I made this article on request. Check the thumbnail image above. This was the reply a good friend @bia.birch made on an article I wrote about self-employment and entrepreneurship. She asked to know more about my story of self-reliance and freedom. Hence, this post.
It is a long journey. A really long journey with lots of challenges along the way. But hey, Am not going to make a lengthy article on this. I will make it as short as possible. So let me start from the period after I completed National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), a compulsory national service for university graduates in Nigeria.
Post NYSC: 2017-2019
My name is Charles. I studied Computer Science in school. While I was still in the university, I always had my sights set on starting up a small IT firm and running this business until it becomes a big-time employer of labor. Somehow deep inside, I always hated to work for any organization. I always wanted to be my own boss. So after I completed the 1 year compulsory NYSC, I did not rush into the labor market like my colleagues. Instead, I decided to reach out to small businesses to educate them on how social media marketing could positively affect their business. I was running Facebook sponsored ads for some of them that agreed to come on Facebook. I also reached out to other businesses that are yet to come online to have a website designed for them. I was and still into social media marketing, web designing, blogging and other IT related stuff. Back then, I was making real effort to raise funds to rent an office apartment and register my business with the government and other logistics needed to set up the business. It was really tough.
I finished NYSC on december 2016. By may 2017, I had enough funds to pay for 1 year office rent. My IT business was located at the center of the city, in Aba, Abia State, Nigeria. I called it Rytecliq Technologies. I designed a website for it which you can still check out - http://rytecliqtech.co/. By then, I did not have all the computer hardware and office furniture needed to run the business at full scale. But I was happy to have started my own firm. I excited to have 2 office desks, 2 laptop computers, 3 desktop computers and a few other hardware. I continued to run the start-up with a friend who has the same vision as mine. Slowly, but steadily, we were able to convince small business owners to use our services. Over the last few years of our existence, I and my friend have been able to grow our business an widen our areas of operation. The road has not always been smooth, there have been challenges along the way. Currently, we are facing the biggest challenge ever - we lost our office apartment.
2019 and our office accommodation issues
Last year was really a big time for me and my friend as we push RyteCliq Technologies. We were able to hit record many positive results. We were able to procure more computer equipment since we have lately included IT training as one of our core services. We also have more businesses that allowed us to work for them - like design their website or run their Facebook campaign. However, towards the ending on November 2019, we were faced with an unexpected challenge. We were asked to move. Yes, the landlord has sold the office building without enough notice. A big transport company bought the it at a huge fee. The new landlord - the transport company - has asked us to vacate the property by January 15th, 2020. It was a huge shock we were never prepared for.
We have been making efforts to secure a new office apartment. However, getting a new place in an ideal location is tough, plus the unexpected expenses involved in moving. Property agents in this part of the world make securing a new business apartment difficult by asking for exorbitant fees. Well, we have been able to secure a new place, but are yet to finalize the paper work and other logistics. We hope to be through by second week of February. Right now, we have moved our office equipments and furniture to a temporary location until we finalize our deals for the new office apartment.
What I do now
I still work hard to secure a new office apartment. Currently, we run lots of online training classes on Dropshipping, web designing, Facebook marketing, blogging, blockchain business, etc. I still write a lot. I hope to continue offering quality IT services to whoever will accept to work with us. Challenges are there to be overcome, but should not distract us from focusing on the vision. In a little time from now, I hope to grow stronger and get a bigger better, office apartment. I cant wait to send pictures of my new place.
My motivation and determination
I have read about several multi-nationals and I discovered that they started small. Henry Ford has always been a source of inspiration for me. They all faced challenges similar or bigger than the ones I face now. But one good thing I learn from them is this inner zeal never to give up. There undying vision and drive to achieve set goals keep them going even when things go bad.
I want to look back on the years with smiles that I did not let challenges derail me on this chosen path of entrepreneurship. I want to be a source of inspiration to upcoming young people that want to thread this path. I want to inspire them with my story and help them learn that things will not always fall into place for them. But that with determination, commitment and hard-work, we all can overcome our challenges. I have determined to keep on going and fight with the last drop of blood to achieve my visions and goals. No matter how hard it gets, challenges will only make me tough each one I overcome.
A word of encouragement
No matter who we are or where we come from, we can complete our journey to freedom. Everyone faces challenges of some sort in business or personal life. Some people struggle with chronic illness, loss of job, family issues, economic hardship, oppressive government, etc. No matter what you go through right now, do not let your hands drop. You can only win if you fight to the end. when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. The only person that can stop you is you. And since I am not ready to give up my long-held vision of freedom and self-reliance, I can only move forward and not shrink back. You too can if you do not give up!