Categories
Entrepreneurship

Business Idea Development

Before you start a business, you need to have an idea that can birth the business. Generating a business idea is not an easy task; sometimes, you may experience an “idea block.”

According to Wikipedia, a Business Idea is “A concept that can be used for financial gain that is usually centered on a product or service which can be offered for money.

When thinking of ideas for a business (old or new), it is very important to carry out research, pay attention to details and follow a rigorous development and review process. Follow me…

MARKET NEEDS 

Before an idea is generated, it is wise to carry out research to identify the needs of your target customers. 

CREATION 

Brainstorming is the key to Concept Creation. You must also keep track of all ideas (as no idea is a bad idea), evaluate them and determine which is most valuable and profitable. 

ASSESSMENT 

This involves market research where data about your idea is collected and analyzed. You must assess all aspects of an idea before moving to the next stage. 

PLANNING 

A well-defined business plan will steer your business in the right direction and increase the chances of having a successful product launch. 

DEVELOPMENT 

At this stage, your ideas will be developed. You should create manufacturing and operations processes and market testing plans. 

TESTING 

This stage involves a test market that is as close as practicable to a real market. Here, your prototype will be released to the public. The prototype will be tracked and your test market results will determine whether your idea is valid enough to become a product. 

LAUNCH 

A successful product launch should address whether you have:

  1. A sufficient number of products in existence.
  2. Correct planning and marketing strategies.
  3. Appropriate documentation for your product. 

Business Idea Development can be high-risk, time-consuming and money-consuming, especially if the wrong steps are taken. This is why we go beyond offering courses on Business Enterprise Training at LEAD Resources. We incubate your ideas and give you all the necessary support for a successful product launch. 

Need some help? Contact us for organizational support here.

AUTHOR

Adetoyese Oyedunmade is an Associate Solutions Architect at Lead Resources. She is an Agriculturist by profession and is enthusiastic about entrepreneurship.

Categories
Entrepreneurship

Invisible Economics and the Chain of Consequences

In his book, “The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid,” C. K. Prahalad asserted: “Private Sector could have the greatest impact through creating profitable businesses serving the 5 billion people who represent the “invisible, unserved market.”

The worst thing that could happen to a people is not rejection or death; it is to be INVISIBLE, to be unnoticed. People aren’t just markets. They have dignity, choices, fears and needs that must be served. Sometimes, people are not really invisible; the onlookers are just blind. A society with few entrepreneurs is one with many blind citizens. Blind citizens cannot identify and explore resources, potentials and abundance hence, they perpetuate poverty.

Poverty is the testament that the dignity of a person has been threatened and his needs have been disregarded by self and others. It is the certificate of servitude issued by naïve societies and accepted by clueless citizens who have learned, accepted and endorsed self-helplessness. Poverty is the limit on alternatives. Abundance is the limit breaker. Abundance increases the quality of life; the quality of life improves with access; access is the inclusion of the excluded.

There are deep-seated motives that pass the test of reason and justify the need for entrepreneurship, enterprise, innovation and commerce. They, by far, outweigh the obvious need for survival and exchange. Citizens must organise, learn and self-educate to spot, earn and satisfy their dignity if ever they will disembark from the voyage of despondency. People of all races, cultures and tribes are beings of needs – needs craving attention. Entrepreneurs must be enabled to arise and arise to these cravings.

The Private Sector can institutionalize an enabling environment and push for equal opportunities thereby supplementing the deficiency of bad governance. The Private Sector can democratize access to ease, wealth and bliss. In an organised mode, the Private Sector can guarantee access to credit and uphold the currency of the Nation. This is required to engage the invisible economy and undo its chain of consequences.

LEAD Resources is an ecosystem enabler. We work to support the seamless catalysis of entrepreneurs and innovators. With fit-for-purpose capacity-building programmes such as our Business Enterprise Training and Digital Economy Emerging Managers’ programme, we contribute our quota to end poverty. To learn more about these programmes, contact us here.

AUTHOR

Elkanah Oluyori is a Digital Economy and Innovation Evangelist who is passionate about nation-building and community organizing. He has authored several relevant publications to this effect. Currently, Elkanah is an Associate Solutions Architect at Lead Resources, where he delivers Management and Development Consultancy to citizens, enterprises and the government. Owing to his vast experience in working with local and international development agencies, he leads Strategic Partnership at Reformers of Africa and coordinates West African Network on Peacebuilding (WANEP), FCT.

You may reach him via the following links:

Categories
Entrepreneurship

Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises in Nigeria: Roles, Challenges and Solutions

There is no universal definition for SMEs (Mutula and Brakel 2006, p. 403). Across countries, SMEs are defined on the basis of employment, assets or a combination of the two (Ongori and Lutham 2009, p. 94). According to the European Union (EU), SMEs are micro, small and medium-sized enterprises which employ fewer than 250 persons and have an annual turnover of 50 million euros or less. The Central Bank of Nigeria, in her Monetary Policy Circular No. 22 of 1988, defined SMEs as enterprises which have an annual turnover of five hundred thousand naira (N500, 000) or less.

ROLES OF SMEs IN NIGERIA

Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises form the bulk of businesses in Nigeria. According to a survey conducted by PWC, SMEs contribute 48% of the national GDP, account for 96% of Nigerian businesses and create 84% of employment in Nigeria. Since SMEs drive the economic growth, industrial transformation and export growth of the nation, it is safe to conclude that they form the backbone of Nigeria’s economy. Some advantages of SMEs include:

  1. They serve as the breeding ground for domestic, entrepreneurial capabilities (SMEDAN, 2005; Aina, 2007). They provide employment and income for most citizens.
  2. They facilitate the industrial development of the nation in accordance with the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
  3. They help to reduce the urban-rural income gap.

CHALLENGES FACED BY SMEs IN NIGERIA

SMEs are often faced with challenges that are peculiar to individual businesses. Certain challenges which stall their growth include:

  1. High-interest rates and maintenance costs of credit facilities as well as demands for duly registered collateral obligations.
  2. Inconsistent government policies and bureaucratic holdups in the administration of incentives and support facilities from all levels of government.
  3. Multiple taxes from both the State Government and Local Government.
  4. Poor infrastructure such as poor power supply, bad roads and poor transportation systems.
  5. Unavailability of local raw materials.
  6. High cost of procuring machinery.
  7. Import liberalization.
  8. Export constraints, amongst others.

SOLUTIONS FOR SMEs IN NIGERIA

  1. Provision of adequate infrastructure i.e. good road networks, adequate power supply, good communication and health care system.
  2. Elimination of the multiple taxation system.
  3. Tax holidays and rebates for startups which show initiative by sourcing for local raw materials.
  4. Provision of accessible and well-priced credit facilities.
  5. Effective marketing and distribution channels for SMEs through government agencies like SMEDAN.
  6. Loan availability and attainable payback mechanisms.

Seeing as SMEs are the backbone of the economy, it is expedient to devise means to increase their productivity, with or without the help of the government. Lead Resources offers programmes which educate entrepreneurs on how to access finance as well as manoeuvre the challenges that are peculiar to the Nigerian business climate. For more information, click here.

AUTHOR

Adetoyese Oyedunmade is an Associate Solutions Architect of Lead Resources. She is an Agriculturist by profession and is enthusiastic about entrepreneurship.

Categories
Entrepreneurship Human Capital Development Technology and Innovation

LEAD Resources to Collaborate with Remo Growth and Development Foundation (RemoGDF)

LEAD Resources is in the process of entering into a collaboration agreement with the Board of Directors, Remo Growth and Development Foundation (RemoGDF). The purpose of this collaboration is to engage in strategic Human Capital Development initiatives for the indigenes of Remo land.

On the 29th of February 2020, LEAD Resources scheduled a meeting with Mr. Abiola Ogundeko, the Director for Youth Development, RemoGDF, towards the establishment of this collaboration wherein a “3-point agenda” was proposed.

DEVELOPMENT OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES

The first agenda is the activation, development and encouragement of Small and Medium Enterprises to be true catalysts of the economic development of Remo land.

The following are the objectives of this agenda:

  • Improving human capital to become effective players in the economic development of Remo land.
  • Building a sustainable system for stimulating and developing the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises ecosystem in Remo land.
  • Rapidly providing conspicuous benefits for the populace via the operations of the ministry.
  • Supporting Remo land by achieving the objective of creating effective public and private collaborations in the programme.

CONVERSION OF DORMANT SCHOOL BUILDING TO TECH HUBS

The second agenda is the conversion of uncompleted and dormant model government school buildings in Remo land to Technology Hubs.

The following are the objectives of this agenda:

  • Improving human capital to become effective players in the economic development of Remo land.
  • Collaborating with more government programmes (such as Ogun Job Portal) to channel technology solutions towards the administrative challenges of the government in catering for the wellbeing of citizens.
  • Building a sustainable system for stimulating and developing the Information Technology ecosystem in Remo land.
  • Rapidly providing conspicuous benefits for the populace via the operations of the Technology Hubs and stimulating the activation of Technology hubs in other zones of Ogun state.
  • Supporting the government to achieve the objective of creating the path for emergence of the state as a leading player in the digital economy.

LEAD Resources believes that the conversion of one of the old, model schools in Remo land to a Technology Hub for Ogun state will symbolize the commitment of Remo community to Human Capital Development, empowering the people with relevant competencies for this digital age.

LEAD RESOURCES TO SERVE AS MODEL FOR YOUTHS IN INNOVATION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP

The third agenda of the collaboration is for LEAD Resources to serve as a model in Nigeria for building innovation and entrepreneurship capacity in Nigerian youths. This cause is towards raising competent youths for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and active participation in the Digital Economy.

At LEAD Resources, we believe the youths can be developed and mobilized for the overall acceleration of Nigeria. Via a structured process of providing relevant education and harnessing talent and energy, the Global Goals – living well, living happy and living large – can be the new normal for the Nigerian youth. LEAD Resources seeks to accomplish this by engaging the youths in pragmatic trainings of the Digital Economy Competence Systems such as:

  1. General SDG Awareness
  2. Digital Economy Competencies
  3. Personal Talent Profiling and Management
  4. Solution Conference and Design Thinking
  5. Community Solution Clusters
  6. Start Up and Scale Up Academies

In conclusion, LEAD Resources is enthusiastic to collaborate with RemoGDF towards the implementation of these initiatives which will foster creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship amongst Remo indigenes while also enabling the community (and beyond) to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

Categories
Entrepreneurship Technology and Innovation

LEAD Resources to Collaborate with Ogun State Ministry of Youth and Sport for Sustainable Youth Development Initiatives

Patently, the Ministry of Youth and Sport has consistently devised means to develop the latent potential of the youths of Ogun state. Therefore, LEAD Resources has sought collaboration with the Government via the Ministry of Youth and Sport to serve as a model for building innovation and entrepreneurship capacity in Nigerian youths.

This cause is towards raising competent youths for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and active participation in the Digital Economy. LEAD Resources seeks to accomplish this by engaging the youths in pragmatic training programmes on the Digital Economy Competency Systems such as:

  1. General SDG Awareness
  2. Digital Economy Competencies
  3. Personal Talent Profiling and Management
  4. Solution Conference and Design Thinking
  5. Community Solution Clusters
  6. Start-Up and Scale-Up Academies

General SDG Awareness

This will be provided through a cascaded training process (including the training of trainers so as to ensure effective coverage and delivery) of the essential elements, philosophies and justification of the SDGs for the youths. It will create a compelling case for committed action towards achieving the Global Goals through the engagement of ideas, enterprises of AYEEN and stakeholders.

Digital Economy Competencies

This will complement the normal academic curriculum with the relevant digital competencies to thrive in this digital age. Youths will be groomed to maximize opportunities and create defined career paths in corporate work, entrepreneurship and academia. The top-up programme will update their awareness of the digital economy and foster an appreciation of the forces driving and shaping the global economy.

The course will develop entrepreneurs by equipping them with the tools, skills and techniques to operate the levers of the 4th Industrial Revolution. In turn, this will reinforce the relevance of convergence and disruptive technologies and highlight the limitless possibilities for widespread solution creation.

Also, it is intended that the youths will be able to recognize the paradigms and gaps of their current disciplines and maximize the opportunity to adapt insights for application in the digital economy.

Personal Talent Management

This will explore the personal skills, profile and brand management of youths in their sphere of influence. This will provide the opportunity for an objective and thorough assessment of each entrepreneur covering who they are, where they are, what they are capable of and what is required of them to be accurately positioned as competent players in the digital economy.

Solutions Conference and Design Thinking

The Solutions Conference seeks to prepare the participants for solutions generation in services, products and applications that meet the needs of the community. This engagement will involve sessions on emerging technologies and relevant skills that can facilitate the building of products that can scale to wider domains. The conference will also involve the process of design thinking, the process of idea validation and the creation of minimum viable products.

Community Solutions Clusters

This involves the formation of clusters of youths in various communities and sectors that will use the acquired competencies from the previous stages to create and maintain solutions that can address the needs of their market and stakeholders. It will produce an understanding of the value chain in the market and how digital technologies can be used to address the needs and the expectations of employees, customers and other stakeholders.

Start-Up and Scale-Up Academies

The Start-Up and Scale-Up Academies are targeted at the application of promising ideas from the previous stages. They teach practical involvement in the business life cycle, the process of determining and attaining the required financial resources for business growth and the necessary digital skills to attract, reach and retain the market as well as understanding the performance and potential of customers, products, markets and the organization.

On Thursday 30th January 2020, LEAD Resources held a meeting with the Hon. Commissioner for Youth and Sport, Dr. Kehinde Oluwadare at M.K.O. Abiola Stadium, Kuto. At the meeting, LEAD Resources delivered a presentation on how these initiatives can help the Ogun State Government build the capacity of youths for employability in the digital economy.

In attendance was The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Sport, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Job Creation and Youth Empowerment as well as other directors of the Ministry. They were all impressed by the delivery and content of the presentation and expressed willingness to collaborate with LEAD Resources on these programmes.

At LEAD Resources, we believe the youths can be developed and mobilized for the overall acceleration of Nigeria. Via a structured process of providing relevant education and harnessing talent and energy, the Global Goals – living well, living happy and living large – can be the new normal for the Nigerian youth.

Categories
Entrepreneurship Technology and Innovation

LEAD Resources to Sign an MOU with Venture Garden Group

Venture Garden Group (VGG) is a leading provider of innovative, data-driven, end-to-end technology platforms created to solve real socio-economic challenges in impact sectors critical to sustainable economic development. LEAD Resources, which has a vision to be the indisputable knowledge leadership and real solutions provider out of Africa, sought to merge forces with VGG to birth more progress in the economy of Ogun state.

On the 25th of February, 2020, LEAD Resources held a meeting with the management of Venture Garden Group. In attendance were the Chief Solutions Architect of LEAD Resources, Mr. Kehinde Sogunle, the Managing Director and CEO of Highland Energy Solutions Services Limited, Dr. Sogunle, Associate Solutions Architect of LEAD Resources, Obot Essiet Jr., Associate Solutions Architect of LEAD Resources, Oyebola Simeon, CEO of kkkkk, Mr. Kingsley amongst other reputable fellows. The meeting took place at the Conference Room of Venture Gardens Group, Ikeja, Lagos.

During the meeting, the Deputy Chief Technology Officer of Venture Garden Group rendered a welcome address, briefly introducing the software company. He stated that they were in the business of converting “data to cash.” He expatiated on the services, products and achievements of the company, such as their EduTech platform, E-Health platform as well as their virtual internship programme for ICT enthusiasts wherein they are actively involved in grooming over 1200 interns.

The Chief Solutions Architect of LEAD Resources was given the floor and he discussed the various human capital development and social enterprise projects that LEAD Resources has engaged in and continues to engage in fiercely. He emphasized on how Venture Garden Group can be established and scale aggressively in Abeokuta via strategic collaboration with Ogun Tech Hub. Many opportunities were reeled out to promote the services and products of Venture Garden Group so as develop human capital on a wider scale as well as to make profit.

In conclusion, LEAD Resources, Ogun Tech Hub and Venture Gardens Group decided to collaborate, sign a Memorandum of Understanding and kick-start partnership for the greater good, human capital development.

Categories
Entrepreneurship

LEAD Resources to Sign an MOU with Abeokuta Business School

Abeokuta Business School is the Business and Executive arm of Crescent University. On the other hand, Crescent University is the pioneer Islamic, co-educational tertiary institution in Nigeria.

Abeokuta Business School has a goal to develop entrepreneurs who implement (not just understand) practical knowledge of business education thereby filling the gap in Nigerian Business Education. It is located at Km 2, Kobape road, Oke Mosan, Abeokuta.

Seeing that LEAD Resources has a vision to be the indisputable knowledge, leadership and real solutions provider in Africa, LEAD Resources continually seeks to collaborate with institutions that are driven towards “knowledge revolution.”

Therefore, LEAD Resources is working to forge a synergy an sign an MOU with Abeokuta Business School to organize executive education workshops, seminars and capacity building interventions in the school.

Abeokuta Business School will have the responsibilities of oversight of the courses and provision of certificates for successful students. On the other hand, LEAD Resources will take on the responsibilities of development of course contents and designing of suitable capacity development methodology for the achievement of the objectives of the courses.

Abeokuta Business School
Business and Executive Courses

Thus far, LEAD Resources has proposed to run 13 executive courses. Eight of these courses are based on Digital Economy Competency while five are based on Government and Public Finance Management.

The proposed courses are as follows:

  1. Drivers of Digital Economy
  2. Digital Business
  3. Understanding Digital Transformation
  4. Digital Marketing
  5. Leading Digital Transformation
  6. Digital Strategy
  7. Data Science and AI
  8. Building Digital Social Business
  9. Leading Economic Development
  10. Leading Sub-National Government
  11. Managing Regulatory and Enforcement Agencies
  12. Mastering Public Finance Management
  13. Public Finance Management

The tentative fee per course is N150,000 while the duration of the training is 2 – 3 days. Meanwhile, a plan is underway to organize a Business Outlook Seminar for CEOs, HR Personnel, Public and Private Finance Management Experts in 2020. For enquiries or more information, contact us here.

Categories
Entrepreneurship

LEAD Resources Collaborates with FUTMinna to Create SMEsabi E-Learning Platform

SMEsabi is an e-learning platform which offers a variety of online courses that demystify the basic and intricate knowledge needs of an entrepreneur in an African economy. In other words, SMEsabi builds capacity in entrepreneurs to start or scale their businesses in the bespoke atmosphere of the Nigerian economy.

The courses are offered in multiple languages including Nigerian Pidgin English. Each course also has video content, written content, assessments and additional materials. This reaches to the various kinds of learners such as the layman, the elite, audio-visual learners, hands-on learners etc.

SMEsabi
SMEsabi Learning for All

SMEsabi courses and modules were developed through the combined effort of a team of professional business coaches and ICT consultants with GIZ SEDIN Support in collaboration with FUTMinna and of course, LEAD Resources.

The development of SMEsabi was coordinated by GOPA consultants as part of a contract to develop interactive training materials for MSMEs and start-ups on behalf of GIZ-SEDIN.

Some of the basic courses available on the platform are:

  • Business Model Canvas
  • Business Planning
  • Market and Marketing
  • Access to Finance
  • Record Keeping
  • Entrepreneurship Essentials

Typically, prior to taking a course, a short assessment is taken by a registered user to determine the level of practical understanding that he or she has about the the course in question. After the completion of the course, he or she will be directed to take a programme assessment.

Now, if you register for a course, take the programme assessment and score 65% and above, you will be issued a certificate of training by SMEsabi (in conjunction with all her partners). Alongside earning a certificate, you will gain practical knowledge for making profitable, entrepreneurship decisions.

Taking these courses is a step in the right direction as regards recalibrating the minds of the Nigerians to be creative and resourceful employers of labour as opposed to the mindset of being employees for life.

Dear Nigerian Entrepreneur, why not register for a course today? Come and sabi this SME matter!