Episode 6 here
My name is Tomisin Ajiboye. My life is a story of one grain of sand, a life of seeking and finding and further exploration. Always seeking the lost bite of Steve Job’s apple.
I started my career as a graphic designer. No business training. No business experience. But I had a burning desire to get out on my own. When I wanted to start my first company, I had no idea how to do it. I had very little or no money so my goal was to find ways to build a business organically, with little or no investment.
I used to go to my church library and check out a handful of business books every few weeks to learn as much as I could. There were books on incorporating, accounting, advertising, marketing, management, and many other topics. Every book on marketing said that the number one way to get new customers is to get referrals from existing customers. How does one get a referral from a customer who has never existed?
Let me tell you how I went about it. I went on google to find someone in Nigeria that is doing what I had in mind, fortunately for me, I got someone and I began to follow his works on social media. I practically followed him on every medium he has ever visited. He was my role model and a mentor, he does not even know about it himself. That was over 5 years ago, any time I look back now, I always smile back to the days of no/little beginning.
When I was asked to write for this column, I thought it would be an honour to share some of the wrong and right choices I have made in life. To be candid, life has not been beds of roses neither have I seen or have anything free. There is always a price to be paid.
When I left school, I thought it was going to be easy and things would work out well and fine. I thought I wouldn’t have to work for anyone in life but just to start my thing and start making money, I didn’t think of experiences, I didn’t think of mistakes, I didn’t think of leverages, I had no wisdom for sustaining relationships. Guess what, I messed it all up. I made wrong choices on my network.
Sometimes, it require wisdom to know when to give up, I made my first right choice to go in search of myself first. I gave up on my mission of travelling solo; it was too mechanical and rough. Then I knew that, if I don’t give up I might die not near trying. I didn’t have to search for a job; one was already waiting for me, the post of a business development manager in a graphic design and photography company. I did not undertake any form of interview or submit any credentials to anyone. It was a result of trying to run my company with my empty head that I was discovered. I knew it was not my destination, I know I am where I am going and this was not near it at all.
I worked in the capacity for another 4 months before I decided to go for an internship under a mentor of mine. I changed location, I needed to learn “how to” and many other managerial skills. I spent two years with him without a salary, but it was truly rewarding. The best choice I ever made in my life was going for the internship, all the skills and leverages I thought I lacked in the beginning are within my grasp and I fanned and sharpen them during this period.
The journey is still far, there is so much to be done, roads to travel, relationships to be made. Life is beautiful if we don’t complicate it for ourselves. I made my mistakes aside businesses and I suffered for it. But I will never play it safe, I don’t want to work within my comfort, the best way to see the city ahead is to be in the middle of the river.
Your story may not be exactly like mine, my advice is for you to take a bold step to get the necessary instruments to prepare for the war ahead. You really need to prepare but being successful quickly in anything you set your mind at requires God’s help with directions. You need God!!!
If I ever had another opportunity here, I will tell you how I messed up with relationships and money. For now, take all you could here and leave the rest for others.
We hope @tomisinajiboye will continue next week to give us the full gist of the “messed ups” and how he was able to clean the mess. Special thanks to you all.
Every Thursday is “Life n Choices.
Every Saturday is “Faith Series”.
We will be a year old come January next year and will be appreciating people who are the inspiration for this blog after God. I love you all.