Hello! So #2 of my 2 random experiences and 1 thing they taught me series is here. This is quite a long read lol so brace yourselves ❤️. Also I know I said one lesson but I shared seven haha, read below!
This occurred about 18 months ago when I just started my eyewear business. I started my business with close to zero capital as I didn’t want anyone else involved and I had no money of my own lol. So I was struggling and building it from the bottom and it was going fine. However I still felt I needed the extra push, money wise. I wasn’t going to tell my family members about it because first off, they didn’t want me selling glasses, they just wanted me to go to uni and come out (as with most Nigerian parents). So I was stuck with working with very little money and I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy. As luck would have it, I reunited with an old friend of mine who I met in my Uni before he graduated and while I was talking of wanting more capital, he was talking of wanting to invest in a business. Funny enough, I was suggesting businesses he could invest in while totally forgetting mine lool. Thankfully he brought up the idea of investing in mine, then me giving him a certain percentage… you know how it goes. I was so excited like “yass I’m finally liberated”. So of course I agreed. He came up with the money and I ordered for the glasses, did the product shoots etc. At this point you’re probably expecting my fairytale ending but nope 😂. It was a disaster because while I had stock, I didn’t have enough customers or online presence. I mean I was only just starting. Sales were really slow and somehow the money wasn’t just adding up. He started asking for his money (only right) and I didn’t have enough. I also couldn’t tell my family members about it because I didn’t know how they would take in the fact that I went so far as to be indebted to someone. They probably would have paid and asked me to stop totally which I wouldn’t be able to bear. So I started saving and pushing extra hard on every platform I sold on (payporte and jiji included). Eventually I got the capital back and paid him but I never gave him the expected returns. I thank God he was understanding about it and it’s a massive joke to us now. And looking back now, I’ve realized that although the partnership didn’t work out as planned, it was a major ladder in building my audience and customer base so I’ll forever be thankful for that experience. And yes my family members got to find out many months after when I told them but it was all jokes.
What I Learnt:
1) Dear startups, don’t be too quick to hop into a partnership. Weigh all options carefully before deciding to go into one. You just might be setting yourself up.
2) There’s nothing wrong with starting from the bottom. Eventually that’s what I had to do, I learnt to work with the resources I had and everything turned out right. But please bear in mind that you have to work hard and smart.
3) Consistency really works. Just keep pushing but strive to do better. Don’t just push on one spot, push further!
4) Do you until the world comes around. I never actually believed my family members would come around to the idea of me mixing school with business but as soon as they started seeing positive results, sure they did. I’ve come to realize that it takes a lot to satisfy Nigerian parents, so if it’s going to take you a lot to be allowed to chase your dreams, then by all means try.
5) Moving without God is the quickest way to set yourself up. Guys, in anything you’re doing, please involve God. There are a million miracles, tiny and big, that you would encounter if you work with him. Always put him first and best believe things would work out for you.
6) It’s important to plan. Map out your work scheme and stick to it. There’s no point toiling and having nothing to show for it, you must achieve your goals one step after another and the best way to even realize when you’re doing that is by planning. And by planning how to make your money, you’re also going to plan how to spend wisely.
7) Never compare your process to that of another person. Comparison leads to unnecessary pressure and trust me you don’t need that. For me it’s pray, work hard, tick off everything from my to-do list of the day and chill. As long as you’ve done your own part, everything would work out fine (emphasis on working hard and smart of course).
And that’s it! I hope you learnt something useful from this post guys!
Thanks for joining me today, don’t forget to follow me and share with your friends! xxx