I like to outsource every single task that doesn’t require my personal input. Why wash your car or your clothes when there are professionals that will do it faster and better, thus freeing you up to be more productive in another area that you are an expert? I moved into a new neighborhood last year and with the move came a challenge; there was no proper solid waste disposal system. I needed someone to pick up my garbage regularly. A neighbor gave me a referral for someone that could help me do this. The waste disposal guy showed up the next Saturday. He’s barely in his teens. We discussed terms. He’s to show up every Saturday to pick up the garbage and dispose of it for One thousand naira (N1,000) i.e. about $5 (five dollars) monthly charge which amounts to about $60 annually.
I got talking with this young entrepreneur and discovered that he was serving over twenty other clients like me in the same neighborhood. He doesn’t work full time. He schools full time and only comes around on weekends to pick up the garbage which he carries in his hand pushed cart to the designated waste dumps in the state. So working just one day in a week for a few hours, our young CEO pockets about N20,000 ($100) on monthly basis which may not sound like much until you remember that some full grown adults earn the same amount for some full time work in the same town. While some other individuals may spend hours talking about how the government has failed to provide a waste disposal system for the state, this smart young entrepreneur is already making a minimum of N240,000 ($1200) on annual basis working only part time, solving problems.
Scale it up
Scale up the services being offered by this young CEO in a few years. Maybe a truck or even several large motor driven trucks may replace his hand pushed cart. He could even employ several young boys in the same neighborhood or several neighborhoods all over the state to assist him in same tasks, thus becoming an employer of labor. The N240,000 ($1200) annual income may become N240million ($1,200,000) annual income depending on how many families he is able to serve and in how many towns.
While he is packing garbage right now, someone much older is wearing his white collar and black tie with his large envelop of resumes going from office to office looking for a J-o-b while at the same time calling this teenage CEO dirty “dutty” boy.
It’s great to think big but ok to start small. Keep Hope Alive!