Have you been looking for a job as a fresh graduate or you need to augment your income? Then permit me to be a harbinger of good news to you. You have probably heard, read or even seen it before, but I want to lend my voice to the ones you have heard before now.

This is an inspiration I got from one young man, a resource person at a seminar I attended recently. Kolawole Jayeoba is a walking inspiration; every aspect of his life is inspiring. Maybe outlining a little bit about this guy will improve our appreciation of the issue at hand.

At age seven, yes, 7, Kolawole had delved into the business of buying and selling kerosene. According to him, in his village then, people had to travel very far to get to the petrol station. Seeing this need, he went about filling it. He began to buy kerosene in large quantity form this petrol station to come sell in his village, can you beat that? When he was narrating this, my mind travelled back to what I was doing at that age, you don’t even want to know.

By the time Kola was in the university, he was a real business man, anything marketable, from Our Daily Manna booklet to powdered/packaged beans, he was into them. That did not stop him from graduating as one of the best students in his department.

From his NYSC orientation camp in Imo state, he had already started looking for needs to fill and that was how before he finished his one year youth service programme, he had acquired a full functional business centre/cyber café, mentored and taught students on ICT, while doing other businesses, including organizing corporate trainings, even for cleaners!

Now, still within the age range of late twenties to early thirties, your guess is as good as mine on how far Kola has gone in life. He is already an employer of labour, married and living in his own house in the FCT, not an easy feat if you are a youth from a poor background in this country.

What did I learn from this encounter with Mr. Kolawole?

  1. Opportunities are everywhere, if only we can open our business minds and put on our thinking caps. For instance, the business centre he acquired was situated opposite his place of primary assignment. When he noticed that the place was always locked, he asked around and before you know it, he had met with the owner who he convinced to let him run it. When the business began to boom, the owner decided to sell it to him. It is time to look around us and find that need to fill in our immediate community.
  1. Passion! We often get asked what our hobbies and talents are, discovering what one is passionate about is a step to self-discovery, a step to financial freedom. The good book said that our talent will make a way for us, is that not why God gave us those talents in the first place? If you love talking, organize seminars, training on topics you are comfortable with. Talk your way into success instead of talking away your time. If you are good at creating things, the world is under your feet because there is no limit to what you can do, just find a niche for yourself. If you do not yet know what you are good at, what you love doing and can do effortlessly – ask your friends, parents, siblings. That maybe where your destiny lies.
  1. Huge capital is not a sine qua non to financial freedom, that can come as you expand. I was challenged by some of the students, even secondary school students that attended the seminar. They were already running their own small businesses. There are businesses that I learnt one can start with little or no capital. Kolawole narrated to us how he started organizing corporate training for cleaners that work in corporate world like banks and hospitals as a corps member. All he did was walk up to the ogas at the top, convince them of the need to train not just their high ranking staff, but even the cleaners. Funny enough, he had nothing spectacular to teach them, just attitude, work ethics, motivation and the works but he raked in his money and even got offers to do supplies for these organisations. There’s nothing wrong with little beginnings friends.

Lest I begin to bore you, let me rest my case with these summations:

  1. ACTION! The fruit comes from action, doing not just hearing. You can read this through, listen to the best motivational speakers, but without immediate action on what you learnt, it becomes a waste of precious time. Do not prevaricate and procrastinate, act now, start from where you are, what do you have in your hand? Start with it NOW! You will be surprised what turns up as you begin to put the knowledge you have gathered into action.
  1. Do not let fear or small, discouraging minds deter you. They will arise, often too, but you just cannot let them distract you, no way. Rather seek out people of great minds that will encourage and mentor you.
  1. Tame your mind. I have found out that this is one of the hardest tasks to undertake. Our minds are restless, and stubborn, likes to go where it will. To get it to focus on a particular thing at a time is hard but not impossible. It is in focusing that we are able to notice opportunities around us, think up ways to go about it and all what not. Taming the mind is another positive step in self-knowledge and self-improvement. There is no limit to what the mind can achieve if properly tamed. The Bible said that we should guard our minds for out of it flows the good things of life. I recommend this book, BATTLEFIELD OF THE MIND by Joyce Meyer, a great help in this area.

With that out of the way, I rest my case. But I must commend Kolawole Jayeoba for inspiring us, Innocent Idoko and his crew at the Noble Innocent Foundation for organizing this life changing seminar. God bless you guys real good.NIF