Thursday, December 20, 2007


December 2000

I was a university student and had a total sum of N300 to my name. I had to travel back home for the Xmas break and I also wanted to buy greeting cards to give to relatives and family friends.

I had budgeted my transport fare to be N200 and had decided within me that I had only N100 left for greeting cards. On the day before I was supposed to travel, I went to one of the stores around campus to purchase my cards. I looked around at the cards and realized the average price was N70 per card. I scanned more for affordable cards until my eyes ran across a pack of cards that had N150 written on it. I asked if the price was for each card in the pack and to my surprise, I was told that was the price for a whole pack. The pack contained 10 cards with different designs.

As I write this, I vividly remember standing infront of the shop owner, weighing all my possible options.

  • I asked the woman if I could buy half of the pack for N75, but she said she couldn’t, I had to buy the whole pack or pick other cards.
  • If I buy one pack of cards for N150, then I will not have enough money to travel home (In those day, asking for favours was not in my dictionary, didn’t even know they existed. I always took care of myself by myself).
  • I thought of purchasing just one Xmas card for N70 and then struggle in my mind to decide who deserved the card

After much thought, I bought the N150 pack of cards, went to my hostel and knocked on doors from one room to the other selling the greeting cards @ N30 each. It took me barely one hour to finish selling the cards and I made 100% profit. I stayed back in school that day, went back to the shop to buy another pack to sell the next day. Again, I sold all the cards using the methodology of the previous day, going from room to room knocking on doors.

So, around 12noon, I went back to the shop bought one last pack for my relatives and friends, went back to my room to carry my luggage and headed for the park with my transport fare and extra change of N100. (That meant a lot to a student like me in those days when a plate of fried rice and chicken sold for N120 at the New Buka of Great Ife campus).

December 2007
I had just resigned from my J-O-B on November 30 due to a nudging in my spirit and several other reasons. I did not have a job offer from any quarters and I had two options. I could sit in my house and wait for the next job or I could bring the next job to myself.

I chose the second option. Using skills I had developed from my days of working at V.I.P Consulting under the tutelage of a renowned great man, Fela Durotoye, I designed and produced a marketing communication material on organizing end of the year parties for organisations.

On Monday, December 4, 2007, I got in the car, went to the salon to get my hair fixed and from there went from office to office to offer End of the Year Party services. As I went from one office to the other, the number of ‘no, we’re not interested’ increased. At about 3p.m I was somewhat dejected and was on my way home when I received a call from one of the places where I was told ‘we have concluded plans for our party, we’re sorry…..’.

I was asked when I could come to their office to discuss our services and I replied right now. So I turned back and went to their office. After several, meetings and discussions on different days and telephone conversations, we received letters commissioning us to provide catering, decoration and other event related services.

On December 14, 2007, the event management company which I presently manage, Blossom Creations provided services for our first official client, one of the top 3 HIV/AIDS NGOs in the country.

The event was successful and looking back, I remembered the story of December 2000. And I reminded myself if you could do the little things, trust yourself to be able to do the similar bigger ones. Just like David when he faced Goliath, he reminded himself of his victory with the bear and he won victoriously over Goliath too.

I just wanted to share this to encourage anyone that has been feeling or acting short of who you can be……remember you past victories and trust yourself….



Beauty said...

You had a strategic plan. It’s called doing things. "You have done it" seemed more fitting to this great story. Wishing you all the best in your new business. Here is a line that I found useful.

“You are the storyteller of your own life, and you can create your own legend or not.” Isabel Allende

'Gbenga Sesan said...

I tagged you in my "7 Wierd Things About Me" post. Please see and post yours.

Season's Greetings...

Calabar Gal said...

Industrious Student!! LOL!!

I've had some money venture moves too in my days....

Came accross ur blog while roaming aimlessly on the net. Gone thru ur entire archive. (Thats how bad I detracted from my prior aim) Had a few laughs with some of ur nice posts. E.G: the one about being caught out by ur boss. Was ur friends brother - the corper ever found?

My Thots said...

@Calabar gal

Thanks for dropping by and reading so ardently:) I also do a lot of reading on your blog....

About my friend's brother, i don't have an update on the story yet but on searching the internet, i don't think he's been found. Tis very sad.

Nuggets of Gold said...

I have been in marketing all my life and i find that two of the key success factors are faith in your ability to sell and resilience.

These are great practical stories. Hopefully you'll put them together in a zig ziggler kind of book sometime soon

Bella Naija said...

Really inspiring!
Happy New Year. I am sure there is more to come.

Misi said...

Very encouraging words. I love your business acumen. You seem like a very sharp person. I would like to read more from you and your business.
We have something in common, we both went to Ife. I remember meeting Fela then too.

Demola said...

That was a lovely and challenging experience. The challenging part o it says to me to get up and WORK.
Thumbs up sister.

PJ said...

You are an encourager.

Joy Osifo said...

I just got wind on my sail! Thanx babes! Really!