…insights from entrepreneurs in the food industry in Nigeria

Ep 78 : Have you been sabotaging your own business



” You don’t stop learning once you start a business. It is a struggle to keep it up. Every business is going to die your job is to prolong that death process “

Sometimes as entrepreneurs, we are our own worst enemy, we are the ones destroying our business. It is almost like you're on a treadmill running fast and you think you are active but you are not going anywhere. You might achieve the goals you want but you are not moving or growing.

This podcast is about how to separate yourself from your business. The challenge we have is that initially, we do everything as business owners; we are the ones putting the generator on, locking the place up, counting the cash, doing customer service and more. We need to quickly transition into the phase of being business owners.
A business is like growing a plant in a small pot and at some point, it gets big enough that you have to move it into a bigger pot so the plant can grow.

We as entrepreneurs get stock in this phase. It usually starts up by you having a desire to do your own thing because you have skills that you can capitalize on or you've seen a demand in the market you can fulfil so you go ahead and open your business,

This stage from the E-myth book by Michael E. Gerber is referred to as 'technician stage' which means you have a technical knowledge and putting in your sweat into the business. As you grow in business, sales picks up, there is more demand, you have one or two employees and you train them. In some cases, you are able to delegate some of the task to the staff. Two employees grow into four employees and more. As you grow in business, you now realize that you have to start managing people, so you go from technician to become a manager.

There are 3 main stages of growth in this journey , 1) The Technician Stage, 2) Managerial  Stage and 3) Entrepreneurial stage.  The Entrepreneurial stage is probably the toughest part and the least physically demanding. It is more brain power use, at this stage you have built the car and there is a road which you have to determine which route to take to your destination.

Many entrepreneurs focus on the technical stage, but unfortunately there is no growth if you are the best technician or  employee in your business. You've got to grow your business and have employees do the work for you, so you can focus on important things. It could be developing recipes, better sourcing, better marketing, PR and a lot of other things you can do with your time. As you are making up your business, there are certain work you need to push away from your desk.  

The frustration of Nigerian employees is not having well skilled staffs, the frustration of staff turnover sometimes makes you want to go back to the technical stage.


Sometimes the challenges we have again is how do you scale up, how do you grow your business, you have to work on your business and not in your business because there will be a lot of blind spots that you cannot see if you're working in the business.

A lot of people in this COVID era got exposed, In other to scale up in business, you have to delegate, hire the right team (hire people who are skilled).
For me, I share my recipes with all my staffs because as much as you want to protect things, you cannot grow if you focus on operations. You have to delegate more things from your desk. You get exhausted from running the daily business and the brain gets really tired. You've got to be able to clear activities off your mind to make sure you can think objectively about things and you are able to have clarity. As entrepreneurs you have to know what your time is worth. Hire consultants as entrepreneurs, because there are a lot of knowledge gap that we might not have and rather than you spending time to learn those gaps yourself, pay someone to come and fast-track it.

As an entrepreneur, your goal is to make sure that you're moving towards tech or moving towards simplifying task and you're able to gather your customers data. If as an entrepreneur, you are not aware of where the business is evolving to, you will be left stranded. You can only view where the industry is moving to as an entrepreneur not as a manager, not as a technician. You have to have a very broad view, you've got to read books on managing and motivating people. As you grow your business, you realize you have to start differentiating task and we don't factor this in, it helps your employees focus more on the task that is delegated to them. You also have to shake things up in your business. Things are changing constantly and your staffs have to grow with you if not you have to let them go.

For example, when soccer teams have problems, they are forced to change the coach because the coach is who they need to change, but the owners remain the owners. As an entrepreneur, you are the owner of your business. You have players who are in the field. you just make sure you have good facilities for them and you are paying them right. The coach takes the first fall because he is the man to bring out the best in the staff and you if have a wrong staff or coach, let him/her go because you want to play in bigger leagues and have more clarity.


I hope with this podcast you were able to get a better picture of what I’m trying to pass across and hopefully you can go into your business and make up for the loop holes that is draining your business. Have a wonderful day.


Book recommended.

E- myth Mastery by Michael E. Gerber.

Take way points :

1. There are 3 stages business owners should note : Technician, Managerial, Entrepreneurial stage.

2. Focus on your business as an entrepreneur and have your staff handle the technical aspect of it to enable it to grow.

3. Take some time off work to enable you clear activities off your mind and help you think objectively.

4. Hire a consultant if the need arises as they can give you heads up information regarding your business.

5. Plan for the future.

6. Don’t stop learning. Read books on managing and motivating.

Time Stamps


[00:00:29] Intro.

[00:07:22] How to scale up or grow your business.
[00:12:44] Consultant.
[00:13:33] business model.
[00:14:44] Take time off.
[00:17:25] Plan for the future.
[00:19:50] Branding.
[00:22:19] Grow your brand.
[00:28:14] Shake things up.
[00:31:44] Outro.

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