This edition promises to be an exciting one for readers. I will be treating few sundry topics under Money Management for entrepreneurs. This pill is critical to business success and financial success too. Having this knowledge will help entrepreneurs become better money managers, investors and successful business people.
As business people, we all face money challenges, whether severe or mild. To solve our money challenges, we need financial intelligence. Some common money problems for an SME owner could be:
· “I don’t make enough money.”
· “I’m deeply in debt.”
· “I can’t afford to expand my business from the revenues I make.”
· “I can’t afford to build or buy a house for myself and family.”
· “My car is broken. I need to fix it or get a new one.”
· “I have some idle funds, but I don’t know what to invest in and how to invest it.”
· “My child wants to go to the university, but we don’t have the money.”
· “I don’t have enough money for retirement.”
· “I can no longer run my business because of the high cost of things and the slow business. I think I need to get a job or change this business.”
· “My business needs to get new funding in order for me to acquire critical equipment, but what do I do?”
· “My dream is to take advantage of some business opportunities I have identified but I don’t have the money.”
Now, what I’m going to be sharing with us is going to help us even though it may not immediately drive away our money worries or even change our present financial situation. But over time, as we change towards money, we see our financial situation begin to change for us too. Sometimes we need to change to see our desired change happen to us. I believe very strongly that to be rich, we need to imbibe certain mental dispositions that are peculiar with the rich. And when I say the rich, I do not mean those who earned their wealthy status from lottery, inheritances, stroke of luck or through a situation that cannot be duplicated. I am simply referring to a class of people who earned their wealthy status by investing in their ideas, owning businesses, or who even rose on the job by building a formidable career.
The truth is, I believe some level of financial intelligence is needed for effective money management to happen in our personal lives and businesses. Now, let me start by correcting a notion that many people have. Your money matters and financial life are not to be left in the hands of the government, the society, your friends, your family, your relatives, other people and your boss. Your financial life is to be handled by yourself. And you cannot skilfully handle your finances until you are financially literate.
I have discovered from years of research and personal experiences that financial struggle is a direct manifestation of lack of financial skill and financial intelligence. Financial struggle is a direct product of working all your life without thinking of or planning for the future in financial terms. It could also mean running or owning a business and not even having plans for the future financially speaking. So whether you work for others or you own your own enterprise, you must take care of your finances by yourself.
There was this former bank manager I know who was a very successful and highly paid senior member of staff in the bank where he worked. He was very nice and warm and could be described as being kind to a fault. But few years later when I ran into him, he was a shadow of himself. He had lost his job, had no savings, no investments, no income-generating assets and his lifestyle had decreased so much. I pitied him. I discovered later that although he was a top banker, he lacked financial intelligence, never attended any seminars during his working days, never bought and read books on investment, and, as it were, depended solely on his employer to determine and shape his financial future. How wrong! The bank he worked for after some years was trying to restructure and because it was a foreign bank, it employed more of its nationals and retired some of its Nigerian staff. This man I am talking about was affected. If only he had taken the bull by the horns and minded his financial life by himself, things might have turned out differently for him.
There is no denying the fact that everyone wants to be wealthy or at least everyone wants to be free from money worries in their lifetime. Financial freedom is the dream of everyone. This desire cuts across all classes of people and ages. Everyone wants to enjoy financial liberty but it is sad that only few people know what to do. The counsel of King Solomon, the richest man in his own time, correctly describes this situation, “The labour of the foolish wearies every one of them, because they know not how to go to the city.” We all need money management skills to live the lives that God has destined for us to live. The good Lord did not desire us to be poor or impoverished. In a free country like Nigeria that we are privileged to belong, we can aspire to get to any point we want and achieve our financial goals if we give it commitment, take responsibility and employ financial discipline. See you again next week for the continuation of this part.
Bridget Olotu is the CEO/Lead Consultant, DeAim Innovative Resources Ltd. She can be reached on 08033036002 or .