How to start a business in Nigeria is one question that has been on the lips of many young Nigerian entrepreneurs who have given their best shot on the idea of starting up their own business but without much or anything to show for it. Starting a business of your own in Nigeria is not a rocket science that is meant for the bright and fortunate once. Anybody can turn good business idea into a flourishing business that will perpetually put money into the pocket of the creator and also create job for others.
I always feel bad and embittered whenever I hear people say that there are no business opportunities in Nigeria. This is a fallacious statement that has quenched the zeal and desire to establish and run competitive businesses in Nigeria which has been harboured by many in the past. The world is not in short supply of ideas but, in short supply of determined mind that is needed to turn ideas into cash. This article is written in a clear simple manner to serve as a concise guide to becoming that business owner that you have been dreaming about.
It will be beneficial at this point to stress the fact that the right psychological state of mind must be obtained before taking the steps that are stated in this how to start a business manual. The importance of preparing your mind for the enormous business reality challenge is that it will help position you for the unexpected.
SIX (6) STEPS APPROACH TO STARTING A PROFITABLE BUSINESS IN NIGERIA
GET A BUSINESS IDEA
Generating a sustainable business idea is the first necessary step that must be taken by any aspiring entrepreneur that is serious about surviving the fierce competition in this our new business world. In as much as there are numerous business ideas, not all are fit for every particular situation and individual. Very many people make the mistake of copying a business idea that worked in a different environment without taking time to see if it will actually work in the environment that they find themselves. This will now take us to the next point.
CARRYOUT MARKET RESEARCH
A sparkling idea in some ones head might not have commercial value without taking much resource. Market research being a concerted effort to gather information about the potential commercial value of a venture before committing to it is a key strategic building block in any business strategy. Through market research, an insight into the needs of customers and the level of competition in a given industry or sector is obtained. You may not posses the statistical skills and expertise that is required to perform a market research. So, it is a good practice to engage the service of professional researchers for optimum result.
REGISTER YOUR BUSINESS NAME
It is funny to see many people that call themselves business entrepreneur operating under a name that is not recognised by law. Look, your business name is your legal identity that differentiates you from your products or services from the park of thousands or even billion of competitors. The other day, a lady walked into my office seriously complaining that the business brand that she has worked hard to build has been registered by another person who is now reaping from the vineyard of another.
She was disappointed when I told her that nothing much could be done other than try negotiating with the smart guy who spotted the loophole in her overall business plan and tapped into it. Secure your business name at the very least. A lot of people think it is difficult to register a business name, it is not, what gives a little problem is incorporation which you may not need at the beginning of your business.
It is not enough to get a business name; you also need to get the necessary licences and permits to operate if your business needs one. Countless of Nigerian businesses that require licensing operate without one and rely on the corrupt nature of the system to beat the statutory requirement of obtaining licence for their business. Well, this might seem to be working for them now but it will definitely not last. It’s just like building a house with straw. That house obviously cannot stand the slightest storm.
DEVELOP A BUSINESS MODEL
Business model is the phrase that is used to describe all that managers and business owners do in the bid to creating awareness about their product(s) or service(s). You need a good business model that is based on reality and not the one that is hyped. For a business model to be good, it must:
- Contain a clearly defined business goals and objectives
- Contain the product creation process that is essential to meet the objectives of the business
- Contain the market penetration scheme and strategy
- Have mechanism that will support customers
- Have a medium of feedback
Have it in mind that the idea behind the whole process of business modelling is to get the customers to pay for products and services that we offer. Ensuring that we do so in an ethical and satisfactory manner that the customer will have the urge to call again and refer us to others. This is where very many people have failed it. It is very easy to take the wrong approach in getting and sustaining customers – especially the ever demanding Nigerian customers.
GET THE REQUIRED FUNDING
There are many ways of getting capital to start up your business but in the Nigerian context, the primary source of fund is your friends and relations. Try raising money from people that can trust you.
The next form of financing that you might want to consider is the bank. The problem here however is that you will need to provide acceptable collateral. How to raise money to implement your business idea is the subject of another article in this site. Just search for it using the search button.
EXECUTE AND IMPLEMENT YOUR PLANS OF ACTION
This is the time to bring together factors in an efficient, economic and effective manner for the desired result as contained in your initial objective.
You will need to appreciate the fact that starting up a business from the scratch is not for the feeble minded. You need a lion heart with loads of shock absorber in order to overcome the numerous challenges that seem like obstacles at first for you to make it to the club of business owner. I am sure that after reading this article that the question of how to start a business in Nigeria will no longer be bothering your mind as six powerful steps that you must take to be successful in your business have been discussed here.