YOU AND YOUR “USELESS” BUSINESS IDEA – Oluyomi Ojo

I have been opportuned in my few years of experience in the design business to come across different kind of people, organizations, teams, businesses and events and I must confess, I marvel at the way ideas are been worshiped  I have heard speakers speak about ideas in ways that can make entrepreneurs turn their business ideas into some demigods. Saying things like “ideas rule the world”, “ideas make the world go round” and “all you need to get a break is a brilliant business idea” Every now and then I hear people say “you got to protect that idea”. Here is the bad news; our ideas are as useless as a dirt. Ideas don’t rule the world neither do they make the world go round.  And please do note that when I say ideas, I mean every kind of business ideas you can ever think of.

A larger percentage of ideas been protected or even the ones being pitched around will never go anywhere, and it is important to know that these ideas are bound to fail not because they are invalid or because they are not brilliant, most of them will fail because of only one thing. Just one thing- EXECUTION.

All kind of people have absolutely brilliant ideas, just thinking about them, writing them down in some documents they guard diligently, discussing them with friends, family, associates and waiting for them to say WOW that’s a great idea! But in the end do absolutely nothing to make the ideas come to life, or having poor execution.

My job as the Director of Magic (yes! I do magic) at Urbanbaze as thought me a lot about ideas and executions, being in the business of selling ideas to clients as turned me into a student of understanding ideas and execution. Three years ago, we had an idea that was absolutely brilliant, we were sure it will change the way brands engage the youth market. It was so great that we talked about it at every meeting. But it was just an idea, a mere pregnancy that can get aborted. We decided to push it, we pitched it to some Nigerian brands and multinationals that we were sure wants innovative ways to engage with youths. Meetings after meeting, and as usual, all the pitched faded into complete silence or truthful rejection like “Guys, we are sorry, we tried, we couldn’t get management to approve it”.

One of the meetings, the manager walked up to me, shook my hands and said “you see, let me tell you the truth, no one is ready to buy into an idea that has not been executed, go back to your drawing board, create a product with it, give us a better reason to believe in it, come back and pitch, I believe it should fly, and if it doesn’t fly, well you have a product, so you can easily pitch it to other prospects”. It was like a veil was removed from my eyes, as we drove out of their premises, I knew we have all we need to make it happen. We gathered every resources we had, built our product, went back to pitch the same client and that was it. After eighteen months of pitching around, we struck gold. My lesson, it’s not the idea that will take you there, it’s the execution.

Truth be told, when an idea is yours, being biased about it is inevitable, it’s like your baby and you are likely to believe it is brilliant even if it’s not. An idea is just a starting point, it is the first step you take on a journey that may last your entire business career as an entrepreneur, which is why what you do with it and how you do it is more important. When next you come up with an idea that seem great, these few tips among others can help you strike gold.

  1. Spend more time working on your idea than you spend discussing it with people who won’t make any contribution than just nodding their heads and saying that’s a great idea.
  2. Start with anything, anywhere, making as many mistakes as possible. I was at a Google event and their team put us through how to execute ideas, they don’t wait, they just start immediately, learning how to make it work while doing it.
  3. Look at how your ideas can be monetized, by fixing problems for people or firms with it. If your idea can’t fix a problem, you are not different from a mother who just learns a new way to change a baby’s napkin, when others have moved on with diapers.
  4. Find people around you or far from you who can help make your idea happen and don’t just approach for favor, tell them what’s in it for them.
  5. Kill your own baby. That is be ready to allow your ideas to change or metamorphosed from what you first came up with into what the world needs, more often than not, your initial idea that seemed great is just a lamp to lead you to the real deal, clinging to it may stop you from making things happen.
  6. After all said and done, don’t ever think of protecting your idea, rather think of protecting your execution, a finished product or a service ready to be rendered, Google didn’t patent the idea of a search engine, Apple didn’t patent the idea if an iPhone, they patented the product itself. So no execution, no protection.
  7. Be aware that no one is ready to buy into your idea if there’s nothing in it for them, so while developing it, always look at the WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) part for every stakeholder which include you or your organization, your prospects and every other person who might have a stake in it. Let your prospect know what your ideas can do for them, is it awareness? Will it increase their bottom-line? Put the values first.

Via @under40prenuer

Ankara All The Way

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Indigenous fashion is getting high-octane. Now, you can accessories with Ankara handbags, clutches, totes and satchel. They are everywhere and are one of the best showy accessories in a woman’s wardrobe. Ankara handbags? They come in various shapes, colours and designs.

 

Ankara coming as clutches? Not a few fashion buffs accessories with them especially with formal and casual attire. Can you accessories with an Ankara bag? Yes.  Just be careful with the patterns and prints with you.  Most of the designs can accessories any colour and design of your outfits.

 

These accessories are good for red carpet event as long as you choose the appropriate dress to team with them.

 

For the Ankara statement neckpiece, you can wear on formal clothes and still look ravishing. Made from eye-popping coloured ethnic fabrics, you can’t but fall in love with them.

 

Though they come in big button-like forms, they are big, bold, and they scream ‘look at me!’ These neckpieces just came around in fashion circles and you know what? They don’t seem in a hurry to leave, what with fashionistas embracing them!

 

They give you the show-stopping look! Just pair any of these pieces with your dresses, tops, solid-coloured and small-printed dresses and summery tops (don’t wear with a strong pattern, since it has so much detail as it is), jeans, and you look like a million bucks!

 

Really, in the world of Ankara, wonder shall never cease!

COLOUR BLOCKING

The colour-blocking trend began about a year ago and it literally means an outfit made up of ‘blocks’ of solid colour.

Colour blocking is HUGE right now!! Fashion houses, bloggers and celebrities have all embraced this colourful trend. Contrary to many people’s assumption, colour blocking isn’t limited to women alone as male celebrities Kanye West, Tinie Tempah, Naeto C among other have been spotted in multi-colour attires.

Here are a few useful tips on how to COLOUR BLOCK:

1. Study the color wheel. In order to do most colour blocking you need to know what is on the color wheel.

2. Start with primary colours. Red,Blue,and Yellow are the primary colours. You can pair these three colors for a cute fresh outfit.

3. You can also pair up colours across from each other on the colour wheel like purple and yellow or blue and orange pieces for a bold look.

4. If you’re new 2 colour blocking try putting together an outfit wit colors in d same color family such as pink red and purple 4 a tied together look.

5. Use neutral coloured jewelery like black,beige,gold and white. Unless you want to look flashy.

6. Lastly, you can get two colours in the same family and pair the with the colour across from them. Happy colour blocking!

The Premier League and the 3 Robertos

The 2012/2012 Premier League season started at the usual frenetic pace that most of its fan were used to; lots of tension, flamboyant displays and goals galore. It featured new faces, teams, managers, player and certain 50 million pound striker who was yet to win over many of his critics. The opening stages saw Manchester United demolish Arsenal by an 8-2 score line (a development that led tight-pursed Arsene Wenger make 5 signings in 3 days to bolster his stuttering squad) only for the same team to suffer a 1-6 home drubbing in the hands of their “noisy neighbours”, Manchester City. This one was shaping up to be a true classic.

On the European front, the English teams have been disappointing with Chelsea being the only team to reach the Semi Final Stages of the Champions League, leading people in some quarters to suggest that the standard of the English game has fallen. It has been a truly dramatic season in the Premier League as Teams have come from the championship to play some really good football and grab valuable points along the way but another script has been playing underground; the story of two Italians and a Spaniard bound by their first name – Roberto.

MANCINI

 The 47 year old Italian was appointed the Manager of Manchester City in December 2009 following the sacking of MImageark Hughes. In his first full season he won the FA Cup defeating local rivals Manchester United on the way. He also qualified Manchester City for Europe finishing third ahead of Arsenal.

The Citizens started the current campaign like a house on fire winning 12 of their first 14 matches, and scoring an impressive 48 goals while only conceding 13. This led to consecutive player of the month awards for revitalized Dzeko and Silva in the months of August and September respectively while Mancini cupped the manager of the month award in October for impressive displays. Many were impressed with the impact of Agüero and Nasri which had given City an exciting, attacking verve.

Manchester City has since lost a bit of their early season form and now sit second, 5 points behind champions Manchester United leading many to speculate about the future of the manager. Even if he falls short of the premier league crown many fans will not forget him for leading them to their best finish in years and more importantly, inflicting the 6-1 defeat on their local rivals, their worst since 1955.

DI MATTEO

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The Swiss-born Italian played for Chelsea between 1996 and 2002. His passing ability and accurate long-distance shooting saw him become one of the driving forces of Chelsea’s resurgence in the late 1990s. He contributed nine goals in his first season, including long-range efforts against both Tottenham Hotspur and Wimbledon. He helped the club finish 6th in the league, their highest placing since 1989–90, and reaching the 1997 FA Cup Final at Wembley.

He began his managerial career at MK Dons where he led them to the playoffs which they lost. He then took over at West Bromwich Albion where he got them back to the premier league in only his first season at the club. He only spend 6 months with WBA in the Premier League; getting the boot after a 0-3 home loss to Manchester United even though most of the fans were still behind him.

On the 29 June 2011, Di Matteo was announced as the assistant manager to new Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas. On 4 March 2012 he was appointed caretaker manager of Chelsea until the end of the season following the sacking of Villas-Boas. In his short stint, he has led Chelsea to 9 wins in 11 games including their 5-1 over local rival Tottenham through which they booked a ticket to meet Liverpool in the final. Another notable achievement of the 41 year old manager was his ability to galvanize the Chelsea backroom after the former boss had bruised a lot of Chelsea “Big Boy” egos.

MARTINEZ         

Image                                                Martínez played as a midfielder and began his career at lower league Spanish side CF Balaguer. Two years later he went to English Third Division side Wigan Athletic. Becoming part of a small Spanish contingent at the club, alongside Jesús Seba and Isidro Díaz, he was a regular first team player for six years – the longest period of time he spent at a club.

He moved to Swansea City in 2003; in his first season Martínez was chosen as the team captain and helped the Welsh side avoid relegation from the Football League. He formed an important part of the team from 2003 to 2006, making 122 league appearances and captaining them to League Two promotion in 2005. He moved to Chester City, again playing as captain, but in 2007 former club Swansea City approached Martínez, offering him the position of manager. He accepted the offer and soon brought success to the team, winning three consecutive Manager of the Month awards.

Martinez’s managerial career has shown great promise and many have touted the 38 year old to be one of the best young managers in the game. The current season has been a challenging one for him though; with his team sitting in the relegation zone for most parts of it. He has enjoyed the backing of the club chairman and he has repaid the faith with an improvement in form that saw him defeat Manchester United and Arsenal in back to back games.

As the current premier League campaign draws to a close, the three Robertos are chasing different things; the Premier League crown, European glory and the pride of being among the elite teams in England. And TownCrierNaija wishes them well in their endeavours.