In business school, one of the modules I enjoyed so much was entrepreneurial strategy, and until then, I thought entrepreneurship was merely people who started their own businesses, but through it, I realized that it goes beyond that, and that it also involves corporate entrepreneurship known as intrapreneurship; launching a new business within a company you work for. It’s from the coinage, “intrapreneurship” that I came up with “pushnovation,” taken from “push” and “innovation.”
2020 had been a dilemma and a year so unworthy of nostalgia. Like so many people, I wish it would be wiped off history, with the indelible assumption that it never existed, but unfortunately, that’s mere wishful thinking; it’ll stay with us forever, a year that no one wants to remember.
Although 2020 needed lots of inoculation and it appeared like there was nothing good in it, but to those who made good plans and planted great ideas 2019 ending, 2020 was all good for them. As many businesses shut down and lots of people furloughed, it would be surprising to admit that some people got their dream jobs and companies like Amazon, Google, Alibaba, made huge profits. This might upset you but life and business are all about planning.
June 2019, as I sat down at work and pondered, I knew I wasn’t in anyway doing what made me happy. Outside, I was satisfied because I had published a number of books, written loads of articles, done great videos and audio podcasts, but I knew there was more to it; I needed to do it in such a way that it’ll attract the right income and give my target audience fulfilment. So I knew something had to change; I needed new knowledge and information, new experiences, new approaches, and new and far better results. That night, I decided I was going back to school!
Previously, I had studied biochemistry to a postgraduate degree level and took a shot at the MBA in University of Lagos Business School, Nigeria, but in honesty, then, I wasn’t satisfied with the school’s MBA program because it didn’t offer what I wanted. In spite of passing all my exams with very good grades, I abandoned the program plus certificate.
That night of June 2019, I said I was going back to do the MBA. I gave myself September 2020 to commence but started nine months earlier because I was self-driven to do it.
I wanted one of the best business schools in the world, so I researched on what makes a great one, and realized that only one percent of business schools on earth have triple accreditation; and they’re the best. I searched for the triple accredited ones in the UK; they weren’t too many and were very expensive, but that was what I wanted.
The process of getting into triple accredited business schools was hectic; you would write essays, fill out lots of application forms, get references, wait to be shortlisted, and then interviewed. Not all applications were successful.
I went for Imperial College, Warwick, Aston, Cranfield, Birmingham and Lancaster. A referee messed up my applications to Imperial, Warwick, Birmingham and Lancaster because she wanted me to remain where I was, although she lied the references were done. It was after doing a FOI check that I got to know she didn’t send the references. The other two schools I didn’t use her as a referee, I had offers; I decided to go to Aston Business School; a great decision.
People questioned why I didn’t put the thousands of pounds meant for school fees into business, but I knew a better information would give a better business, so I opted to go and study.
Listen, in 2021, you’ve got to do things differently. I decided to do things differently and no regrets. What I’ve acquired so far in terms of knowledge, information, experience, confidence; money can’t buy.
Go back to school if you have to; forget about your age. Like me, learn new skills. I’ve been training myself on all the Adobe software, and I mean all; InDesign, premiere pro cc, photoshop, illustrator, XD, After Effects, Lightroom, Acrobat, Audition; everything in its entirety, because I know you can’t get a different result if you don’t change your routine; that’s do things differently. I pay to learn!
Again, learn to collaborate. That’s where black businesses have problems. Individualism won’t take you anywhere. Get people involved. This was what Procter and Gamble did when Febreze was launched. It was heading for a disaster until they got researchers involved. Furthermore, don’t be afraid to fail. That’s one of the golden rules of entrepreneurial strategy.
One major chain shackling people and stopping them from reaching their dream heights is their way of thinking. In 2021, if you want a different result, you must think differently. My suggestion on how you should and shouldn’t think is on the quote below:
In 2021, if you want a different result:
…think outside your race
…think outside your religion
…think outside your beliefs
…think outside your skills/career
…think outside your age
…think outside your gender
…think outside your comfort zone
Same cue same reward
Do it differently this time!
Listen people, when 2020 started, we all had new year resolutions. Yes, we heard of the coronavirus, but “it was faraway in China,” so it wasn’t going to reach us, but it did. Many of us, if not all, were unprepared for what we encountered; we lost loved ones, lost our jobs, children couldn’t go to school and some, like my children were told to isolate twice because one or two classmates tested positive for the virus. But now, it’s no longer eventuality; we need to be ready for the unexpected. We need to PUSH and be INNOVATIVE. Primark, during the lockdowns made zero money because when other retailers embraced online shopping, they didn’t see the need to; they weren’t innovative. Yes, they pushed, but a push without innovation takes you round the circle. If you don’t want to go round the circle, don’t tell me you can’t use ZOOM, Microsoft Team or Google Classroom. We’re entering the virtual age where the only way to survive is going digital, otherwise, you will be left with bare hands.
If anything, coronavirus has made innovation compulsory, so push in that direction! Do a PUSHNOVATION!!