This is the third and final part of this series. If you missed the part one and two, you may need to read them to have a more holistic understanding of the topic. Let us now examine the roles of other segments in the process of selling Nigeria.
7) BUSINESS OWNERS: Whenever I have the opportunity of talking to business owners, I usually tell them that as founders of businesses they are to become better sales men and women if they hope to keep their businesses alive. I usually give this piece of advice because I see a lot of businesses in Warri (where I am based) that are shut down because of poor patronage. For every business that is closed, more people become unemployed. When more people (especially youths) become unemployed, they make themselves available for different forms of unlawful activities like arm robbery, kidnapping and so on.The truth is that as a Nation, we need more business owners to become better sales men and women. And the reason is very simple. When more business owners become better sales men and women, they would be disposed to solve problems better. They would start by taking outstanding care of their employees and developing their productive capacity (mental and physical). Such a step would motivate their employees to be more disposed to respond to the needs of customers (solve their problems) better. And of course when they serve customers better, such customers would stay loyal to them as well as spread positive word of mouth advertising to their friends and relatives. Such businesses would experience increased sales and growth. They would expand and employ more people. This would reduce the unemployment level in Nigeria. It would also reduce the number of youths engaged in unlawful activities in different parts of Nigeria.
Alhaji Aliko Dangote (Chairman of Dangote Group of Companies) must be commended in this regard for his giant strides in numerous sectors of the Nigerian economy. His latest exploits in the areas of agriculture as well as petroleum refining and petrochemical are colossal efforts that would create massive employment for thousands of unemployed Nigerians.
8) EVERY CITIZEN: I may not have specifically mentioned your role in the process of selling Nigeria to Nigerians and foreigners thus far. It will require a whole book and even more to be able to talk about the specific role of every Nigerian in the process of selling Nigeria, hence I have categorized every other group of persons or sectors as every citizen.
It is quite widespread to see a lot of Nigerians in different walks of life complain bitterly about the terrible situations in different sectors in Nigeria. We are very quick to point accusing fingers at those in positions of authority (Our Leaders), but we never stop even for a minute to ask ourselves whether we have any role to play in the process of selling Nigeria. We blame others but exempt ourselves. The bitter truth is that as far as you are a Nigerian; you have a role to play in the process of selling Nigeria to Nigerians and foreigners. You have a role to play to make Nigeria better in all spheres.
I really love the words of wisdom of Grant Bright (former Project Lead IBM), which says “Sometimes one can become lost in a big company and lose sight of how what one does truly helps or impact the end customer. If you are one of those, think of a fire brigade, a line of people passing buckets of water from a source of water to the site of the fire. An individual in the brigade may not be able to see the end result, i.e. the water being thrown on the fire to put it out, but the contribution of the individual is indispensable to the final outcome”. This is the kind of mindset that every Nigerian should imbibe. Our daily actions no matter how little helps to either solve Nigeria’s problems or add to the problems. So, before you take any action whether as a group or an individual always ask this question, “will this action that I (we) want to take help to sell Nigeria better or add to her problems?”.
As Nigerians we shouldn’t think foreigners will come and sell Nigeria for us. We will be deceiving ourselves to think so. All great countries in the world today, were built by the nationals of such countries. And the building process started from their minds. If we must borrow a leaf from such countries as Nigerians; we must start the process by reorienting and restructuring our minds. We must tell ourselves that as Nigerians we are all sales men and women. And that our core responsibility is to sell Nigeria better than any other country (our closet competitors) in Africa. As sales men and women, we are to produce solutions to our numerous problems. Nigerians are among the most brilliant set of human beings on earth, we therefore have the human resources to sell Nigeria better (solve our problems), but for a very long time we were not told that we are all sales men and women. Neither were we told our selling role. So, when next you introduce yourself; remember to add “I am a sales man or woman. And my role is to sell Nigeria better”
God bless Nigeria. God bless all the sales men and women in Nigeria.
Until I come your way again, always remember that “your selling efforts will produce more sales revenue when they are focused on solving customers’ problems and improving their situations”.