BOLANLE, YOU DO NOT NEED CAPITAL
In 2017, when I held my first webinar, A newbie anchoring a session crowded with over 200 entrepreneurs. Some who had been in business since as far back as 2000 when I was a young chap, I dared to talk on something crazy & kinda controversial: YOU DON’T NEED CAPITAL TO START A BUSINESS. It was one way to drag the attention, but I knew just what I was going to say. And it was worth it in the end.
My strong point anchored on starting out and doing as much as you can with as little as you have. I shared that it was a breakthrough. Frankly, I was fed up with having people give the ‘no money’ thing as the excuse for what seemed to be mostly apprehension. Let me break it down. A while before I had that webinar, I set out to go fully into online business. To push businesses online, as a social media manager.
What I could have done is, make a list like this:
HP Laptop — N150,000
Workspace — N150,000 per year
Good smartphone — N70,000
Tab — N35,000
Total — N405,000
Then, I would have sat in my rocking chair grinning to myself and biting my lips and telling everyone I came across that if I only had N405,000 I would build a 7 figure income company in one year. Lol. But that’s not what I did.
I had an Infinix Phone with a shattered or mildly put, cracked screen. Infinix Hot 2.
That was all I had. Okay no… I had my brain. I had my notepad. I had my determination. I had my attitude of ridiculing and disdaining things I could not have.
All I did, and all the money I made was with that Infinix phone. I used it from late 2016 till March 2018. Then I got a better phone. Two months after, a dear Facebook friend impressed by my efforts, sent me a sweet HP laptop.
The idea here is simple.
Before you think you need capital, be sure you really do.
As long as you have a big dream before your eyes, it doesn’t matter how small you start out. I’ll say it one last time, even though the rest of this article could counter it:
You don’t need capital to start a business!!!
MONEY IS LIKE DUST. IT’S EVERYWHERE.
If you need N300,000 to start a business today, understand that a man living in the same city with you spent 1million on Champagne he didn’t drink, in a night club on Friday.
Think about that.
If you need 7 million to start a company you think will shake the world, do you remember the price of the car Davido bought for Chioma?
The first mind orientation you must build is that the money you need is in the hands of people. And it is.
People have money. Don’t think they don’t.
And people are willing to invest money. Don’t you dare think they aren’t.
The greatest fear of a man who has money is the fear of going broke. So why would he not want to invest?
Someone has 100million naira right now, looking for something to invest in.
But why won’t he just give you?
In my final year, I encountered a classmate who sold books passionately. I used him to build my library a bit. I love books. Being busy lately has been taking me away from books. Very painful.
I bought Myles Munroe, and a couple of others.
When the year was winding down, I got talking with him and asked questions about how the book business was. I was gaining interest. I wanted to sell books. He told me all. Luckily, Benin is the hub of books.. So books were way cheaper. (I schooled in UNIBEN)
The bookshop required I pay N30,000 and then pick as many books as I wanted for half the price until the 30k was covered. But 30k was the minimum.
I was excited.
That was how I stayed at home for months, seeking 30k to start a business. Looking at me now, one would hardly believe 30k actually kept me stuck at a time.
The excitement led way to frustration.
Someone close to me had the dough. He could easily do a 32k transfer to my account while he sat in his office one afternoon. But why wouldn’t he?
I wasn’t convincing enough.
And if I was in his shoes, I don’t know, but I probably wouldn’t have given me. In my very eyes, Prime Mobile Bookstore dream crumbled.
Nobody willingly throws money away. People are stingy naturally. They will always look for an excuse not to give. And “you are not serious” is the most common excuse, if you let them.
Your convincingness (permit me to create my own word) drains out their fear.
CONVINCE, YOU HUMAN!
You must calm down your excitement.
Its normal to be excited about an idea.. Matter of fact, it is a failure from the beginning — an idea you are not excited about.
But calm it down. Your potential investor doesn’t share your sentiments.
As you shake your lips to form words, two words run through their minds — “Profit?”, “ Loss?”
They are not bought over by things that look too easy. They want to hear you talk about the full process.
The downsides that could come up…
The misfortunes that may come…
How you will handle the misfortunes…
Then most importantly, they want you to sing the profit they will make into their ears.
“What’s in it for me?” (WII-FM, the radio station every human listens to) is a constant question in their mind.
Answer it extensively.
Present your stuff with such maturity. Leveling excitement, and showing confidence.
Most times they don’t really get to listen to what you say. They check how you say it. They watch your attitude. Your maturity.
They take you through a litmus test, to see if you can handle and sail through greatness.
From your words, they know if you can or can’t.
You must have constructively thought about all the worst case scenarios and how you dealt with all of them.
Business is not Ewa Agoyin.
There are downsides.
And the reactive entrepreneur is not always successful. He is often ruined.
It is the proactive one that wins.
Calculate all the odds and evens, and communicate it all to your potential investor.
It’s a psychological game.
If you do this, you will break defenses more.
If an investor rejects, meet another, and another.
Until you’ve met at least 50, don’t complain of failure.
And if you’ve met 50 and gotten rejections, meet just one more, and maybe one more.
Sincerely, I doubt you’ll meet up to 10 before you’ll get your big break if you follow through with this…
WHO IS AN INVESTOR, AND CAN I FIND ONE UNDER MY BED?
Let’s find out who an investor is.
You are a potential investor.
If you invest 1k into your little nephew’s stick sweet business, you are an investor.
Anyone who has money is a potential investor.
I think much of the issue is, we over complicate things.
The person who will give you the funds you need could be;
•Your old classmate
•Your younger sister
•The Man who drives a Rav4 in your street and raises so much dust.
•The business woman across the street
•Someone you just met today.
As long as he can give you the money you need, and you can convince him, you are game!
Don’t look too far.
Meet every capable person.
This is not a plea for money. No!
Its a call on the person to help you, so you can help him too. Mutual aid.
Ain’t nothing to be ashamed of!
Capital should really never be an issue for any entrepreneur.
There is something called OPI & OPM
Other People’s Idea
Other People’s Money.
Means: Some people have nothing but ideas.
Some people have nothing but money.
As long as you can have enough sense to find the one with the one you lack, you are in business.
Have a sensible agreement though.
The one that doesn’t choke you and take everything in the long run.
But also be smart enough to know that as long as you have ideas only, you will always need someone who has money.
And boy, ain’t they everywhere?
A little tip would be to ensure to have a network that encompasses at least some wealthy folks.
If this article meets you well, you can send me an email to hail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for reading.