Our breakdown of Startup Grind Lagos’ February Meetup with Nimi Akinkugbe and Muyiwa Oludayo

Our breakdown of Startup Grind Lagos' February Meetup with Nimi Akinkugbe and Muyiwa Oludayo

Startup grind has managed to break a norm that is often associated with most entrepreneurship events held in Nigeria. The event kicked-off on time and more impressive, guests and our guest speakers arrived on time which I suppose is fitting considering that our featured talk was on Time Management.

In typical Startup Grind fashion we started with our Ice Breaker question to help ease the guest into the event. Discussing the difference between Businessmen and Entrepreneurs we had the following opinions:

  • Entrepreneurs are passion driven while businessmen are more profit oriented – Bukky
  • I believe Entrepreneurs work in a more structured environment compared to the businessmen – Mrs Yesufa
  • Businessmen are not long term thinkers – Pradeep

On the issue of should an Entrepreneur pay themselves salaries?

  • I believe the theoretical answer is yes but in reality no as the demands of the business requires a lot of personal sacrifice.
  • I believe we should always factor in the salary because when the business grows it will be easier to differentiate between the business capital and the earnings of the entrepreneurs.
  • It might not be feasible at the beginning but it is good to always factor in the salary of the entrepreneur.

Discussing money or network the following opinions where aired;

  • It is all about the money there is no two ways about it. – Tope
  • Money or network is dependent on the nature and business model of the business as some businesses are more network based while some businesses are just capital intensive. – Ella
  • According to Robert Kiyosaki to be a successful entrepreneur one must learn to make money without having money. – Pradeep

At this point in the  event there was a tangible feeling of value as guest were focused milking every piece of information they could lay their hands on. Not so surprising as we later came to realise that we had more of an audience of budding entrepreneurs and people trying to venture into the entrepreneurial circle.

Introducing Dr Olumuyiwa Oludayo who shared insight on Time management and how important it is was the Chapter Director, Uwem Uwemakpan.  During his talks he pointed out how mundane activities such as picking out a dress to wear are big time wasters. From a productive viewpoint he shared how we have 3 working days in a full day. His lecture which hugely focused on techniques, principles and methods in which we can better utilise our times.

Dr Muyiwa’s session prompted some interesting questions such as:

  • How does one ensure that they don’t end up being a robot with the over scheduling of one’s time?
  • If he didn’t like being an employee, now that he is an entrepreneur what is he doing differently when it comes to hiring his staff?
  • How do you handle spill over of events in your schedule?

Addressing all of this questions Dr Muyiwa pointed the need to be flexible with our Time Schedule by creating gaps in our daily schedule that could help us deal with unforeseen activities that might hinder the discipline required to follow through with our scheduling. Dr Muyiwa explains that he makes sure he addresses his employees as shareholders and also stressed the importance of knowing the strengths and capability of those who work with us and factor their abilities when it comes to our we manage our time as an organisation.

In his final remarks he emphasized that it is extremely difficult to train people to adhere to time but insisted that we should go the extra mile by demonstrating through our actions the ways to keep to time.

After Dr Muyiwa’s lesson the moment almost everyone in the audience was waiting for had arrived. It was Time to hear Nimi Akingugbe talk on Mastering our Financial Grind. Nimi was introduced by the Chapter Codirector, Blessing Abeng, shortly after a lady shared an experience of having being at an event where Nimi’s words help her realise that she had to restructure her family finances.

Nimi took over the room with such grace and charm as she began to highlight the current realities of our country both the positive and negative outlook. She explained that although it is a bad time to start a business, recessions have always been a period of great innovation both economically and financially.

Nimi responded to our second Ice breaker question as well adding that it is always important to factor in the salary of the entrepreneur as it is never too early to start keeping a good financial record for your business. It helps you as an entrepreneur acknowledge the growth of the business.

She dived straight into how one transitions from a working job into entrepreneurship. She advised that we shouldn’t just quit our jobs without properly analysing the cost as most startup usually fails in their first year. Drawing from her own personal experiences she shared on how she was able to transition from the banking sector to being the CEO of Best Man games.

Furthermore, she continued to emphasize the need to be smart when dealing with the daily operational cost of business and the need to cut down on expenses as the devaluation of the Naira has made doing business and living luxuriously very difficult. She said the adjustment will be tough but the time for competing with each other is over and we need to confront the new realities of our society. For it is better to manage rather than servicing a debt that might prove too difficult to repay.

Nimi continued to shed light on how businesses shouldn’t take accounting for granted. That if it requires that an entrepreneur be trained on how book keeping in business works it is a lesson that should be learnt early. In similar fashion she explained how we shouldn’t take the issue of taxes lightly and if we are in anyway not competent enough to deal with such issues we should never be afraid to consult with someone who can help.

Finally, she touched on the importance of structure in a business even from the onset of the business as the wrong people in a team could significantly damage the potentials of business. We should therefore, be careful of the people we associate with as that will impact the way we handle the challenges we face daily in our personal space and in our business environment.

Moving on to the final segment in our Startup Grind event which is our fire-side chat (lantern chat), Nimi answered questions on how she dealt with her failures, learning about taxes, investing in mutual funds, not experiencing the social stigma of being a woman in an influential business environment dominated by men and balancing her books.

Taking questions from the audience Nimi advised on how ponzi schemes are never a good idea, writing your business plan yourself is very important or in some cases making sure that you are actively involved in the writing of your business plan if you are outsourcing it and how it is better to be a partner in a billion dollar business than being the sole owner of nothing.

Nimi and Dr Muyiwa have helped impact a lot of our attendees at this event and for that we are truly grateful. All is as it should be with the curtains closing on the event in the only way an event like Startup Grind should end with people connecting and networking.

You can listen to audio snippets from the event here

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