Guest Post: The Beauty of Your Own Business by Bolaji Olawoye

I would love to describe business as an art of selling excellent service to people.

The following characteristics are key:

  • It is an art;
  • It involves service;
  • It involves excellence;
  • It involves profit;
  • It involves an audience or a market – people

Let us expand on each:

1. A Successful business is not trying to exploit people or hustling for gain; but the graceful wielding of a skill, excellence and mastery in service offering, trade and relationship with people. Modern business expressions that bring out this excellent mindset are popularly termed ‘service’, ‘commerce’, ‘brand-recognition’, ‘human resource’ and ‘customer service’. Godly business people are not trying to make a living; they practice something they love doing and are good at for that matter.

“Do you see a man who excels in his work? He will stand before kings, He will not stand before unknown men.” Proverbs 22:29

They know what they have to offer (product and/or service), who to sell it to (niche market), how to sell it (sales, adverts and marketing), how to distinguish their offerings (branding) and how to maintain a good relationship with their customers (customer relationship and service).

2. Your business involves service – always remember that you are doing a service to someone or people. You should be meeting a need. This is an ingredient of constant patronage – the goal of customer service. It should give you (and your staff) joy to satisfy a customer so that he/she LEAVES HAPPY!

3. Excellence is a great distinguishing factor – the way you ‘do it’, whatever it is that you do! Many people may sell food, few ensure that it is ALWAYS fresh and hot, serve it in a nicer way and maybe even bring it to you. When you ‘do it’ in a more excellent way and ‘serve’ one person, making them happy, boom, you have a great asset in business – a loyal news-spreading, mobile-advertising customer.

4. Trading for Profit, for me, can be an exhilarating exercise. It is not usually selling for a high figure that brings the profit. Profit can be buying much lower than you are selling. The skill is how to buy low (minimize your expenditures, maximize your assets/resources) and sell at a very affordable rate. Making your products/service very affordable without compromising quality is a great way of serving the customer in an excellent manner.

5. Your business needs an audience – a market. Your market should have a niche – a set of people it targets, serves and that are well suited for it. The niche may be one or more age-groups, societal class, career type and so on. You should be able to define such markets and target it excellently. Your niche type helps and guides your advert/marketing schemes as wells as product and service pricing.

The beauty of a Godly business:

“Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands that which is good, that he may have to give to him who has need” – Ephesians 4:28
“That you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.” – 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

A business is beautiful because of the following:

  1. You can mind your business.
  2. You have freedom in your finances and of your time.
  3. An opportunity to express the good works in your hands.
  4. People see your good works and glorify God.
  5. You can properly carry out your responsibilities to people outside; family, relatives, friends and other believers.

Building your dream Business – your wealth generating enterprise:
I do hope that you have a good understanding of what a business really is. Wealth responds to value; the value you create and make available to people. People do pay for what is of value to them, and more easily if they can afford it. To create a valuable product and/or service, you need skill or skilful hands. You may be gifted in wielding a God-given skill or in harnessing, amplifying and managing the skill in others.

Photo Credit: www.businesscareercenter.com;

Job Opening: An Editor is Needed for Urgent Employment

A new magazine targeted at working-class and self-employed professionals, launching in May 2011, requires the services of an experienced editor.

Responsibilities

Aside Reporting directly to the publisher, he/she will:

1. Be responsible for creating the editorial product, issue after issue.
2. Ensure that the content and the way it is presented satisfies the readers, in line with the magazine’s editorial mission and style guide.
3. Lead the creative efforts of the rest of the magazine’s staff, including writers, art director, photographers, and illustrators, etc
4. Be responsible for such things as searching for freelancers, assigning briefs and ensuring manuscripts are submitted as and when due. He/she will also ensure manuscripts submitted are in line with the magazine’s writers’ style guide.

5. Be responsible for fact checking, language strengthening, styling and trimming of articles to their optimum length.
6. Manage the magazine, including its people and resources, as the de-facto managing editor.

Qualities

He/she must:

1. Be a good writer who understands standard reporting and be able to offer practical help to the magazine’s writers, freelancers, and staffers alike. Magazine journalism experience will be a huge plus.
2. Be a wordsmith. He/she must know the language appropriate for the magazine and appreciate the precision of words, whether in text or titles or wherever else in the magazine.
3. Have an eye for illustration and design, to help ensure that the words – the text of the content – are displayed and presented to readers in an attractive, interest-arresting way.
4. Understand the audience – working and self-employed professionals, ages 21 – 47.
5. Be or become skillful particularly in the areas of planning, budgeting and fiscal management.
6. Have business writing background. Areas of interest include career, entrepreneurship, work, business and personal profiling, personal finance, book reviews, etc.
7. Have the right attitude. He/she must understand what it takes or be willing to work and lead others in a start-up environment.

Remuneration:
To be negotiated, depending on how well the candidate meets the above requirements.

Only QUALIFIED Candidates should send in their CV, showing in clear terms how they meet the stated requirements, to inbox@worklifemastery.com

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Essay Contest: African Liberty.Org Extends Deadline

African Liberty.Org has extended the deadline for its Africa-wide essay contest from November 15th, 2010 to December 20th, 2010. The names of the winners will now be announced on January 15th, 2011. The competition is open to African students and professionals between the ages of 18-35 and resident in Africa. In addition, the initial five (5) topics have been reviewed and reduced into three distinct topics.

Choose any of the three essay topics below and read the related texts as a guide.

1. Is the free market economy alien to Africa’s development?   Discuss. (1500 words only please)

2.  What would cause you to love your country and fear your government?  Are you comfortable with the present size and influence of your government? (1500 words only please)

3.    Do you believe entrepreneurship holds the key to poverty eradication?.  How does your government treat entrepreneurs? (1500 words only please)

PRIZES: 1st place: $1000  2nd place: $850 ,  3rd place: $650 +Full scholarship to 2011 summer school, 4th place: $300+Full Tuition scholarship to 2011 summer school  5th place $200 +Full  Tuition scholarship to 2011 summer school,  Other prizes: 10 Honorable mentions: $ 100 each

For a more detailed information, click here.