Recent statistics from the National Bureau of Statistics indicates that unemployment is on the increase from the rate of 7.5% in the 1st quarter of the year to 8.2% in the 2nd quarter of the year. It means that the number of economically active persons, who ought to join the labour force is increasing by the day. This unemployment leads to poverty, which is socially undesirable.

Conversely, entrepreneurship lifts people out of poverty and contributes to the social wealth of the community. A successful entrepreneur is a voice and powerful influence in his/her community. Young people are encouraged to go into business rather than wait endlessly for job openings which may take ages to come.

Running a small business

Over 80% of businesses started in Nigeria qualify as small businesses. I thought this phenomenon was peculiar to Nigeria, however, as an avid follower of CNN’s Inside Africa, I have come to assume that most businesses in Africa are small [See definition of Small business].

You need discipline

The first law to being successful in business is self-discipline. As a start-up entrepreneur, your employees are most likely to be under 50 people. In most cases, the entrepreneur is also a self-employed worker/CEO in his/her business. Thus, I cannot over-emphasize discipline at this point.

  • If you want your staff to start at 08:00, you must set the example. If the worker knows that the owner comes at 10:00 or 11:00, there is the tendency for them to report by 09:30 and the entrepreneur would have lost valuable work hours over time.
  • If you want your staff to observe financial discipline, you must lead by example. Don’t dip your fingers into company funds at will.
  • If you want your employees to be customer-friendly, you must set the pace by treating your personnel with utmost respect.

There is so much more we can add to this topic of self-discipline, but I’ll leave it here for now. Until I return…