See the Role of Entrepreneurship on Wealth Creation in Nigeria. If you want to be rich, work for yourself, this mantra and many others is what drives entrepreneurs, simply put, an entrepreneur is in the business of wealth creation. Entrepreneurship is synonymous with the acquisition of skills, for some it is being self employed, for some others it is the marketing of a product or a skill, truly all these have element of entrepreneurship, but entrepreneurship is much wider than this.
Someone once defined entrepreneurship as solving problems in the community using entrepreneurial skills. So who is an entrepreneur? This is one who identifies problems, sees them as opportunities, thereby solving the problems and creating financial reward for him and investors in the end. So first is the identification of the challenge, allocating resources to it and creating value in form solutions to the problems, then your solutions will be paid for.
The Nigerian economy is in a recession this has seen a sharp fall in the value of the Naira and an attendant rise in the value of goods and services. Virtually every sector has been affected except for maybe those into some form of export, especially those who export agricultural produce. It is high time we took agriculture seriously as it could be a palliative in these trying times.
The “go to school and get good grades so you can get a good job” school of thought is now very obsolete, yet many Nigerians still think and expect to somehow miraculously find a job, when there is little to non available. This school of thought is the bane of many Nigerians and this has led to the mass unemployment and wide spread poverty, if entrepreneurship are not encouraged, or people don’t take it upon themselves to start something, no matter how small, the abysmal economic situation will only get worse. According to economic researches, the countries with the least enterprising spirit are amongst the poorest in the world.
1. Employment generation; One of the first problems the entrepreneur solves or attempts to solve is the problem of unemployment. If the imagined venture is able to kick off the entrepreneur will need help in running the business, this will invariably get people off the street, and if venture capital can be secured, then a bigger business will it be, which will even employ more people.
2. Training and human resource development; usually a new entrepreneur may not be able to afford highly skilled individuals in his field, therefore the need to train and retrain the new hands becomes imminent in order for him to have excellent products and services. This action alone improves the amount of skilled hands we have in our nation who can further undertake other projects.
3. Innovation; an entrepreneur a visionary, a “seer” , he or she sees opportunities and market trends before they become glaring or obsolete, therefore taking advantage of them and bringing financial rewards to both his investors and employees alike. The creation of trends also and new markets and products are so of the roles of entrepreneurs.
4. Maintenance of population density; most rural dwellers move to urban centres due to the lack of jobs and basic social amenities. If jobs are made available or some entrepreneur takes it upon himself to provide storage facilities for farming communities or cheap electricity, ( e.g. solar power, as some entrepreneurs have been able to do in the Ilaje community off the coast of Lagos), there would be less pressure to move to cities. Thereby reducing population pressure which leads to housing inflation and pressure on social amenities.
5. Wealth redistribution; when new products are created, or an entrepreneur enters into an already existing market with a better product, wealth is moved in his direction, and both investors and employees get a percentage of that.
6. Education and mentorship; Strive Masiyiwa the Chairman of Econet group uses his Facebook page as a tool for teaching and mentoring entrepreneurs all over the world. Entrepreneurial skills are not satisfactorily taught in schools (most of the teachers themselves don’t know jack about entrepreneurship), so it is the responsibility of the older and most likely more successful entrepreneurs to teach the skills, they have acquired over the years to would be entrepreneurs and new starters also . Making entrepreneurship more attractive and there will be a place to turn to when advice is needed. Entrepreneurs should educate the public on the importance of starting out their own ventures and stop depending on the government.
1. Risk taking; you must be willing to take calculated risks and stake your money on your ideas if you are to make any head way as a business owner. Make that move, don’t procrastinate.
2. Passion; without passion one cannot get investors nor run a new business profitably, passion is communicable, it can be felt. No one wants to invest in a business in which the owner doesn’t believe in, the business has failed already. Therefore you have to believe in what you do or are about to venture into. Passion will also help you to keep on, even when it seems like the chips are down.
3. Knowledge; you should know all there is to be known about the market you want to venture into, about your products it shortcomings and about your prospective clients, their buying habits, tastes e.t.c.
4. Leadership; you are the boss, therefore you should know with certainty the direction your business is headed, you should be able to set goals and plan for future expansion. Where there is no vision the people perish.
5. Building and managing an efficient team; Strive Masiyiwa says this skill is one of the most important for entrepreneurs, yet it is always over looked by starters. No man is an island, if you don’t have the skills you require or the time, you’ll have to hire others. You should be sure of the qualities you look out for, and make sure they share your most important work value.
Steve Jobs the founder and former CEO of Apple said he’d rather have 1 excellent “A” class employee who is not very loyal, than have 10 “B” class employees who are loyal. And Strive says he doesn’t care about how skilled you are, if you don’t have integrity you can’t work together. These are their yardsticks and values for team building, what are yours.
The importance of the entrepreneur cannot be over emphasized in any economy, contrary to popular opinion entrepreneurship can be learned, it is a mindset and a skill, putting yourself to work for you may just see you becoming the next Dangote or Bill Gates.
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