Posts in Blog

Special Post: The New Landscape

The first Platform I attended held on 1st October, 2007. One of the statements I will never forget from that event was Dapo Adelegun’s prediction of the coming change in the world’s labour market. He predicted then that in two years, people who would survive in the labour market would be those playing very specialized or rare roles. Thus a number of people would lose their jobs and be left with the option of either starting their own business or staying idle (and looking for a job).

I want to believe that a number of those heard his words at that time either decided to develop themselves and become more valuable in the market or began to explore starting their own business. I can imagine on the other hand that some might have ignored this as some prophecy of doom or negative statement but I made my own choice there and then. You may or may not know that his predictions proved true for a lot of us not because he was being ‘prophetic’ but simply because he had analyzed the economy of the world accurately. That kind of depth of thought is very desirable.

A couple of years ago when I told an uncle of mine how much I was earning, he remarked that I could just grow with my current employer and need not bother looking for another. That might have been true in his generation but it certainly not true in the 21st century with such concepts as outsourcing, flat structure, downsizing and cloud computing staring us in the face. Job security and business stability in our age is definitely not as it was half a century or so ago. The way out is new ideas, breakthroughs, inventions and innovation, expansion of existing structures.

At some point in a generation or two, the capacity of the main stream systems becomes exhausted and simply cannot take in more. At such points, someone just has to Think Outside the Box if life is going to continue to be comfortable. Entitlement mentality and hubris will take one nowhere at such junctures. The breakthrough for your circle of influence could just come from you, you know. At this year’s first Platform on May 7, examples and the ‘hows’ of Thinking Outside the Box will be explored. Be there and Engage the Future with us!

www.theplatformnigeria.com/register

Happy Holidays

We have spent fours days so far without having to go to work! It’s Easter! I have been enjoying the holidays and doing a lot of sleeping as well as reflecting. On Friday, I was fired up and broke into Chapter Two of Till Death (by the way that’s just page 29). Stuff has happened – Dupe has given birth, her mother-in-law is coming over for omugho of sorts (I will let you find out what that means). And moreover she is about to have a life-changing accident. On Friday night, my pen was racing over the paper like a roller coaster, I really thought I was going to hit like page 40 this weekend but I think I still did OK.

So what have I been up to then? Well, asides from the sleep, and the Easter buzz, today, we had a volunteer’s meeting to prepare for The Platform 8.0. The Platform is a motivational programme organised bi-annually by Coveneant Christian Centre. The core drive of the Platform is helping people see opportunities, improve performance and generally advance in their careers and business. The Platform is open to everyone who can attend free of charge. Interestingly, starting last year, the Platform streams live on the Internet and local television. Moereover, this year, the Platform will stream on Blackberry and iphone Smart Devices. To be part of the platform on May 7, 2011 wherever you are, you can use the following links:

www.theplatformnigeria.com/live

www.theplatformnigeria.com/bb

www.theplatformnigeria.com/iphone

www.theplatformnigeria.com/audio

If you are in Lagos, you can be at the venue: Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos Island. The Platform is always a massive and very educative. This year, we are expecting the likes of Jared Cohen, Director of Google Ideas; Lanre Olusola, ASET/NCUF Certified Life Coach; Leke Alder, Principal, Alder Consulting; Sam Graham-Felson, Chief Blogger during President Obama’s 2008 Campaign; Saray Lucy, Award winning American Technology Journalist; Tony Rapu, Senior Pastor, This Present House; and Anand Giridharadas, New York Times’ first Bombay-based corresponedent in the modern era.

If  you plan to be there at TBS, please do register as soon as possible at www.theplatformnigeria.com/register. Space is quite limited. I look forward to seeing your there. Adios.

Special Post: Thinking Outside the Box

I once heard the tale of a Toad who lived in a small pond hidden inside a cave far below the surface. The only rays of light that managed to reach the pond came through a hole that seemed too far even for he and his relative’s minds to explore. One day, he decided to venture beyond the hole from where he saw light. When he returned from his adventure, he began telling everyone how vast the outside world was, how much light there was, how many beautiful trees and flowers there were and most of all, the endless swarm of insects to eat. They laughed him to scorn claiming the world could not be any bigger than their little pond. he gave up on them and moved all by himself into the outside world.

The Box is that region of thought where we are confined to until our horizon is broadened by some out-of-the-ordinary experience or exposure. The Box is the boundary set on our minds by tradition as well as the routine experiences of those in our limited circle of friends and family. The Box is what age-long institutions have established as the norm, the rule of law or the ‘core policies’. The Box is that limitation which sometimes drowns innovation.

The Box is difficult to break out of without upsetting the status quo; difficult to break out of without a rebellion of sorts. The Box is often the main stream until someone dares to get out of the Box and begin a new mainstream. The anti-Boxes of our generation are demonstrated in Microsoft’s breakthrough in Personal Computing, Facebook’s  breakthrough in Social Networking, Google’s breakthrough in Knowledge Management, The Nigerian Govenerment’s introduction of mobile telephony, Interswitches introduction of ATM networks, Ushahidi’s web-based Crisis Tracking system and so on. These innovations and the like have changed the way we live on all sides – business, careers, communication, relationships etc.

Innovation often requires that people break out of the main stream, and that traditional thought patterns be changed. Innovation requires that we look at the problem from another angle. The problems we are faced with today combined with the complexities of the 21st century demand that we begin to look at this things quite differently, that we think not just deeper, but wider. Welcome to a future with new solutions.

Be at the Platform on 7th May 2011. www.theplatformnigeria.com.

Drive Yourself

Combining active writing with a regular job is not necessarily easy no matter how much one loves the hobby. In my case, I often get home about 8:00 PM or half an hour later, then I have to take a bath, eat and watch a little TV. Once in a while I have time to talk with my family. By the time I am through with all this, I am hitting 10:00 PM or so and then it’s time for STV news!

My initial plan was to write for an hour every night but it is not working out that way so far but I expect to pick up pace. I have written just about twenty-three pages in the new book ‘Till Death’.  Sometimes as I write, it dawns on me that I have to do a bit of research to make the story more true-to-life  (imagination is not always sufficient to do a good job).

Whatever be the case, as applies to every other goal in life; great things can be achieved by doing something a bit at a time consistently. I did a small calculation in my mind earlier and figured that if I wrote just one page every single day, I will have a 365-page book at the end of one year! Now that’s not so bad, is it?

Pursue your dreams consistently, folks. Ciao.

Building a Blog Site

Building Igiri Books has been an experience. Most of the work was done by my friend and colleague, Ademola. He is a good developer and has been very helpful. he built the site using WordPress as a platform and an already made template. It could have been done in just a few hours!

Today I learnt how to use already made plugins to integrate with Facebook and Google. Ads are now being published on my site and I expect that this post will automatically be replicated on Facebook. Soon I will work on doing the same for Twitter. You know, when you are selling something, you have to give it the best of publicity (by the way, did I ever tell you I can do Facebook ADs for your business? that’s by the way). It is really amazing how much of free code is out there waiting to be used.

It is also amazing that so many people only play on the Internet! There is a lot one can do to earn money and be productive. Whatever your line of work or business is, I am sure you will find free resources on the Internet which will prove very useful. I have found much in my efforts to publicize my book and I am sure there is something out there which will work for you.

See you later then.

Self Publishing

A number of people have asked me why I chose to publish Njansi abroad. I simply reply that one of the biggest attractions was the global exposure given to the book. Njansi is available on Amazon, E-Bay, Barnes and Noble, WHSmith, Better World Books and several other online book stores from the US to Europe, India to Australia, South Africa and back to Nigeria! A Google search will convince anyone that the book is indeed global.

I got to know about Authohouse’s Book Publishing package through an email advert. I ignored the first mail but a few weeks or so later I go another mail offering a 40% discount (it normally costs at least £795.00 to publish a book at Authorhouse). I decided to give it a shot that’s when I started talking with Derek Pastrana, my first Publishing Consultant.

Self-publishing allows the writer to own his work and be completely responsible for it. There are downsides of this method such as the cost borne by the writer and the fact that you are likely to be responsible for the editing and quality. In the case of Authorhouse, the process makes it possible to still preserve some degree of quality if the writer is careful enough. You will be required to sign a contract, review and sign the typed galley and cover before printing. In addition, Authorhouse uses print-on-demand so if you do end up making mistakes, you will have an opportunity to correct such without affecting too many copies.

Authorhouse also provides a variety of marketing solutions for which they will charge you. You may want to truy them out.

Till Death – The New Book

Till Death is about Marriage. That would surprise some people who are close to me but like I told Osas, I do have a very sound imagination. Till Death starts out with the wedding ceremony of Emeka and Dupe being narrated by one of their unknown guests. The variety of ‘stuff’ known to happen in Nigerian weddings are represented in some knid of ‘maze’ (for want of words).

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Njansi – The Book Launch

The D-day was very sunny. I arrived in a taxi with my Mom and Aunt Oyiri and met my dear family and friends working to create a glorious event. Ij, my younger brother was there. He had left as early as 5:30 am that morning with some stuff since that day was ‘Environmental Sanitation’ in Lagos (movement wouldn’t be allowed from 7:00 am to 10:00 am). He later told me Pamela joined him and helped so much in getting the books packed in carrier bags. Tosin, the lady who did a great job of decorating the place was also there. Bro Deolu had just arrived too, with Michael, the Head, One 1000 Events, his fiance Ayo; Yemi, some ushers, and Bro Gboyega, the sound man and his team. It was a pleasant sight.

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