No one understands entrepreneurship than Ibukun Awosika. This is due to the fact that she is not just an observer rather; she has always played big in the entrepreneurship world. Born as Bilikisu Abiodun Moturayo in December 24, 1962 in Ibadan, South West of Nigeria. Ibukun Awosika is a Nigerian business magnate, author and motivational speaker. She is the first female Chairman of one of the biggest banks in Nigeria, First Bank Nigeria PLC.
She is an authority in business and entrepreneurship generally whose business advice should be taken serious by entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs across the globe based on her business acumen. Below are some of the fundamental questions she says must be answered if you want to succeed as an entrepreneur.
What business do you want to do?
Do you even know the business?
Have you empowered yourself to make the right decisions?
Have you done due diligence…and this is not about asking your friends for their opinion.
After selling your products to family and friends, how can your business idea become commercially viable?
What pricing and evaluation models can work for your business?
As you go along in your business, it is foolish to not understand the numbers.
Invest in yourself.
There is nothing wrong with not knowing, but you have to have the courage to ask someone to teach you.
Go to Business School: If you can’t afford it, attend business workshops and trainings.
You might think you are smart, but really, what do you know? ,We are all smart, but we don’t know everything. If you think about how many different topics exist, you will realize that you don’t know a lot.
I’m always in school, I spend what people use to buy houses to go to school.
If everybody is deceiving you, do not deceive yourself, nobody knows where you are going but you. You owe it to yourself to invest in yourself.
After you invest in yourself, the knowledge is yours, and you will find yourself in places you don’t feel you are qualified for.
What am I doing on the board of a bank? I am a Carpenter. My first degree was in Chemistry.
It is your responsibility to empower yourself with information that can help you.
Be honest with yourself and identify what your gaps are.
Invest in yourself.
This is what will separate you from the crowd.
Another thing you should note, is that it is important to treat people right. This is how I have gone so far without bribery. I treat people with kindness, such that they do things for me out of love instead of “a cut”.
Everybody from the gateman, to the house keeper, to the driver, to the secretary to the oga…everybody. It is the gateman you are nice to, that will open the gate for you and find parking for you when you are late to a meeting. It is because I have help at home, that is why I can be here today.
I have delegated some responsibilities, and hence I can have time to focus on what I know how to do best.
If I did not delegate these tasks to other people, and if I did not treat the people who were helping me out well, I would have to do everything by myself.
Human beings in your life are very valuable.
By yourself, you are limited. Everybody doing something in your life is valuable. You lose when you think that you are the most important person in the room. The way you make people feel affects the extent to how they can help you achieve your potential.
Show care for people
Be kind to people.
If you work with artisans (tailors, carpenters, etc), Be kind but firm.
Be firm, but just.
Don’t become a fool, be firm but nice.
When you are fair, people will fight for you the day you make a hard decision.
I have fired a whole factory before. I was younger than my staff and I was equally pregnant. They decided not to show up at work on one day and we had a deadline.
I found other carpenters to complete the work during the weekend and by the time they showed on Monday, their sack letters were waiting at the gate.
Do not let anyone despise you because of your age and gender.
Keep your word
If you give your word to your customer, keep it.