How To Make Money In Nigeria: The Three Main Ways It Is Done
If you been following my blog for a while, I have often spoken about there been different ways, roads or alternatives to success here in Nigeria.
I want to spend some time now clearly defining what does roads are for you.
There is a path for everyone meaning no matter at what level of education you find yourself or even if you have none there is a way.
I will like to add that this is very much an opinion piece as well. What I am trying to do as always is to get you thinking for yourself.
So that you, can fashion out a way that will lead you to the success that you desire.
So, take what you read here simply as a template or a guide. It is not cast in stone.
You may add, subtract mix or even come up with something entirely new. Ready? Go! Read on and find out how to make money in Nigeria.
The traditional Educational Way
You know this path quite well. You pass through primary, secondary and finally into an institution of higher education and leave with a graduate certification.
Despite the fact that our institutions of higher learning in Nigeria are not at the standard we would like them to be, they are still the best and only way to certain kind of careers.
The easiest ones I can think of are medicine, engineering, law and education.
So if these are the kind of jobs you have set your mind on you will have to pass through the four walls of such institutions.
To get in you would require your standard 5 credits from subjects taken from the secondary school usually including Mathematics and English and then pass whatever exam is required to get in usually JAMB.
I will quickly add here that there are also other options aside JAMB you can use to get in such as pre -degrees, diplomas etc.
So no need to get hung up on JAMB alone.
In fact, there are even some universities that don’t require JAMB at all. So do you research and find an option that works for you.
Now, what challenges can you expect? Well, you need to pass and pass well especially if you are targeting specific careers.
This is something you can do if you immerse yourself very well in your studies.
There are usually over one million candidates who sit for JAMB annually, unfortunately, our universities can only take about five hundred thousand. So the competition is tight.
Now, cheating your way through is a bad idea. You know that right?
You learn nothing and businesses recruit only people who have the knowledge and can do the job.
Eventually, you will be found out because you cannot give what you do not have.
So apply yourself so you can repeat the benefits.
Finances maybe you’re next challenge once you gain admission.
I will be doing a separate blog post on that. After a bit more research.
But what I will say for now is where there is a will there will be a way and that is the mindset you must have.
My husband told me that it was the money that was sprayed at his sister’s wedding that was gathered and used to buy his JAMB form.
Poor or not so financially stable people do find ways to chase dreams if they determined. Be determined and a way will open up for you.
Your next major hurdle is the job Market. The reality here is that the market is packed full of graduates and there are simply not enough jobs. So the competition is fierce.
I have already written two articles that will hopefully increase your chances of landing your dream job. You can read how to beat the other 30 million applicants and how to win at the latest jobs in Nigeria.
Now let’s look at the advantage of passing through a higher institution.
Universities and its likes equip with you a broad range of skills. Skills that are so diverse and useful that it easy for graduates to be employed in fields other than the ones they graduated in.
Such skills include creativity, communication, ability to analysis, presentation and critical thinking.
Now you understand why there is the graduate trainee recruitment in almost every field.
These are skill sets that grant you the ability to learn and do almost anything.
Graduates are considered teachable, flexible and mouldable.
Passing through the university exposes you to the world too. You are far more aware of what is going on around you and the possibilities and opportunities that are out there. And almost no knowledge is beyond your reach.
Above all, you can easily pick any other path to success. For example, you can decide to start a business right out from university rather than get a job.
Out of all the options, this is the one that makes it easy for you to try or move to other paths.
Internship or Apprenticeship:
“In school, I could see my teacher in worn and often shabby clothes and at the same time, I could see the well-dressed businessmen of Donsunnu Street, the heart of business in Lagos then. It was easy for me to choose business life .”
This quote by Industrialist Rasqa Okoya the owner of Eleganza Industries and is a powerful testament to the Internship or Apprenticeship system to success. You can find out more about him here biography of Rasaq Akanni Okoya.
His formal education stopped at primary school.
But it was more than enough for him to use and build a business empire.
He learnt all he knew from both his parents who were savvy business people.
You may be like ok. But he is old now. Does this system still work or even still exist? And the answer two both questions is a big yes.
The system is alive and well especially among the Igbos who are considered the custodians and masters of it. Some success stories from their side include Cletus Ibeto of the Ibeto Group
The system is so effective that is has gained recognition abroad as a very effective way of training young entrepreneurs and startups. You can watch the TED talk on it here.
So how does this work?
The system also is known as (Imu Olu or Imu- Ahia ) starts with a master/mentor taking a youth(intern) under his wings usually for a period of time running into a few years.
The intern is not paid but necessities such as meals, transportation and clothes are provided by the mentor.
At the end of the Internship period, the intern is usually provided with funds to start up his own business and with time after meeting with success will take on an intern of his own and the cycle continues.
I would strongly recommend you read up more about it Igbo apprenticeship system imu olu and Imu Ahia Igbo apprenticeship system.
So what are the advantages? Well if you apply yourself very well even with minimal education you can be very successful.
A friend of mine who was part of the team that worked on the proudly made in Aba initiative, said he felt quite humbled teaching Social Media and Digital Marketing to people who had millions sitting in their accounts.
It was an inspiring experience for him.
These people he said had found success without the benefit of formal education. And had managed to make it in an environment that lacked light, water and good roads.
Challenges: This is the school of hard knocks so to speak. You literally have to roll up yourselves and bend your back and work.
Manufacturing, importations and tailoring and their likes offer you very few hours in an air conditioning office at least at the beginning.
The only set back I see is that for now, we are yet to turn the system into something sustainable we can pass down from one generation to the next.
Something our foreign counterparts have mastered if you think about businesses like Benz, Ford and GE who have lived on long after their founders.
For now, the system lacks the benefit of a structure. This structure is what is usually thought in the formal setting of higher institutions.
Crucial things like the knowledge to draw up formal contracts use latest technologies, the importance of creating and managing departments like an HR, accounting, logistics as the business is growing, in other words, to scale the business to a point that it is still going for generations after are not implemented.
So usually such a business may expire once the founder is no more.
That been said it’s a path opened to anyone formally educated or not who is ready to the heavy lifting necessary.
Depending on what you want to learn the ability to read and write well should be enough.
Meaning if you were well thought at the primary level you can venture into this. Though you will fair far better if have gotten through a secondary school.
However fair knowledge of how to use a computer or smartphone and the internet gives you a very massive boost.
Teaching yourself something as now become easier thanks to modern technology.
If you can find your way to this blog your more than qualified to follow this path.
The internet has made it easier for anyone to master a lot of things. You can learn how to dance, juggle, cook, play an instrument, code.
You can even become formally educated by taking short courses and degrees.
Basically, so long as you can read, write and handle a smartphone which these days are as good as a mini computer, you can teach yourself something that pays well and makes you successful.
All of these and many more you can learn on your own.
This option works well if you can’t afford to or you don’t want to go through formal education.
So what do I want you to take away from all this
You don’t have any and I mean any excuse what’s so ever for not making something out of yourself.
As an adult, you need nobody’s permission to take control of your destiny. The question is how badly do you want to succeed?
To conclude I will leave you with an example of someone who found success by walking all three paths.
You may not him personally but most Nigerians in Lagos have bought phones from his shop. Read about Nnamdi Ezeigbo the owner of Slot Ltd.
I really would like to hear from you on this topic. Did I miss out any opportunity? Above all share with friends and family and especially with those who cannot read. After all, there is something here for everyone.