What do you do when there is a new book written by one of Africa’s most successful businessmen? Well here is what; you get a copy as soon as possible and read it! That is exactly what we at did after last week’s successful launch of Africa Rise And Shine by Jim Ovia.
Now just because this is a really special book, we hereby present you with this special review; one in a series of reviews to come. So, sit back and enjoy.
First and foremost, Mr Jim is a really good storyteller! Right from the first word on the page, you’d realise you are not only about to get entertained but also educated and inspired all at once.
Speaking of inspiration, that is what this entire book is essentially about. In other words, it is about inspiring entrepreneurs to go ahead and accomplish great things just like Mr Ovia has done. Just think about it – who would have imagined that a young fatherless boy from Agbor (Jim Ovia), would have grown up to become the great man that he is today? Mind you, the bank he founded is today valued at about $16 billion.
Jim Ovia’s Africa Rise And Shine is indeed a book of hope, much as it is a guide to entrepreneurial success; we will get to that shortly. The book is also, perhaps, the greatest piece of PR ever written about the African business landscape. As the authour noted in the beginning of chapter one, he intentionally set out to redefine the narrative about Africa through the portrayal of a continent with immense opportunities; a place where a village boy could start and grow a world-class business.
“It is not necessary to be born rich or in influential circles to achieve success”
In the book, you will read about how Mr Ovia started Zenith Bank Plc. Meanwhile, prior to establishing the bank, he had come from loosing his father at an early age in life to having struggle through life’s hurdles with the help of his mother and older brother. As he graduated from school, the expectation was high for him to succeed even though he basically had nothing to succeed with. Yet, he succeeded!
A closer look at Mr Ovia’s many advice to entrepreneurs
As already noted above, Africa Rise And Shine was written, among other things, to serve as a guide to entrepreneurs everywhere in the world. As such, it is a book replete with advice and wise sayings, many of which we will share with you now.
“My greatest hope is to demonstrate through example that an entrepreneur is, in essence, a self-made entity who may well be cultivating skills and honing instincts years before identifying them as business inclinations.”– Ovia
- There is the need to always for entrepreneurs to listen to their instincts because it can never deceive them.
- Entrepreneurship is not an easy ride. But despite the adversity you will surely face, you must be determined until success is achieved.
- Never undermine the importance of a powerful brand, Mr Ovia says. According to him, every entrepreneur must endeavour to design a brand that can stand out and drive success. Just think of the name “Zenith Bank”! That’s like a success all the way to $16 billion and counting.
- You must start something first whilst expecting success to follow. Never be deterred by the limitations.
- You must identify the local problems within your local environment and start solving them first. When you succeed in doing that, foreign problems will come seeking your local solutions.
- Do not be quick to launch your product/service. Ensure to do your research well and strategise every single action before starting.
- Needless to say, you must be very innovative, Mr Ovia says.
- You must network if you want to succeed as an entrepreneur.
- Be passionate about what you do.
- Lastly, be very grateful.