Being an entrepreneur in Nigeria can be considered as an on-the-go internship because frankly, you are bound to have a lot of struggles before you finally stabilize. There are usually many areas and risks to be taken and the Nigerian system is one that does not even help matters….it’s truly all about the survival of the fittest.


What no one tells you before you venture into entrepreneurship

Most of time, people embrace the journey of entrepreneurship for the wrong reasons such as:

  • No job opportunity
  • Becoming your own boss
  • Making more money
  • Managing your own time and so much more


As much as these reasons are wrong; those of us who have strong and valid reasons still end up in the same circle of struggles with people who start a business for the wrong reason(s). This is why it is very important to start small and grow progressively. Starting small allows you to effectively manage your processes and customers; you are able to manage risks and challenges because of their small impact and most of all, you can build consistency and structure that can be expanded on as years go by.


While we were young and studying in the university, we were mostly prepared for possible job opportunities within our course of studies and no one, absolutely no one told us what the real world would actually look like. A lot of us in entrepreneurship had to fail so many times and get it all wrong, retrace our steps and finally try to learn from our mistakes before we can get back on track. Trust me; I have only summarized some people’s many years of getting it wrong. 


Most successful entrepreneurs had a minimum of 3 years before their major big break; this means years of failing and getting back up…which isn’t a bad thing by the way, it’s just that there should be a way to avoid as many errors and pitfalls during the journey as a way to save time, money, energy and resources. Anyone who has started a business can agree with me that there were a lot of things they did daily that have nothing to do with their core competency.  Some of the things we were never told include:

  1. You will definitely work more and for longer hours 
  2. You need quite a lot more money to effectively run and manage the business
  3. There is no set path to success
  4. It will take longer time to make money as expected
  5. You will say yes to a lot of ideas and opportunities and it will run you dry until you learn to start saying No
  6. It’s okay to pay other people to get the job done
  7. You will face a lot of rejections
  8. Mentors are very necessary 
  9. Business can also be unpredictable
  10. You will be all over the place, practically doing everything and getting overwhelmed without a proper structure

The list can actually be endless but I will allow you to digest the few I just mentioned.

Enterpreneurship is not easy in Nigeria; however, the benefits are endless especially if gotten right. 

Pay to get the job done!

One key strategy that I have learnt over the years that has helped me survive the competitive market and industry in Nigeria is to outsource as many things as possible so that your energy and resources are managed. This could range from:

  1. Content Writing
  2. Social Media Marketing
  3. Graphics Creation
  4. Logistics
  5. Database Management
  6. Website Development
  7. Sales and Marketing

And much more…this allows you to focus more of your energy and resources on your core skills. 

For example, you are a fashion designer/tailor. It would get overwhelming if you are the same person:

  1. Creating designs
  2. Sourcing for materials
  3. Producing/sewing the clothes
  4. Posting on social media
  5. Delivering to your customers
  6. Collating contacts for marketing
  7. Creating content for marketing
  8. Going for events to network and secure business
  9. Following up on customers
  10. Managing your financial books


It is only a matter of time before you breakdown or focus too much on some areas while others suffer and it all crumbles in your face. You are not a machine and you are definitely not wired to do all things. 


It is only God that can do all things!

It is wise to know a bit of everything so that you are knowledgeable and can relate easily with a situation, however, you don’t have to do it all. You should outsource, employ more hands or downscale until you are able to afford paying someone to get a chunk of work off your table.

Every Business has the potential to succeed

Running a business in Nigeria can be tough but with the right strategy and structure, you have a chance to become the next Dangote. 

If you wish to join us in the entrepreneurship corner, I am happy to inform you that there is enough room for us to succeed. We have the numbers here in Nigeria and competition is actually considered very healthy (it helps you think more creatively and also gets you running) so don’t let that discourage you. Identify the industry you wish to go into and get your research properly carried out before you begin to invest money in it. 

I cannot promise you that you will get it right the first time or that you won’t lose money and probably age faster but on the long run, it would be worth it especially when you start to build and generate awesome profits consistently.

Look on the bright side; you get to create more job opportunities for other youths, contribute to the GDP of the Nation, and live a happy and fulfilled life where you can be in control of your finances, resources and every other area of your life.

The key are:

  1. Having a clear Vision
  2. Understanding the Market and Industry
  3. Offering Value 
  4. Consistency 
  5. Learn from mistakes and make better decisions
  6. Asking for help or seeking mentorship

Las las…we go all make am…don’t lose hope and focus.


Deji Morgan


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