Entrepreneurship is becoming more popular among the youths of Africa as a career which can allow them to boost both their personal and professional lives. As there is a prominent lack of employment opportunities, teamed with political disturbances and socio-economic challenges across the continent, deciding to become an entrepreneur can actually prove beneficial for you. However, becoming an African entrepreneur would mean that you develop all the necessary business skills and knowledge. Moreover, you need to be prepared to drive your business through the constantly evolving market and the socio-political challenges in Africa. Let us take a look at what you can do to become a successful business leader….
Being An Entrepreneur In Africa
Africa is presently going through different problems like illiteracy, poverty, unemployment, terrorism and political turmoil. However, the scenario can be changed when the African youth take up entrepreneurship to enhance the capacity of the nation and create more jobs. Effective entrepreneurs can drive industrial as well as national development. But there are too many obstacles which discourage most aspiring entrepreneurs to get started.
Ashish Thakkar, who survived the Rwandan genocide, launched his own computer business after completing high school in Uganda. Now his business, the Mara Group, has expanded a lot and has become one of the most reputed conglomerates in Africa. Thakkar now leads a group of businesses with over 7,000 employees and functions in more than 19 African nations across different industries, such as agriculture, manufacturing, information technology, real estate etc.
Need For Promoting Entrepreneurship
Regarding encouraging entrepreneurship in Africa, Thakkar said,
“We focus primarily on young entrepreneurs. I know from experience that when you are young, the concept of networking is very alien and you don’t know how to go about raising capital. Learning the hard way, on the job, helped me understand why unemployment is such a big issue in Africa and globally. According to our government, the answer to unemployment is foreign direct investment. But I don’t believe that’s the only option, we should also look to nurturing Africa’s small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs).”
He further added,
“On average, SMEs provide 65% of private-sector employment in Africa… I frequently meet with entrepreneurs all over Africa, and my first question is always, “Look, what can I do for you?” They never tell me that money is their primary need, what they are really looking for is guidance. Many young African entrepreneurs are the children of civil servants or farmers. They don’t come from business backgrounds, so where can they turn for advice?”
How You Can Be An Entrepreneur
This is where the need for business education comes in, if you ask me. Nowadays, it has become imperative that you pursue an MBA to gain the necessary entrepreneurship skills, especially if you don’t have much knowledge about the business world. But as studying at a traditional business school can be highly expensive these days and result in a heavy student debt, it is better to pursue a fast track MBA online programme. Studying a fast track MBA will help you learn about the various facets of business and boost your leadership and managerial skills in the most affordable way. This will surely make you more prepared to launch your startup and become a successful manager and business leader.
As online courses are flexible, you will be able to gain relevant work experience while studying and get a deeper understanding about the industry and market. Moreover, you can advance your fast track degree to the final year of an accredited MBA degree programme from an associated university. A fast track MBA degree online will make sure that you acquire the right skills which will enable you to not only start your business but also to manage your company effectively.
How do you plan to become an entrepreneur? Feel free share your views and add to the discussion by commenting below.
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Given the challenges Nigeria is facing currently regarding politics, terrorism, poverty, unemployment and poor education, can the nation make a fresh new start in the field of science? Let’s take a look…
Developing Science & Technology – A New Era In Nigeria
In October 2004, UNESCO established a global advisory board to restore and renovate the state of technology, innovation system and science in the country, at a request of the Nigerian Government. One of the main activities of the reform programme is to conduct a joint review of innovation, industry and investment in the nation involving WIPO, UNIDO, UNCTAD and UNESCO.
The review is equally financed by Japan Funds-in-Trust, UNESCO and the Government of Nigeria to an amount of US $1 million. It is incorporated as a part of the preparatory work for a donors’ conference Nigeria which the country is gearing up to request to fund implementation of a long term plan of action on innovation, technology and science. Some of the other global agencies who are set to take part in the reform programme include the International Association of Universities, the World Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
Making A New Start
In fact, there is a pretty good chance that science is about to make a fresh start across Nigeria. From the shift to civilian rule back in 1999, which was consolidated with the election of the second Obasanjo government later in 2003, the country has definitely showed some strong signals of revived interest in science and technology.
Nigeria launched a low Earth orbit remote-sensing micro-satellite in October 2003 in order to analyze the environment and offer valuable data for substantial infrastructure development. This dexterity and readiness has empowered Nigeria to participate in a Disaster Monitoring Constellation with the United Kingdom, China, Vietnam and Algeria.
Since then, President Obasanjo has declared Nigeria is developing a Nigeria Special Funds-in-Trust for Science by investing US $1 million within UNESCO. The Special Fund will prove to be of great benefit to the country and also support various other African nations in creating and developing project proposals for reforming the state of national science systems in those regions. It will also aid in boosting managerial capacities, according to a 2004 statement by Professor Turner T. Isoun, Minister of Science and Technology.
Nigeria Is A Wealthy Nation
The truth is Nigeria has significant human potential and also includes 65 research institutes, 44 polytechnics institutes and 60 universities for the 133 million population. But there are some severe problems and challenges as well which need to be dealt with such as, poor management, inadequate funding of research and development, insufficient macro-level co-ordination and serious dearth of associations between universities or research institutions and industry.
Right now there is a strong need for reform of education & other aspects, which has become apparent after 40 years for military domination highlighted by rising foreign debt and state corruption, since the independence in the year 1960. The reform has started in perhaps the most ideal time as the country has experienced a GDP growth of almost 10% in 2003 and is driven by agricultural growth of around 7% and noticeable oil receipts. The benefits of the reform could eventually spell excellent rewards for Nigeria as it can certainly become a wealthy nation when properly utilized and exploited.
What do you think? Feel free to share your opinions and views on this topic by commenting below.
Source – bit.ly/1H9KQev