Two years ago, a friend came to me in hopes of borrowing money from me to start a piggery because he had heard that others were making good returns in that business. He wanted $2,000 but he had bought a mobile phone worth $1,500 just the week before he came to me. When I made that discovery in our conversation, I advised him to sell the phone at $1,350 and invest the rest in the business. He didn’t find my counsel interesting at all. He went away very sad!
For me, it is absolutely senseless to be using a mobile phone worth $1,500 when you do not have any investment which is ten times that amount. Expenses of this nature should only be made with surpluses of one’s viable investments. Such a person does not deserve the assistance he was seeking. But a few days later, he called me and said he was able to get somebody to buy the phone for an amount of $1,400. That for me was a good deal and great news.
Initially, he had explained how impossible it was for him to live without an iPhone. I put a few leading questions to him to find out what gains he was making by keeping such a pricy phone. It appeared he was rather wasting more money on credits and data, making needless phone calls and watching unnecessary videos. He was blaming the government for his unemployment when he had everything he needed to start a viable business. Two years down the line, he has learned to shun a consumerist approach to life and diversified his investments. He is doing well now, as he has added farming and raring of other farm animals to the piggery.
The fruit eater or consumer mindset inspires an unhealthy desire to acquire the latest products on the market. There are people who go every length just to buy the latest phone on the market. Every year they change their phone and discard the one they had bought the previous year. The famous quote ascribed to Will Rogers comes in handy: “Too many people spend money they haven’t earned to buy things they don’t want to impress people they don’t like.”
Since fifteen years ago when I started motivational speaking and writing, I have come across so many people who think they cannot generate enough capital to start their dream businesses. Some genuinely do not have collateral to secure the amount they consider sufficient to pursue their objective. A lot of the times, people who are in a rush for huge amounts to land their dream business eventually fail and get into trouble with their creditors. The reason is that, they have not learned how to manage resources by starting with little.
Whatever you want to do by way of business, learn to start small with the bigger picture in perspective. Start locally with a global agenda. Let these words of commendation be a constant reminder of where God expects you to start from: “Because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities” (Luke 19:17b). The challenge of raising the initial capital to start a particular project is a disincentive to so many who have great potential for business operation. However, a serious-minded person will be willing to start small, to gain field-tested experience in the process of growing his or her business from one level to another.