Startups

Startup Advice: Nigeria is not US, UK, or China.

Let me start by quoting Winston Churchill.

“Never give in, never give in, never, never, never give in. Nithjng , great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense. Never yield to force, never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”
From a realistic view point, every successful entrepreneur or startup must have failed one way or the other in the past before they finally break even.
If you want to be successful as well, start having deep conversations with successful entrepreneurs. You would be astonished that many of them went through many obstacles in scaling their businesses.
Nigeria is a different environment when compared to developed countries like the U.K. US and China where there are to a large extent the support structure and the enabling environment.
I repeat, Nigeria is not US where everything is in place. I cited US because they have recorded a huge success when it comes to scaling businesses or raising the most successful entrepreneurs. Always have that in mind. What works there would be a complete fiasco in Nigeria. You have to develop that Nigerian template rather than fine-tuning the American startup template.
More importantly, being an entrepreneur is absolutely different from being a business owner. In most cases you being a business owner doesn’t require you to have so much intellectual resources or knowledge. But a real entrepreneur is like an embodiment of knowledge because with that, you are able to scale quickly.
Arguably, there isn’t a perfect template to succeed in the entrepreneurial space. What you call a perfect template could turn out to be a failed template to another person. That doesn’t mean, there aren’t certain step-by- step actions which automatically sets your feet to the ground as an entrepreneur.
I will unequivocally state that working with mentors is a great deal in a country like Nigeria because it is rare. Yes, it is rare in practicality, forget the hype. Many entrepreneurs aren’t willing to have mentors, while mentors on the other hand are too busy. Unless they will have something to gain in the long run which isn’t bad in my view. The primary goal is to get the job done. It’s called quid pro quo.
The message here is that startups or entrepreneurs should exert that willingness to work with mentors who have been through that same process in many different ways. While there may be skepticism, just take that bold step of seeking the right mentorship.
It’s cool if you fail in the process. You will learn from it and devise a better strategy going forward. You can’t get everything right at the begining. In some cases, you are going to even waste resources doing things that doesn’t make sense. It’s part of the learning process.
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