So the Global Entrepreneurship Summit #GES2015 comes to an end in Nairobi, Kenya.
With all the words said and written. A big question I am posing is this:
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN FOR THE MANY PEOPLE IN EMPLOYMENT?
In thinking about this several thoughts occurs to me:
1/ There are those employed professionals who have had an undying urge to step out of employment but didn’t have enough motivation to do it. They have been following the ongoings in the summit in the same way a hyena hangs around a pack of lions knowing it’s only a matter of time before they make a kill and therein it gets its meal. This group of employees will wake up with a resignation letter in heart and mind and sometimes physically to hand it in to the employer.
2/ Then there are those who have been similarly watching the #GES2015 hoping and praying that they could get themselves into the position of entrepreneurship but are held back because they are afraid of failing or afraid of succeeding, or they would really rather enjoy the fruits in the dream rather than roll up their sleeves, and do something about those dreams bearing actual fruit.
3/ Then there are those who are pretty content being employed. Steady job, steady paycheck, medical cover, retirement benefits, bonus payments, leave days and many other perks. There is absolutely nothing wrong with those who are here in this category. This group of professionals/ employees offer something that is very rare to get in employees – loyalty. Even entrepreneurs need them if what they are setting up is going to go the distance.
NB: Entrepreneurship is not for everyone and you can still be successful (a term whose meaning changes with every person – what success means for you is not what it means for me) even when employed.
With the end of the summit I would like to pinpoint a couple of things to consider as ways of benefiting:
1/ If you have what it takes, procrastinate no more. Roll up your sleeves and do what needs to get done. Your business idea is good for something or not. You will never know until you work at it; and working at it does not necessarily mean thay you quit your job to start it. It may also mean that you research on it, write a business plan, start saving towards it if you really think you can’t start without capital, build networks etc. Just get the car started and give I some motion.
2/ Evaluate your current work scenario. Can you be a workpreneuer? A person who creates and works to expand his / her employer’s business? This can be achieved in a variety of ways – increasing your current customer base, expanding your target market, contributing to the overall strategy of the company. Allow me to give an example here. It has been touted that women are the best entrepreneurs because they sow back into their communities and as such more money will be availed to them to do business. If you are a sales manager for a cooking ingredient like meat flavors used in basic vegetables, you would likely identify a local market where items are placed on the ground, you talk to the local government to build stalls which of course are branded with your ingredient and possibly appoint the ladies as sales points for the ingredient. With such an idea guess what you have done: a) increased brand visibility for your organization in the local markets; b) created a new sales channel for your sales teams; c) engaged in corporate social responsibility by improving the cleanliness of the market and hence reduce health risks for the community.
3/ Improve your skills. Growth in business comes with a demand on skill set. Knowledge, skills and opportunities are the hallways of growth for any business. Stagnant water is only good for breeding irritations and sources of irritation.
4/ If you can’t quit your day job, find effective and efficient employment for your money. There is an old cliche that I hear, “with your money and my brains we can go very far”. Much as it was used to swindle people, I think it’s a very true statement. Find a good investment that will give you some sort of returns. Shares in the stock exchange, be an angel investor / mini-venture capitalist for the right business. Your money and someone else’s brains.
A reality I have come to terms with is this: when you work for your money, you add to it and your energy is consumed. When your money works for you, in the right environment, you multiply it and both of you (your money and you) don’t get tired.
5/ Don’t give up on yourself. It’s never too late to make a change in your life. Every minute you are alive is an opportunity to turn things around for the better. As I watched the summit going on including the activity at the JKIA as the POTUS was leaving, I couldn’t help feel a tinge of sadness for myself and at some level regret. I found myself saying, I really wish I was able to move around, I could have participated in this summit because its my kind thing; I really miss travelling for business. There is sense of accomplishment I get knowing am going to do business of a certain nature. As I entertained all these thoughts, A stronger trail of thought overcame me: but this is not the end, there are still more opportunities, more summits and more to be accomplished. You just have to determine to walk the path that will lead you to those dreams.
So I encourage you in the same way. It’s time to stop dreaming and start working. Your current circumstances may have caused you to miss out on unfolding opportunities in the current timeline BUT they won’t last forever. New circumstances, New opportunities, New accomplishments, New dreams.
Whether good or bad, always remember THIS TOO SHALL PASS. No matter what life dishes out to you, it’s not permanent unless you choose for it to stay that way.