Business Enterprise Training (BET) is an initiative of Lead Resources to educate entrepreneurs about financial analysis, digital business models and the digital economy while giving them the leverage they need for access to finance. It is targeted at entrepreneurs with a drive to start or scale up their businesses.
For entrepreneurs to access loans from institutions such as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), it is legally required that they are trained by a recognized Entrepreneurship Development Institution (EDI) such as Lead Resources. The mission of BET is to raise functional entrepreneurs who can start and/or scale their businesses by accessing small interest loans from financial organizations to achieve their business goals.
Last week, Lead Resources held her first BET for the year 2021. Associate Solutions Architect (ASA) Adetoyese Oyedunmade (Team Lead, BET Team) coordinated this cohort, and she was ably assisted by ASA Itua Emmanuel and ASA Francis Edobor. The training held for 2 days (4th and 5th March 2021).
As is the norm, the last cohort of BET was a blended training, that is, part online and part offline. Every participant was required to take some basic online courses here, and present the required certificates from the undertaken courses. Subsequently, the offline training held at the head office of Lead Resources, Abeokuta, Ogun state.
On the first day of the offline training (4th March 2021), Mr Olufemi Johnson, the designated trainer of this cohort, taught the BET participants on Organizational Structure, Digital Business Models, Financial Planning, Marketing, etc. These topics were treated as independent, interconnected courses. The training, seeing as it was one filled with experienced businessmen, was more practical than theoretical. This first class lasted for 4 hours.
On the second day of the offline training, Mr Olufemi Johnson did a recap of all he taught in the previous class. He delved deeper into topics such as Business Plan Compilation and Executive Summary and ended with the crux of the convergence – Introduction to the NIRSAL Platform and Simplified Online Credit Business Plan Questionnaire. The participants were taught how to successfully access loans from NIRSAL and other financial organizations to start and/or scale their businesses. This second class lasted for 4 hours.
Afterwards, certificates were awarded to the BET participants, and feedback was received for better execution. The participants have gone on to apply their knowledge, and gain access to finance the right way.
Are you interested in finance to start and/or scale your business? Let Lead Resources give you the knowledge that gives you the leverage. Start by clicking here.
Tomiwa Babajide is an Associate Solutions Architect at LEAD Resources, a charismatic administrator, an SDGs advocate, a creative writer and a graduate of Microbiology. She is adept in transdisciplinarity, novel and adaptive thinking and virtual collaboration. She is zealous to provide real-time solutions to challenges in the polity. She loves to eat crackers and drink yoghurt, and she can pray and go on road-trips for Africa.
Budgeting is an aspect of Personal Finance that literally makes people shiver in fear😁 This is because it forces people to face the reality of their finances, and only the courageous can do that. Hence, people usually neglect it altogether. For this reason, I will not go into the “boring” intricacies and technicalities of budgeting – the part that scares people. I will keep this as simple and interesting as possible. My aim is to help you understand your need for a simple budget for your personal finance.
WHAT IS A BUDGET?
A budget is an itemized summary of intended expenditure coupled with expected revenue for a length of time. Simply put, it is an estimate of income and expenditure for a period. Cambridge dictionary defines it as “A plan to show how much money a person or organization will earn and how much they will need or be able to spend.” You may define it as “A list of all planned income and expenses, a plan for saving and spending for the near future.” From the definitions above, you can see that a budget is not something you create off-hand. It ought to be a written plan (on a piece of paper or PC).
WHO NEEDS A BUDGET?
There are different types of budgets for different people and situations. A budget can be created for an individual, a household, a business, an NGO, a State, a Nation, etc. Wherever a person or a group of persons make use of money on a regular basis, there is a need for a budget.
TYPES OF BUDGET
A simple Google search will give you many kinds of budget, making you more confused. However, I have classified budgets into 3 types, namely:
PERSONAL BUDGET – For individuals, families and households.
BUSINESS BUDGET – For NGOs, SMEs and companies.
ADMINISTRATIVE BUDGET – For schools, churches, LGAs, states, nations and other administrative systems.
Also, budgets could be classified as SURPLUS, DEFICIT or BALANCED.
It is a SURPLUS Budget when your income exceeds your expenditure for a set period. This should be everyone’s financial goal. This implies that there is more money for savings, investment and other things you want.
It is a DEFICIT Budget when your expenditure exceeds your income. Unfortunately, this is the situation many people find themselves in. They always run out of money to fund their expenses. This calls for a red alert as radical measures must be taken to remedy this situation. You need not worry though. You will know how to solve this problem by the time you are done reading this article.
Lastly, a Budget is BALANCED when your income equals your expenses.
WHY YOU NEED A BUDGET FOR 2021
I could list a thousand and one reasons why you need a budget. You might even know more. You may have learnt them in your Accounting or Economics class in Secondary School and may have attempted questions on them in your final external examinations (WAEC, NECO or JAMB). But what stops you from implementing them? Lol.
Perhaps, the most important reason you need a budget is that “Human wants are unlimited while the resources to meet them are scarce.” Sounds familiar, right? Yes, this is what you were taught in Economics. In addition, there are a lot of things, people and circumstances competing for your money. They want to take it away from you however they can – legally or illegally (Ask the victims of failed Ponzi schemes😂).
Unless you create a budget, which is basically a PLAN on how you want to spend your money, it is easy for these “human wants” to take your money away and leave you in poverty. If you experience the frustrations of not having enough for the things you need or begging for the necessities of life, you will realize you need a budget. I hope you don’t get to this point. Instead, realize that a budget is critical to financial control.
In summary, having a budget is important because it ensures that you have enough for the things you need (and things that are important to you) however and whenever you need them.
KEY ELEMENTS OF A BUDGET
When drafting a budget, there are certain things you must take into consideration, namely:
INCOME: This is the amount of money that comes in weekly or monthly. This includes all your sources of money – both passive and active income.
FIXED EXPENSES – These are the expenses that don’t change easily as they are paid regularly (monthly). Examples are rent, insurance premiums, taxes, debt payments, interest payment on a loan, child support, etc.
PERIODIC EXPENSES – These are expenses that are less frequent. They come in periodically or unexpectedly. Examples are car repairs, home maintenance, gifts, appliance repair, loans, etc.
VARIABLE EXPENSES – These include every other thing that you need for daily living. They are called “Variable” because they vary from time to time. They include food, utilities, phone bills, TV subscription, gas, fuel for car and generator, clothing, education, medical bills, transportation, entertainment, name them. They are usually the most difficult category of expenses to track because they fluctuate a lot. When trying to fix your deficit budget, variable expenses are usually the first place to start trimming.
HOW TO DRAFT A SIMPLE BUDGET MASTERPLAN
In other to draft a budget successfully, you will need some basic tools, namely:
Notebook or PC
STEPS TO CREATE A BUDGET THAT WORKS FOR YOU
DETERMINE YOUR PRIORITIES: To be frank, even if you were given all the money in the world, you would still wish for a million things. So, since your income is limited, you should arrange your needs and wants in order of importance.
HAVE A GOAL: Once you know your priorities, set financial goals and deadlines for each goal. When you define your goals (What are you saving for?), your amounts (How much do you need to save?), your deadlines (When do you need that money?), you can create a budget – a roadmap – to achieve your goals.
CREATE A LIST: Write down and categorize all your expected income and expenses in vertical order of importance. Don’t forget to divide them into Fixed, Variable and Periodic Expenses.
HAVE A PLAN: After creating the list, you need to have or create a plan, that is, determine how you intend to meet your needs and what percentage of your income you will allocate to each need.
CALCULATE: This is the stage where you have to apply basic arithmetic. Calculate the real figures and determine how much you need to allocate for each expense. Wherever you get stuck, use a calculator. In the end, you should have a lot of figures.
EXECUTE: Finally, get into action. You aim should be to spend exactly or below what you have budgeted.
HOW TO STICK TO YOUR BUDGET MASTERPLAN
The thought of sticking to your 2021 budget from January to December should not give you goosebumps. Simply follow these guidelines:
Place your budget somewhere you can see every day.
When you feel like giving up, remind yourself why you created the budget in the first place.
Most importantly, have an accountability partner – someone to hold you accountable for the way you spend your money. If you’re married, your spouse can be your accountability partner. If you aren’t, your best friend, pastor, parents or anyone you can trust can be your accountability partner. Better still, you may join my SBM Program to have an experienced Financial Intelligence Coach as your accountability partner.
In summary, taking charge of your finances in 2021 begins with having a Savings and Budget Masterplan. Now that you have learned how to create these plans, it is time to put your knowledge to work so that 2021 will be a remarkable year for you.
N/B: This article is an excerpt from a webinar which was first published on my Facebook community – Financial Intelligence Forum (FiFo). Join the community to access my past and future publications.
For an in-depth course on financial literacy and how to manage your personal finance, I recommend that you enroll for LEAD Resources’ Digital Economy Emerging Managers’ (DEEM) programme as more practical measures of attaining financial freedom in the digital economy have been distilled therein.
Obot Essiet Jr. is an Associate Solutions Architect at LEAD Resources, a Financial Intelligence (FINTEL) Coach and a Co-founder/COO of Naiyuan Mart, a Chinese-Nigerian procurement and manufacturing company. He runs a blog and a community on Financial Intelligence. He is passionate about helping people journey towards financial freedom through practical financial literacy solutions. Obot Essiet Jr. loves writing, gardening, watching adventurous movies, cycling and playing chess.
I have discovered that most of the challenges people face stem from a lack of control of their finances. Apparently, many people have a distorted view of the place and the value of money. While some overestimate money, others underestimate money such that they do not give thought to how much comes in, how much goes out and where it goes to. This nonchalant attitude has run so many households into financial crises.
In this article, I am going to share
with you why savings is important as well as some strategies you can use to
save a sizable amount by December 2021. First, let’s look at some
statistics that show that the lack of savings is a major problem in the world
1. 42% of the American workforce live
from paycheck to paycheck (including 25% of those earning more than $100,000
2. 29% of the American workforce have
less than $1,000 in savings. Half have less than one month’s income saved.
3. The personal savings rate in 2014 was
4.4%. This means that out of every $1,000 earned, an average American spent all
4. Thanks to factors like high student
loans and skyrocketing rent prices, millennials in America have a savings rate
of negative 2%.
5. Approximately 10 million households
in America have no bank account whatsoever.
6. 52% of Americans can’t cover a $400
unforeseen expense without borrowing or selling something.
7. Only 17% of the population have an emergency fund that can last three to five months.
8. Finally, 36% of Americans are not
saving at all for retirement.
Although the statistics apply to
America, I believe the situation is not different in Nigeria and other
developing countries. The statistics give you an idea of the poor level of
savings in the world today. Unless we educate ourselves about the need to save
and budget, nothing will change. This is why I write this article: To help you
understand where you lost it, pick yourself up and get ready to take charge of
your finances in 2021.
WHY YOU LOST CONTROL OF YOUR FINANCES
Before I divulge some strategies to take control of your finances in 2021 and beyond, let’s examine what went wrong in 2020 – why the New Year Resolutions you made on 1st January 2020 fell through after the first 2 months! We are taking stock of your financial life in the past year to ensure you don’t repeat the mistakes made anymore.
Lack of financial discipline in the
way you manage your money is the major reason your finances went haywire. It doesn’t
matter that you intended to save a certain amount every month. What really
matters is that you have the discipline to “work out your intention” by
creating a plan and sticking to it. That said, here are the specific reasons
you lost control of your finances in 2020.
1. You Didn’t Have a Budget:
In my next article, you will learn
in-depth how not creating a “written budget” for your finances literally cost
you a lot of money in 2020. To achieve financial discipline, a budget is
Perhaps, you have negative thoughts
about budgeting. You see it as a self-imposed constraint and as such, you
detest it. You are not alone; I was there too until I realized what harm I was
causing myself! The truth is this: If things must change, you have to DUMP that
mindset. You must understand the purpose of a budget. It is created not to
prevent you from spending money, but to ensure you have money for what is most
important to you. Without it, you will spend money on impulse. So, you need to
be convinced to make a budget for yourself as we get into the new year.
2. You Failed to Stick to Your Budget:
The decision to take control of your
finances by having a budget is preliminary. Following up on it is where many
people give up. Perhaps, you were disciplined enough to sit down and draft a
budget for yourself. But, somewhere along the line, you ditched it for your old
habit of financial uncertainty. Why so? Here are some reasons:
· You Didn’t Have A Concrete Financial
Goal for Your Budget: Having a budget without a financial
goal is like having a map without a destination in mind.
· You Got Distracted from Your Goal: You couldn’t contain the temporary
pains of delayed gratification.
· You Didn’t Have an Accountability
Partner: Many a time, all you need to stick
to a new habit is to have someone you are accountable to like a spouse,
reliable friend or coach.
3. You Spent a Lot on Liabilities:
According to my Rich Dad mentor, a liability is anything that takes money out of your pocket. Most of the things you were happy and eager to buy actually took money from you. In the long haul, you discovered that you had very little money left for the things that are important to you and financial hardship set in.
WHAT IS SAVINGS?
The Business Dictionary defines
savings as “The portion of
disposable income not spent on consumption of consumer goods but accumulated or
invested directly in capital equipment or in paying off a home mortgage.”
To me, savings is income not spent or
deferred consumption. It is not necessarily the absence of spending, rather, it
is the intentional act of setting money aside for a particular goal or purpose.
Any money that is not used for immediate consumption but preserved in a deposit
account for future use can be referred to as savings.
Accumulating money for future use and
delaying impulse buying can help you to determine whether what you want to
spend on is a need or a waste of money. If you do not save your money and your
expenses exceed your income, you can be said to be “living from paycheck to
WHERE DO YOU SAVE YOUR MONEY?
There are various ways of saving
money. Some people make use of a jar, piggy bank or envelope system when
dealing with hard cash. This is okay for short-term saving. However, long-term
savers need a safer method of keeping money, which is why it is wiser for them
to use a depository institution like a bank or cooperative.
In banks, there are different kinds
of account in which you can save, e.g.:
1. Savings Account
2. Current Account
3. Certificate of Deposit
4. Money Market Deposit Account
These accounts offer varying interest
rates based on certain terms and conditions. You need to educate yourself on
their pros and cons to make an informed choice.
HOW MUCH MONEY SHOULD YOU SAVE?
How much you should save depends on
your financial goals. To be considered “financially secure,” it is recommended
that an individual or family should save at least 6 months’ worth of expenses.
For example, if your household incurs a monthly expense of N50,000, you are
expected to have a balance of at least N300,000 as savings to be considered
“financially secure.” To reach this amount, it is recommended that you save
between 10 – 20% of your net income until that amount is reached.
WHY YOU SHOULD SAVE MONEY
Your savings is money which you set
aside for a specific purpose. It takes discipline and sacrifice to save. Now,
it is tough to develop a saving habit without understanding why you should put
in the effort in the first place. Here are some reasons to save instead of
1. Save for Freedom:
If for no other reason, save money
because it gives freedom – the state of knowing that you have cash reserves to
use whenever and however rather than feeling stuck in financial problems
because you await the next paycheck.
2. Save for Financial Security:
Financial Security is only possible
when you have enough money saved to cover your emergencies and support your
future financial goals.
3. Save for Annual Expenses:
There are certain (household)
expenses that are far beyond your budget. They require that you save for them.
4. Save for Retirement:
For government workers, retirement
money is automatically deducted from their gross income alongside taxes so that
they never waste it. However, for entrepreneurs and workers in the private
sector, they must put money aside every other month for their retirement.
5. Save for Emergencies:
We don’t pray for them, but
unexpected circumstances happen every now and then, ranging from health issues
to car and house repairs, etc. It is wise to save for rainy days.
6. Save for Education:
Some people save in order to further
7.Save for cars, homes, electronic
appliances and gadgets.
8.Save to get out of debt.
9. Save for Investment:
For those who want to grow their
wealth, this is the most pertinent reason for saving money.
Saving is important to the economic
progress of any country as well as wealth creation for any individual. There is
always an increase in productive wealth when people are willing to abstain from
consuming their entire income. This is consummated when these savings are
invested in productive ventures in order to earn more money.
HOW TO SAVE MONEY
Usually, people save by subtracting
their current expenditures from their income and keeping the remainder. The
problem with this method is that many a time, after subtracting expenditures,
very little or nothing is left for savings.
Therefore, the RECOMMENDED method of
saving is by Paying Yourself
First. What this means is
that you decide beforehand what percentage of your income will go into your
savings account, deduct that percentage FIRST whenever you receive your
paycheck, then live off the remainder. Although it takes greater financial
discipline to tow this path, this method works, every time.
HOW TO DEVELOP A CONSISTENT SAVING
Once you have made the decision to
save, the first challenge you will face is the struggle to keep the ball
rolling. Without a clear goal and a concrete plan, it is easy to give up on
your Savings Masterplan. When trying to save, it is important to take on the
challenge as you would when trying to develop a new habit. This new, consistent
saving habit is called Financial
Discipline. To develop this
habit, here are the steps to take:
1. Be Angry at Your Current Financial
Until you get mad and express
dissatisfaction with where you are today, you will not have the willpower to do
anything meaningful. You cannot solve a problem with the same mindset used to
create it. Don’t just wish to save. Get your emotions involved by being so mad
about your finances that you want to do something about it.
2. Increase Your Financial Intelligence:
After you realize what a financial
mess you are in, the next step is to invest in financial education and learn
how money really works. Visit blogs, read articles and take courses on Personal
Finance. Depending on your situation and schedule, you may employ the services
of a financial coach to guide you.
3. Make a Budget:
A written budget is a plan that shows
where your money comes from and where it goes to. It gives you a sense of
direction and makes the habit of saving easier to adopt. Experts recommend that
you allocate, at least, 20% of your income to savings in your budget. You may allocate
a greater percentage if you want. However, if 20% seems like a hurdle, feel
free to start with a smaller percentage and grow from there. Savings is a habit
that can be cultivated by taking baby steps.
4. Pay Yourself First:
You may automate your savings (using
either a bank standing order or FinTech platform like PiggyVest). Hence, you will save without even
thinking about it. Remember, your savings should be your first major
expenditure after receiving your paycheck.
5. Be Mindful of Your Spending:
Before you buy anything, ask
yourself, “Do I need this? Is there a cheaper alternative? Can I do without it
altogether? Am I just buying this to feel good?”
6. Reward Yourself Periodically:
Find creative ways to celebrate when
you cross certain milestones in your Savings Masterplan. It trains your brain
to remember that good things come with hard work.
Savings, like every other endeavour
or resolution, needs a masterplan, a systematic approach, and focused
commitment for it to work for you.
Given the information shared in this
article, I believe that you are well-armed with all you need to take your
finances seriously in 2021. If you need help creating a customized savings and
budget masterplan for the next year, I advise you to enroll for my 2021 Savings and Budget
Masterplan Accountability Program which lasts for 30 days. I will
guide you through such that you will be confident enough to create a Savings
Masterplan for next year. By the time you complete the program in early
January, you will have a personal finance blueprint that can guide you
throughout the year. Enroll now!
If you cannot afford the program,
there is a limited offer for a discount on my book, “How to Save Like A PRO: 30 Radical Money Saving
Hacks That Can Help You Hit Your Financial Goals.” You can get it here.
N/B: This article is an excerpt from
a webinar which was first published on my Facebook community – Financial Intelligence Forum (FiFo). Join the community to access my past and future
Obot Essiet Jr. is an Associate
Solutions Architect at LEAD Resources, a Financial Intelligence (FINTEL) Coach
and a Co-founder/COO of Naiyuan Mart, a Chinese-Nigerian procurement and
manufacturing company. He runs a blogand a community on Financial Intelligence. He is
passionate about helping people journey towards financial freedom through
practical financial literacy solutions. Obot Essiet Jr. loves writing,
gardening, watching adventurous movies, cycling and playing chess.
According to Wikipedia, financial
literacy is the possession of the set of skills and knowledge that allow an
individual to make informed and effective decisions with all of their financial
Most of us believe that having more money or getting a bigger pay at work will reduce our financial stress and solve half of our problems. However, we fail to realize that one’s financial wellbeing is considerably more determined by how they manage and spend their money rather than how much money they make. Your beliefs about money and your spending patterns greatly influence your potential to create wealth.
Financial literacy covers topics such as budgeting, expense tracking, investing, debt, taxes, emergency funds, retirement savings and estate planning.
WHY IS FINANCIAL LITERACY NECESSARY?
Financial literacy is necessary because it equips people with the knowledge and skills needed to manage money effectively. What do I mean? Financial literacy ensures that every financial decision you make is backed by a rationale that empowers you to be confident and secure in your choice.
Statistics from a study in 2019 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in America showed that lack of financial literacy cost Americans a total of $295 billion in 2018. Some of the households which participated in the study reported annual losses of up to $2500 due to poor financial decisions. Furthermore, it was stated that 63% of Americans could be categorized as “financially illiterate.” This buttresses the fact that financial literates make better money decisions than those who are not. Imagine how much you will be able to do if you can track your expenses, seal the loopholes in your purse and save more money?
Also, we must intentionally seek financial literacy because it is a subject that is rarely taught in our conventional education system even when much of what happens outside the four walls of school revolves around money management. Without financial literacy, even a well-educated and gainfully employed graduate can slide into bad debt and poverty.
FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE AS A PRODUCT OF FINANCIAL LITERACY
In my words, financial intelligence
is the basic knowledge of how money works and the application of this knowledge
in making financial decisions that make life better. It is the knowledge and
skills gained from understanding finance and accounting principles in the
business world. This understanding, financial intelligence, can only be gained
through financial literacy.
There are three types of education: academic, professional and financial education. The primary school system places much emphasis on basic literacy skills such as reading, writing, speaking and solving arithmetic. Students are graded based on their ability to develop these skills and apply them in solving real-life problems. Very little or nothing is taught about financial education and money management in higher institutions. Hence, you must be deliberate about educating yourself on money. As you strive to build your intelligence quotient, also work on your financial intelligence.
Interestingly, the skills gained in FINTEL are NOT innate; rather, they are learned and can be developed at all levels. So, you don’t have to worry about having a low grade in this. You can improve no matter the level you are. Contrary to popular beliefs, financial intelligence is NOT the state of having a lot of money. It is neither a goal nor a course that you are graded for. Rather, it is the means to the goal of financial freedom!
QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU GAUGE YOUR FINANCIAL LITERACY
It is easy to assume that you
are financially literate because you “know yourself.” However, your personal
finances need extra attention if you want to live well. The only way to get a
better handle on your personal finances is by identifying what you don’t know
and putting in the effort to get educated.
Here are a few questions
identified by Bayportsa
to help you identify your financial literacy gaps:
Budget: Do you have a monthly budget that includes all of
your basic expenses, debts and savings?
Expenditures: Are you tracking your expenses
and do you know about how much money you spend to cover living expenses over a
period of three to six months?
Debt: Are you in debt? Are you taking active steps to
reduce your debts?
Emergency Funds: Do you have emergency funds that
can help you to get through an event like losing your job or crashing your car
without having to borrow money?
Savings: Do you pay yourself first? What percentage of your
income goes into savings? How do you manage your savings?
Investing: Are you investing and growing
your money? Do you understand how compound interest grows invested money?
Insurance: Do you understand the
importance of insurance? Do you have insurance to protect you in the event of a
major life emergency?
If you answer “No” to two or more questions, you have some learning to do.
HOW TO INCREASE YOUR FINANCIAL LITERACY
Read self-help books on financial education. Follow authors like Robert Kiyosaki, Dave Ramsey, T. Harv Eker, Brian Tracy, etc.
Read blog posts and articles on personal finance in newspapers and magazines. Some popular blogs include investopedia.com, entrepreneur.com, forbes.com, Business Insider, Bloomberg and fintelcoach.com. For a steady supply of information, you may subscribe to their email newsletters.
Watch YouTube videos on money management.
Attend financial literacy seminars online and/or offline and take notes.
Take an online course on any aspect of financial literacy that you want to master.
Listen to podcasts and radio programmes on financial management.
Get a competent financial intelligence coach or personal finance expert to give you financial advice.
Join a community of people who learn about financial intelligence. This allows you to ask questions and learn faster from other people.
Practice and share your knowledge. Put your newfound literacy into practice. Draw up and stick to a budget. Save. Invest. Don’t just learn and keep the knowledge you acquire to yourself. Teach others whenever you have the chance. This is the best way to consolidate your knowledge.
BENEFITS OF FINANCIAL LITERACY
In an article by Georgiasown.org, it was stated that financial literacy is important because it helps people become self-sufficient and achieve financial stability. Financial literacy enables people to save money, distinguish between wants and needs, manage a budget, pay bills, buy homes, pay for college and plan for retirement. In a nutshell, it helps you create a realistic roadmap for making financial decisions all through your life.
Financial literacy empowers people. Although I am not trying to imply that you need to become a financial guru or accounting expert, however, knowing how interest rates work, the difference between stocks and bonds and the factors that impact your financial wellbeing will give you a sense of financial security and control over your life.
Need I say that financial literacy
decreases your stress level? When you lack financial education, anything that
resembles credit, interest rates or investments seems intimidating and leaves you
feeling at a disadvantage. When people are well versed in the state of their
finances, they have the information needed to take action, modify their
investment portfolio or continue with their current strategy.
Furthermore, understanding your
finances helps reduce the risk of becoming a victim of fraud. Some tactics are
easy to believe especially when they come from someone who seems to be
knowledgeable and well-intended. A basic level of financial education will help
you recognize red flags and, at the very least, talk with a trusted advisor
before making financial commitments.
In conclusion, financial
literacy is an essential life skill that every person, whether employee or
entrepreneur, should deliberately learn and hone. If you stay committed to personal
development and investment in financial intelligence, you are on the pathway to
achieving financial freedom.
If you would like to take an in-depth course on financial literacy and how to manage your personal finance, I recommend that you enrol for LEAD Resources’ Digital Economy Emerging Managers’ (DEEM) programme as more practical measures of attaining financial freedom in the digital economy have been distilled therein.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Obot Essiet Jr. is an Associate Solutions Architect at LEAD Resources, a Financial Intelligence (FINTEL) Coach and a Co-founder/COO of Naiyuan Mart, a Chinese-Nigerian procurement and manufacturing company. He runs a blog and a community on financial intelligence. He is passionate about helping people journey towards financial freedom through practical financial literacy solutions. Obot Jr. loves writing, gardening, watching adventurous movies, cycling and playing chess.
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 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:
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.