says, explaining how Kian Smith will ensure the ASMs it works with are formalized. “One of the incentives we want to give our suppliers is paying royalties on their behalf.”


The idea seems to be working fine, as Kian Smith has been able to sign up 200 suppliers in less than three weeks. “We will help them get registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission in January,” Nere says.


Kian Smith will also be sourcing gold for its refinery from other parts of Africa, including Ghana, Sierra Leone, and Tanzania. One supplier working across Ghana and Sierra Leone have already committed to supplying Kian Smith 100Kg of gold per month. In all, the company has signed Memoranda of Understanding with about 200 suppliers.


Although Nigeria is believed to have gold reserves of up to 200 million oz, there are no records to show exactly how much gold is mined in the country.


“But from my research, there are about 2 tonnes of gold physically in circulation each month,” says Nere. However, she admits that “we can’t quantify how much of that 2 tonnes is from neighboring African countries, and how much of that 2 tonnes is mined locally”.


Nigeria’s neighbors have been more productive, with Ghana producing 95 tonnes of gold in 2015. Mali produced 50 tonnes in the same year and Burkina Faso produced 34 tonnes, but Nigeria could only manage 4 tonnes, as records show. Nere believes this figure shows how much the country could be losing by not formalizing artisanal mining which even accounted for a huge percentage of the 4 tonnes reported in 2015. Most of the countries with decent gold production records in Africa have begun to recognize artisanal mining and are looking for ways to formalize their activities.


In Ghana, artisanal and small-scale miners, popularly known as galamsey have become increasingly important. They are responsible for all diamond production in the West African country and their contribution to gold production is increasing. The government is now training small-scale miners in sustainable mining methods as part of a roadmap that seeks to address illegal mining in the country.


Nere thinks there is a tech solution Nigeria can adopt. The Computer Engineering graduate said her company created a mobile solution — Zokia system, a mobile platform to register and bank artisanal miners.


“When we were doing our pilot in Chikun, Kaduna state, we registered 1200 artisanal miners, tagging the gold from mine, through the value chain, all the way,” she says. “We also used mobile money, as a way to eventually sensitize them, to get them off cash payment and keep their monies safe. More than 300 of the registered 1,200 use mobile money for payments.”


Nere explains that as good as the solution could be for formalizing mining of all scales and reducing the incidence of illegal mining, artisanal and small-scale miners have no reason to spend money on tech, as they do not see it as essential to their business.


However, governments committed to reducing illegal mining to the barest minimum can pay for a tech solution such as Kian Smith’s Zokia System and make it accessible to artisanal miners for free. That could be a huge step in formalizing artisanal mining, especially in Nigeria.


Nere Teriba, Kian Smith, Nigeria's 1st Gold Refinery Photo Credits: Fotolighthouse for TheNerveAfrica


Investing in Mining

There have been attempts in the past to bring the mining industry up to date to make it attractive to private investment. Beginning in 2007, the Nigerian Minerals and Mining Act was introduced, setting the rules for the exploration and exploitation of solid minerals. The law stated that the government owns all the country’s mineral resources. However, in 2011, the year Kian Smith was registered in the country, the government released new mining regulations, which was believed would bring about greater accountability in the sector. This also was reviewed, leading to the Roadmap for the Growth and Development of the Nigerian Mining Industry which was adopted in September 2016.


The country is gradually getting it right, showing an unprecedented commitment to the growth of the mining industry, with the issuance of a gold refining license to Kian Smith one of the recent wins in the industry. The company has already started work on the site of its new refinery in Ogun State, southwest Nigeria. Nigeria’s Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development Hon. Abubakar Bawa Bwari broke the ground at the site on December 13 as construction began.


Nere believes that for every player in the mining industry who can get their acts together, banks are always ready to do business. After all, she’s working with some banks to bring her refinery to life next year. Nere says the refinery has the potential to provide more than 500,000 direct and indirect jobs. But beyond jobs, Kian Smith is interested in helping to build a gold value chain in Nigeria.


Nere is hopeful things will get better, but admits that the mining industry in Nigeria is a tough one to play in. She highlights policy inconsistency and the reaction of mining communities to operators as two of the major challenges the industry faces.


“The reason why the sector has struggled and even investors have issues is because the Nigerian ecosystem does not encourage long-term investment and perseverance to get anything,” Nere says. “Everybody wants money now.”


One of the issues Nere’s Kian Smith is taking up with the government is how to grant gold a VAT-free status. She explained the dynamics of VAT as it concerns gold.


“Gold should be VAT-free because it’s a financial instrument. However, even if there will be VAT on gold, it should not be too high so as to encourage export. We need the government to review VAT status on gold bars and coins,” Nere says.


According to her, the Nigerian government is working with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and other bodies to decide an efficient policy on gold products and alloys.

Kian Smith is also working on seeing import duties on gold and gold doré reduced.


Sustainability

Nere says Kian Smith is committed to maintaining high standards, from the purity of gold to sustainability in production. The company’s refinery in Ogun State has the capacity to produce 3 tonnes of gold and 1 tonne of silver per month, both at purities of 99.99 percent.


UNIDO will help Kian Smith in sustainable mining, supporting ASMs that want to supply Kian Smith and are committed to sustainable mining. Kian Smith is also working with international development organization Pact, to ensure due diligence and safety of miners, as well as curb illegal mining.


Once Kian Smith produces its ethical gold, it will be looking towards central banks, jewelers in the Middle East, Turkey, Switzerland and several parts of Africa.


Already, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has committed to buying gold from Kian Smith as it stocks up the country’s gold reserves.


“CBN has not said volume, but they are ready to buy gold in either Naira or USD. We are hopeful that by the end of the second quarter, their terms and conditions will be clear,” Nere says.


Kian Smith is also in talks with other central banks and has met with the London Bullion Metal Association (LBMA), Responsible Jewelry Council (RJC) and World Gold Council (WGC) towards international certification process for Nigeria’s gold.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 196 

The co-founders of Sorbabes don't particularly care what people call their product, be it sorbet, ice cream or non-dairy frozen dessert. The important thing is that potential customers don't let the sorbet label get in the way of trying it.


"We created something that consumers don't necessarily know how to approach," said Nicole Cardone, co-founder of Sorbabes. "Getting people to understand what sorbet can be and how we're making it different continues to be a challenge."


Sorbet, of course, is a frozen treat made of fruit and sugar. It doesn't contain dairy (unlike sherbet), which makes it, yes, plant-based. Typically, it's not creamy, but the Sorbabes -- Cardone and co-founder Deborah Gorman -- have introduced nut butter-based sorbets that customers have said is more like ice cream. And that's just fine with the former New Yorkers, who even made a fun ad around the "misconception."


"People have had negative experiences with sorbet, that it's too icy or it tastes too sweet," Gorman said. "That exists in every category, but I think because sorbet is such a small category, we have to keep educating so people understand what it can be and what is out there."


They've been educating both consumers and retail partners since kicking off the bootstrapped business by selling their sorbet at farmer's markets and into small shops in the Hamptons and New York City, and it's paid off. Sorbabes brought in $1.7 million in revenues last year and expects at least $5 million this year. Its products can be found in 5,600 stores, and the company expects to be sold nationally soon. Sorbabes -- whose best-selling flavors are Raz’n Berry, Peanut Butta Luva and Jam’n Lemon -- plans to introduce novelties next year. The company is in a good place since trends have shifted in its favor, with consumers increasingly seeking out natural and dairy-free products.


"We've always been non-dairy and plant-based -- it's just been a happy accident all along," Gorman said. "But we've stayed true to that. We think we really own that space in a way where our identity as a brand is built in this better-for-you experience that does not sacrifice flavor. The flavor is the reason we exist."


Source

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 150 

What’s it like to retire at 33?

“Every day is like a Sunday where I don’t have chores, and I have all this free time and can do what I want.”

That’s the synopsis from Justin McCurry, a Raleigh, N.C. resident who swapped life as an engineer for early retirement five years ago. Far from subsisting on rice and beans, McCurry eats “5-star meals” made from scratch at home, vacations with his family and spends time outdoors hiking and swimming.


Justin McCurry retired five years ago, at 33, as a self-made millionaire. He and his wife spent 10 years growing their investment portfolio to $1.3 million, though she continued to bring in an income and didn't fully retire until 2016. McCurry said they were able to build a solid nest egg because they had good jobs with benefits, employed smart tax strategies, maxed out their retirement savings accounts, invested, budgeted, and bought an affordable home during an auction. (He says their portfolio has since grown to over $1.7 million.)


But life in early retirement brought a bit of a shock to McCurry, who runs the blog Root of Good, which brings in some monthly income for the couple. He previously told Business Insider that he wished he knew it would take him at least six months to calm down, relax, and slow down after retiring.

"It took me at least that long to feel comfortable doing nothing," said McCurry, who most recently worked as an engineering manager earning about $69,000 before retiring.

"I felt like I had to be productive for at least part of the day," he said. "Eventually, I realized that this is the rest of my life to enjoy it! I upped the time I spent in my hammock, caught up on my Netflix queue, and read a bunch of books."


His days are a mix of fun, time outdoors, and 'a small dose of work'

To figure out how to fill up his free time (and help others do the same), McCurry created a weekly schedule for his early retirement. It's evidence that early retirement can be just as diverse as the typical workweek, if not more so. No two days for McCurry are the same, and he's found more time to indulge in things that make him happy.


"Fortunately we live in the 21st century, a glorious time filled with entertainment overload, instant digital connections, and unlimited choices of pastimes (indoors and outside)," he wrote on his blog. "Each day typically has a mix of a lot of fun, a moderate dose of physical activity, and a small dose of work."


McCurry divides his days into five categories: work, meals, physical, fun, and social. On a weekly basis, he spends roughly 7 1/2 hours with family or friends, 13 hours working (whether it's yard work or personal-finance chores), 18 hours doing some sort of physical activity, such as swimming, and 35 1/2 hours having fun, which could be planning vacations, reading, or blogging.


"Early retirement is like a full-time job where tasks consist solely of having fun and socializing," he wrote. "Everyone has their own definition of fun and their ideal level of socializing each week. I like a lot of solitary activities but also enjoy the company of other people."


Here's an example of a Friday in which he was able to incorporate all five categories into his schedule:

7:30 a.m.: Work wake up and get ready 8 a.m.: Physical walk to school and drop off his kids 8:30 a.m.: Physical walk to the park 9 a.m.: Work teach ABC's to his toddler 9:30 a.m.: Social play date with his toddler Noon: Meals lunch 1 p.m.: Work grocery shopping 2 p.m.: Work internet chores 3 p.m.: Physical walk to school to pick up the kids 3:30 p.m.: Physical adventure time, which can range from visiting the park to exploring a nature reserve 6:30 p.m.: Meals dinner 7:30 p.m.: Fun video games and Netflix

"I realized I felt happy and fulfilled when I had a whole lot of leisure activities plus a small amount of 'work' and intellectual stimulation during the week," he told Business Insider.

McCurry says he tries to spread the work out no more than an hour or two per day. He added that sometimes he gets passionate about an idea and spends a few days absorbed in a new project, such as learning Adobe Photoshop or foreign languages.

"So far I haven't experienced any boredom in early retirement," he wrote on his blog. "But if I do, my first action will be to search for new activities to jump into."

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 231 

'How can you tell being an entrepreneur is right for you?'

I had asked my sister while she happily talked about how much fashion designing suits he charisma.

She rolled her eyes at me and said, 'Because I am an undertaker'. She clearly must have seen the shock in my face and said; 'No, not a grave-digging undertaker, but a person who undertakes risk and initiative with the end goal of financial profit'.


Even though it took me a few minutes to fully understand what she had said, I was proud of her.

She further explained that money making isn't the only motivator for entrepreneurs, but risk-taking, usually in the form of financial investments, is the underlying theme of all entrepreneurs.


So how can you tell if the life of an entrepreneur is for you? 

There are some certain traits, qualities, and values that most successful entrepreneurs share. While they don’t guarantee success, certain entrepreneurial characteristics lay a strong foundation for life of risk-taking and reward.


First and foremost, entrepreneurs value independence. They want to be their own bosses, set their own schedule, and run their own lives. They are people who dread the thought of a boss overseeing their work, although entrepreneurs have hundreds, thousands, or millions of bosses; they’re called “customers.” I mean, my sister converted into an entrepreneur because of fear of answering to a boss or showing up to an office by 8.00am and leaving by 5.00pm or later.


Entrepreneurs are self-reliant. They enjoy being responsible for their own success and take pride in building something greater than themselves.


They must also be able to handle risk. If the thought of not getting paid on a regular basis, failing to sell your product, or simply falling flat on your face frightens you to paralysis, you may have difficulty dealing with the up-and-down nature of entrepreneurship.


Due to the higher levels of risk, long-lasting entrepreneurs are also frugal. Despite popular culture telling us that entrepreneurs are popping champagne and cruising on expensive yachts, most business owners are savers, not spenders. This was highlighted by the research of Dr. Thomas Stanley and published in The Millionaire Next Door (1996), which found that most millionaires in the world are owners of small businesses (not lawyers, doctors, or bankers) and they are habitual savers. 81% of them purchase their vehicles instead of leasing, and 90% of those who do purchase spent less than $45,000. The book may need updating, but it shows the ever-important need for frugal living as an entrepreneur.


If you're all of these listed above, then go ahead and fit that boss crown on your head.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 209 

Entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of the world economy.

They own and operate everything from small grocery stores to digital startups. No matter what the size and scope, there are entrepreneurs behind every business and private company in the country!

Examples of what I mean by entrepreneurs stalking every business corner: McDonald’s was founded by an entrepreneur. Facebook was built by an entrepreneur. Coca Cola was launched by an entrepreneur.  Dangote Group was built by a business guru. Name a famous company, and there was/is an entrepreneur behind it.

With all the financial plus sides of being an entrepreneur, there are enormous risks that they take almost blindly. My uncle's business risks gave me more nightmares than it gave him. Thinking about it now, I don't think he was a bit troubled with the scary fact that he had put in N250 million into a smoothie business. For all the hopeful things to invest so much in, he chose a dying smoothie business. I had nightmares, I fell ill, I lost my appetite, I became depressingly skinner than usual. My dad was angry with me, in fact, everyone was angry with me. Why is it even affecting you? They had asked. I would hang my head low and tottle out like I was high on depression. 

I had convinced my uncle into investing in the business but I only asked for N250,000, not N250 million. 'If you want to invest, do it well', he had told me. So imagine my fear and worry.

Fast forward to 2 years later, his investment renovated the company giving him 900 million units of shares in the company that has now opened branches in 6 different Nigerian states.

I am sure there a lot of other scary risk-taking stories out there but Elon Musk motivated this tale.

Elon Reeve Musk FRS (born June 28, 1971) is a technology entrepreneur, investor, and engineer. He holds South African, Canadian, and U.S. citizenship and is the founder, CEO, and lead designer of SpaceX; co-founder, CEO, and product architect of Tesla, Inc.; co-founder and CEO of Neuralink; founder of The Boring Company; co-founder and co-chairman of OpenAI; and co-founder of PayPal. Phew!!


In December 2016, he was ranked 21st on the Forbes list of The World's Most Powerful People. As of June 2019, he has a net worth of $18.2 billion and is listed by Forbes as the 58th-richest person in the world.

Elon had $180 million after the Paypal acquisition before he dived into the deep blue sea of investments. He put $100 million into Space-X, $70 million into Tesla and $10 million into Sollar City. With all his capital gone, Elon had to borrow money for rent.

But with all of these investments and sleepless nights, Elon is currently a business magnate and the wealthiest South-African billionaire by net worth!!


Tell a tale!

What risk have you taken? Did it pay off? 

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 236 

Tact and diplomacy are skills centered around an understanding of other people and being sensitive to their opinions, beliefs, ideas, and feelings. 

Effective use of such skills comes from being able to sense accurately what another person is feeling or thinking at any given time and then responding in such a way as to avoid bad feelings or awkwardness, whilst at the same time asserting or reflecting your own ideas and feelings back in a delicate and well-meaning fashion.


All people and all communication situations are unique.  Developing effective tact and diplomacy skills requires practice and good judgment.  These skills are not limited to use in formal communications, such as in the workplace: tact and diplomacy are also important when developing and maintaining friendships, romantic relationships, and relationships in the family.


STRATEGIES FOR TACT AND DIPLOMACY

Understanding what is the most appropriate behavior and in any given situation can be problematic; this is due to the unpredictable nature of communication and of human relations generally.


Sometimes the most appropriate action may be to withhold your opinion, or it may be possible to introduce an idea, or favored outcome, in such a way that the other person can take ownership of it.  In other situations it may be best to take a direct stance, stating exactly what you want and how you intend to achieve it.


We all know people who are capable of talking their way out of difficult situations or who are more likely to be successful at negotiating.  Although a certain amount of luck may be attributed to isolated incidents, long-term success is based on strong communication skills, planning, self-control, confidence, and emotional intelligence.


The following strategies are designed to help you think about how you can plan for and use tact and diplomacy effectively:


When you’re planning a potentially difficult conversation you should first focus on knowing what you want to achieve: what is your favored outcome?


Write it down and think about your reasons. Try to take a step back from your personal opinions and think about the facts surrounding the situation.


See our page Communicating in Difficult Situations for more.


Consider and write down what the objections might be from others.


Think carefully about your answers to their concerns; demonstrate that you have considered their opinions or arguments.


Do not enter into negotiations in an angry or stressed way. 


Try to remain calm and keep an open mind. Find out the facts, as well as what is and what is not possible before you react.


When communicating, listen to what the other person (or people) has to say.


Watch for non-verbal communication, such as body language, and their tone of voice to help you understand their message.  Hold back your own opinions and ideas until you have had the chance to understand the other person point-of-view, and then plan your responses carefully to fit with the feedback you are receiving.


Negotiate. 


If what you seek is in conflict with the other person’s ideas, you may have to discuss how sacrifices can be made to provide a better result for both of you in the long run.  Mutual sacrifice is usually seen as more favorably than one-sided sacrifice.  Aim to reach a compromise which results in a win-win situation.


Strengthen your argument by offering time-scales of when you foresee the benefit of your proposals being reached.


Be precise in giving figures and dates. Favor logic and fact over personal opinion. Have something written or drawn out in advance, if it helps.


If possible turn statements into questions.  Rather than directly voicing your opinion, turn your statement into a question for the other person to think about. 


This not only leads somebody to think along the same lines as you but also makes room for discussion of what interests you and what may potentially benefit both parties.  This is particularly useful if you are not entirely sure what you are able to achieve or exactly what is needed to overcome a problem.  This strategy often allows for more exploration of options – a more open approach than just stating your opinion.


If the conversation gets heated, try to give yourself room to respond in ways that help rather than inflame a situation.


If you can, catch yourself at the moment your gut reaction wants to take over: take a breath and give yourself time. Tell the other person that you need to think about what they just said, rather than feel obliged to answer immediately. 


Take control of a situation rather than becoming out of control and risk saying or doing something you may later regret. Taking control of social situations in a way that leaves both parties feeling comfortable with the outcome is an important part of showing tact and diplomacy.


Keep an eye on the prize! 


Keep your preferred outcome in mind, try not to get distracted, go off on a tangent or get bogged down in irrelevant details.  Remember to be assertive – being tactful and diplomatic does not mean bowing to pressure or giving up on what you want.

Source.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 253 

Have you heard or business plans? You most definitely have and it's sad to think that most new businesses these days jump straight into chasing very short term income than making plans that would land them huge winnings and better investors.

This is why a lot of people have continuously argued that Business plans are dead — or are they? For many entrepreneurs, the business plan is an outmoded document that gets created mainly for the benefit of VCs and bank loan officers. Bootstrappers rarely think they need one to get by. They need it, we all do.

But the fact is that a business plan — even just a one-pager with a few financial projections — can be a valuable internal tool.  A roadmap for even the smallest or earliest-stage idea. It can foster alignment, set the tone for the business and even help you craft your brand messaging.  While thinking up a mad business idea start-up, keep in check that you'd be needing a well-written business plan. 


Top 5 reasons why you need a business plan

1. To avoid big mistakes: The last thing you want to do is work on your start-up for a year, only to realize you were doomed to fail from the start. Many founders learn the hard way that they didn't set aside enough capital to reach their goals, took on partners with the wrong skills and resources, or don't have a viable way to make money. Developing and sharing a business plan can help ensure that you're sprinting down the right path.


2. To counterbalance your emotions: At times during your start-up experience, you'll be manic—so passionate about your ideas you lose sight of reality. At other times, you'll be overwhelmed by doubt, fear, or exhaustion. When your emotions get the best of you, having a business plan lets you step back, and take an objective look at what you are doing and why what you know for a fact and what you are trying to figure out.


3. To make sure everyone's on the same page: Chances are, you are not building a company by yourself. Ideally, you'll have partners, so you can launch faster, smarter, and with less need to pay employees or suppliers. Even if you don't have partners, you'll have family, friends, and advisers involved. A business plan helps get everyone involved in your start-up heading in the same direction.


4. To develop a game plan: At a start-up, execution is everything. That means you have to set priorities, establish goals, and measure performance.  You also need to identify the key questions to answer, like "What features do customers really want?," "Will customers buy our product and how much will they pay?," and "How can we attract customers in a way that's cost-effective and scalable?"  These are all things you'll address during the business planning process.


5. To raise capital. If you raise or borrow money—even from friends and family—you'll need to communicate your vision in a clear, compelling way. A good business plan will help you do just that. An October 2007 study by Babson College found that start-ups with a business plan raised twice as much capital as those without a business plan within the first 12 months.

Read More
time posted  comments 0    views 231 
Blueprint T.V
View All Post    
Latest Posts
Latest Tweets
Tweet Us     
Blueafric Media
Ogwugo market
LILBURN FITNESS CENTER ENUGU
Lilburn Product
Lilburn Spa
Lilburn Loyalty Reward Card