ENTREPRENEURSHIP - The Way Forward for African Youth

By Ebenezer Awuah

We know that starting a new business is entrepreneurship, but its theoretical definition is the ability and readiness to develop, organize and run a business enterprise, along with any of its uncertainties in order to make a profit.

The colonial system of education that we inherited from our colonial masters did not help us in learning skills or anything about starting a business. They wrote for us books that were irrelevant to our needs.

You went to school and learnt about the parts of a cockroach or parts of a flower. You learnt about things that would not benefit you in life but would make you always dependent on them.

The system in place was that you strived to achieve good academic laurels and got employed by government or a company. They would give you a salary that would make you always work for them till you become old, retire and then die.

How would this non-productive system of education, producing thousands of school leavers annually without proper skills to earn a decent income, help the citizens and the country in the long run? It would end up turning out a country of poor people with a high rate of unemployment that would in turn breed criminals.

In his book titled Rich Dad Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki focuses on a poor dad whose aim is to get the best academic grades to secure a white collar job whilst a rich dad’s aim is to gain financial freedom to make money work for him. The rich dad dwells on ways of using money as a tool for wealth development.

Focus on doing your own business

The above scenario brings out two contrasting situations in which one must work to survive. The poor dad’s situation is one which appears to be the fate of majority of students who complete school and the youth in general.

Learning a skill brings you out of the poor dad’s situation. You learn a skill to develop yourself to provide a service which others need and get paid for it. This is the starting point in entrepreneurship. There are many more things to learn.

Entrepreneurship is a wide subject and I am not here to teach it but to draw the attention of everyone to its necessity.

You cannot become an entrepreneur just because you want to. Many things are involved in becoming one. Enthusiasm, skills, money are basic necessities.

The government of any country cannot keep on absorbing people annually to give them employment. People want it that way but it’s not practicable for any government. But you must survive that is why it becomes necessary to start your own small business.

Funding

The most obvious obstacle to starting an own business is funding. You can write the best Business Plan but without funding you will put it back in your drawer.

The government of Ghana under a Youth Entrepreneurship Program recently provided funds for the start up of some best business plans written by the youth under the program.

Without funding like the above to let your business plan see the light of day you have to borrow from family and friends who will be willing to lend you money to supplement your own resources, or just tailor your plan according to your pocket so that you can get something done.

The devil finds job (not a good one) for idle hands so my call goes to all entrepreneurs who can afford, to sponsor one youth who shows enthusiasm in also becoming an entrepreneur. This will help a lot in reducing unemployment and in turn reduce the incidence of crime in Africa in general.

 May God bless abundantly those who respond to this call.

 

 

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Ebenezer Awuah is a retired clerk who has passion for writing on life issues and topics of enlightenment. Now consultant for transportation business in Ghana. Based at Accra and Koforidua.

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