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Atoke’s Monday Morning Banter: Working 9 to 5



If we lived in a world where all was right and fair, coffee would be declared as the Official World Drink. There would be no tasks assigned to anyone until the consumption of a cup of coffee. My coffee condition is so bad that I am incapable of carrying out any rational conversations without having the ALL SYSTEMS GO elixir, and it’s particularly bad on Mondays. For employees like me, it’s that time of the week when you have to execute everything you have planned out from the previous week. Some Mondays are okay, others just require an extra dose of coffee.

Monday…and the constraints that come with it… is the reason why many people say they don’t want to work ‘9-5’. There’s a presupposition that, without the forced requirements of having to go to work, there will be a lot more wiggle room for creativity and productivity. Some people are simply averse to ‘9-5’ because they don’t believe that they’d thrive in an environment where they’ll constantly take instructions from people. For some people, they say they’re not ‘morning people’ and as such, the whole going in to work at 8am is not their idea of how life should work.

While having a chat recently with a group of people, talk veered in the direction of what we all planned to do in the next 5 years. Almost everyone said they saw themselves running their own being. It seemed to be an elevation from being someone else’s employee. However, there was one person who said she was quite content being an employee. She made some very interesting points. According to her: “Entrepreneurship is not for everybody. Secondly, many people who say they’re tired of working for other people and want to chill and do their own thing are getting it all wrong. Every smart person knows that doing your own thing means putting in twice the work. It involves sleeping less and worrying more, because the success or failure of the business venture is solely dependent on how much work you put into it. Shebi when you’re in paid employment, at the end of the month, whether or not you draft 50 agreements or you browse blogs, your salary will still show. Secondly, running your own business in Nigeria involves a lot of ‘Who sabi who?’ Even when you have brilliant ideas and you miraculously get a brief, there is someone somewhere who wants a cut from the work you haven’t even started to do. Finally, personally, I thrive better in an environment where I am learning from a team of superiors and also training juniors within the framework of an organization.

At the end of that chat, I was quite intrigued by the points she made. I mean, sometimes we all see running our own business as a step up. However, we’ve heard stories of how a lot of  guys who look very nice on paper use it as a cover for doing nothing. Flash in the pan. So, girl meets guy. Girl asks guy ‘what do you do?’. Guy says “I don’t believe in 9-5. I do my own thing”. Later, girl finds out that guy isn’t actually doing anything. In fact, guy lacks the discipline that one usually gets from having to diligently work. So under the cover of ‘doing his own thing’, the guy has a lot of time to go on jaunts – constantly lounging.

So, in exploring the issue of not being naturally inclined to entrepreneurship, I remembered when I was studying at Unilag. Woodin was the fabric of rage then, and since I’d done the running around for my brother’s wedding Aso-Ebi, I figured I could buy and sell fabric for a little cash.  It was a nice experience, but not one that I’d venture into again. There was the constant challenge of having to chase people around for your money. For me, the greatest challenge was the piecemeal style of paying back. “Let me pay you 800 today and give you 700 next week Tuesday.” I was always running back to my Mum every time I needed to pick new orders.

Maybe selling clothes was just not my thing. Maybe I’ll remain a worker ant for a little while longer. Someone has to be a part of the workforce after all.

Anyway, what do you guys think? Are you a natural born Nine To Fiver or are you an entrepreneur? Share some of your fun stories and experiences within your area of network.

Have a fantastic week ahead, and don’t let Monday weigh you down.

Peace, love & cupcakes.


Photo Credit: Image grabbed from NdaniTV Instagram page.

Atoke – Writer | Lover | Noisemaker. Twitter – @atoke_

You probably wanna read a fancy bio? But first things first! Atoke published a book titled, +234 - An Awkward Guide to Being Nigerian. It's available on Amazon. ;)  Also available at Roving Heights bookstore. Okay, let's go on to the bio: With a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Swansea University, Atoke hopes to be known as more than just a retired foodie and a FitFam adherent. She can be reached for speechwriting, copywriting, letter writing, script writing, ghost writing  and book reviews by email – [email protected]. She tweets with the handle @atoke_ | Check out her Instagram page @atoke_ and visit her website for more information.


  1. dainty

    June 9, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    At the moment, 9-5 puhleassse

    • Jo!

      June 9, 2014 at 11:01 pm


  2. Payche

    June 9, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    Personally, I love to work, I have a specific number of year(s) I’ll work for anyone and after that am facing my business, I understand the nature of running a business when you don’t know much people or your level no reach, but I’ll have to settle for my entrepreneurship anytime any day. Not for the money or to be my own boss, but for the Joy, Peace and fulfillment my creative business gives me.

  3. Tru

    June 9, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    LOL!!! Atoke I thought it was only me!!! I cannot function properly without coffee or cappuccino!!!
    Truth be told, I think I’m cut out for a 9-5, and maybe doing one or two little things for myself in my spare time. I work better knowing that final decisions don’t end up on my desk

  4. pretty

    June 9, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    I am a nine to five person but if only that nine to five can be nine to five. This lagos traffic join ,na nine to nine pm. Apart from that i dont av any issue with 9-5. Meanwhile, i hate to hear i do my own thing from guys, most of them cant even define what they do. Yeye

  5. iyke

    June 9, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    ‘Maybe selling clothes was just not my thing. Maybe I’ll remain a worker ant for a little while longer’……
    That is a WRONG assertion to make, Atoke!
    It is all about mindset… a fixed mindset and a growth mindset…
    Some people might be very growth-oriented in their 9-5 career and believe in their abilities to develop and improve at work. Meanwhile, they might display a fixed mindset with regards to their health,weight and entrepreneurship and believe things like ‘I’m just not the type of person who can do her own stuff’ (Case study – Atoke et al) or, ‘I was never the slim type of lady.’ (Case Study: Eniola Badmus et al)
    Much of your success Atoke, will hinge on whether you believe that your abilities to sell can be developed versus believing that they are fixed.
    You can have both mindsets but obviously, the growth mindset is better. And, of course, that’s what I have and will encourage everybody to embrace. I run my own business (Am a young farmer, by the way) and have worked for corporations in the past as a fresh graduate from a Graduate Business School.
    ‘I AM NOT THE SORT OF PERSON’ assertion defeats the whole essence of your growth. It shouldn’t be in your vocabulary.
    Entrepreneurship is amazing ….it’s not about the failures, which to me is part of your growth, rather, start small, prove your ability to yourself in a thousand tiny ways, and let the confidence and growth mindset naturally follow from there.
    Prove it to yourself in small ways and you’ll develop the confidence that you can improve!

    • Oompa Loompa

      June 9, 2014 at 2:40 pm

      Are you from Delta state? Or is your farm in Delta state?

    • Idak

      June 9, 2014 at 3:11 pm

      Enyi, this your Eniola obsession dey vex me.
      I am the cheerleader of big women but I do appreciate that Eniola needs to lose weight for health reasons but the way you lay into her on an almost daily basis is upsetting me.
      Please take it easy.

    • Iyke

      June 9, 2014 at 3:19 pm

      Chai….Iwe ewela gi Idak Nwanne m. I no dey pick on am…na just a case study.
      Nsogbu adiroo, I no go mention her name again. Udo diri gi enyi m oma!

    • Idak

      June 9, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Enyi iwe na ewem.
      Let me inform you,that sister of mine you are eyeing here is not like Agbani o!
      Better no use your hand burn your own cable o!

    • Idak

      June 9, 2014 at 4:44 pm

      Udo diri mu na gi.

    • lizzie

      June 9, 2014 at 7:31 pm

      I couldn’t reply your comment that mentioned “the sister” directly cos there was no link to. she’s like Agbani please. #famzingmodeactivated

    • laide

      June 9, 2014 at 3:37 pm

      But Iyke don’t you think we all have our strengths and weaknesses? Some things come naturally to some, while others would struggle at the same thing.

    • iyke

      June 9, 2014 at 4:13 pm

      Absolutely! However, organizations will be more interested in how you can translate your weakness into strength. You will be so amazed how much you could do when you try.Yes, while you hold onto your strength, your ability to brush up your weaknesses is what will stand you out.
      You don’t have to go ‘ doing my own thing’ route. However, DON’T LET YOUR WEAKNESSES deter you. If I can do it, you can definitely do better.

    • Chinny

      June 9, 2014 at 5:43 pm

      You’re a young farmer as in you actually own a farm?

    • chiddy

      June 16, 2014 at 12:08 pm

      Awesome response Iyke, its all about mindset…..

  6. NIra

    June 9, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    I’m a 9-5 person, or 8.30-5 in my office. I love the order and discipline that comes with working in an organisation. Anyway, everybody cannot be an entrepreneur, I love a career in public service, and I’m on the right path.

  7. slice

    June 9, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    doing my own thing and 9 to 5 at the same time right now. hoping to gradually do my own thing full time. i think i serve my employers well, but it seems i can make more money doing my own thing and money is the koko of the matter for me

  8. BB

    June 9, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    there’s a difference between being entrepreneural- if there is anythig lik edat and pride. tho the line can be a lil blury. I dont consider myself as one to just set up a business but even for those who have it in them, it is usually helpful to work for someone and learn from them. Y use ur new business as a guinea pig? Alot of good ideas run under from lack of experience-this goes beyond text book knowledge or “I am a first class …”

  9. Oompa Loompa

    June 9, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    Ever since I moved back to Nigeria I have been constantly pressured to figure out what I can use my hands to do. I have been to so many seminars and lectures to know that its pointless starting a business just because. What need am I fulfilling? What problem am I solving? I don’t want to start a business without the passion to see it through. I apologise if i am stepping on toes but there are so many mushroom start ups/businesses in Nigeria. They have the grand opening and 3 years later the place is a dead end. I do see myself as being an entrepreneur and ideas keep bouncing around my head. But until something comes and sticks and gives me sleepless nights, I am a 9-5 person. Daddy stop pressuring me o.

  10. Me

    June 9, 2014 at 2:56 pm

    I loooove the security of a 9-5 Job especially when you love your job and are committed to it. My biggest problem is my space!! I can’t function properly with a ton of people around me. And with the new recent study that showed that employees work better when put together, most firms and offices are ditching the whole private office ishh for the cubicles in one large space. There is something about always feeling obligated to talk, smile, and prying eyes on my bella naija screen that just drains my energy!! Feels like a chore. This has sometimes made me consider starting a business I can run from the comfort of my home.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      June 9, 2014 at 3:24 pm

      “There is something about always feeling obligated to talk, smile, and prying eyes on my bella naija screen that just drains my energy!! “… hahahahahahaha!! While you’re visiting BN, they’re on the “DailyMail” website so if they pry at yours, return the favour promptly. 🙂

    • Ayaba

      July 18, 2014 at 11:01 am

      “There is something about always feeling obligated to talk, smile, and prying eyes on my bella naija screen that just drains my energy!! Feels like a chore.”
      I co-sign that.
      It seems as if you went into ma head and took that out. i always feel that way. esp the prying eyes plus you can’t take a simple deep breath, when you do u have them asking whatz up with the sigh (3 of us share an office). mcheeeew. Concerning the prying eyes, i always copy the article&comments and paste on a word document and read from there, After all my work involves a lot or report writing hence one would not be able to tell what exactly is on the word document except they come really close.

  11. oj

    June 9, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    i love the idea of doing my own thing. but right now, i’m fine with being an employee. not everyone can be a successful entrepreneur. some are very successful employees and if i turn out to be one of those, no prob.

  12. Idak

    June 9, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    I am a 9.30 to 6.30 person. My needs are not plenty. As long as I have a good enough job to meet must of my wants, I am fine. I am immune to pastors who preach entrepreneurship and make it sound like it is a sin not to own a business. I will soon start ventures that will deploy more of my God given talent and it will be completely profitless ventures. I do not have the temperament to run around chasing people and sucking ass just to get a business up and running.
    Folks say that paid employment is uncertain and unstable. I agree,it is even more unstable in the present economic climate. However, so is business.
    Some can sleep peacefully while owing every Tom,Dick and Harry. Some of us can’t blink with a tiny debt on our neck.
    Some spend more than they own calling it packaging, not all of us are comfortable with that.
    There are some business folks I admire but I wish they and the apostles of entrepreneurship will stop vilifying us 8 -5 and 9.30 to 6.30 folks like us. We are just choosing different routes to the same destination.

    • TA

      June 9, 2014 at 3:21 pm

      Thank you for voicing all my thoughts so nicely. More days to your life

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      June 9, 2014 at 4:02 pm

      🙂 I’m an 8.30am – 5/6pm’er and used to be a 7.30am-6/7/8pm’er not so long ago until I saw the light of day which advocates not sacrificing my all at the altar of a corporate body’s profit statement… In active law practise, I used to be an 8am-8pm’er because some managing solicitors are mini-dictators. However, I’ve always enjoyed the buzz of throwing myself into work and getting recognized for it at the end of the day.

      The Entrepreneurial nazis got to me too at one time, making me wonder if there was something I’m failing at by preferring paid employment but I instinctively know I’m going to suck rotten eggs at running a business simply because I haven’t yet found a passion that is going to attact income (unless we’re discussing shoes but the risk is that I’ll buy all my own products because of an embarrasing lack of self-control in that area). Briefly considered and discarded the idea of opening my own restaurant because of the commercial realities where I currently live but… well, it’s still an interesting possibility.

      At the same time, the sermons on utilizing our talents are not completely lost on me as I’m aware (& Dooney better not catch me) there’s so much potential just simmering away within each of us and that paid job isn’t always where it’s going to gloriously burst forth like a gushing, unquenchable geyser. Maybe the trick to letting it pour out is not to think of yeilding income/profit as the end goal but to stay focused on doing what you love… but then again, you can love a lot of things and just become a jack-of-all-trades with nothing in the bank.

      Oh well, you either love it enough to take a gamble or you don’t. I’m not sure I’ll trade it all in to start my own label a la Louboutin but I do fancy the thought of having an ebay shop that caters for my sisters blessed with large feet … Lord knows that as much as I love to give to charity, e get the labelled and unused ones wey I just no fit dash dem as I still dey count the money I carry take buy am….

    • Dunni Obata

      June 10, 2014 at 1:25 am

      I catsh you, yes I catsh you and for grammatical pointers, y’all go bother Dame P please, “catsh’ was written intentionally. As someone who is awake at 1.08am because I just finished working on something for myself that y’all will get to see very soon. Working for yourself is definitely harder, but it is a “harder” that is so worth it. No battling to be recognised or share praise with anyone. No having to deal with senior colleagues that don’t understand your vision, or direction. You win, it is all you and the joys are sweet, You lose it is all on you but if you are smart enough, you won’t lose in the same place too many times before you get the hang of it. So, as for you Madam. I am supposed to be in bed right now o, the spirit led me to check this post again and Voila, here’s your comment. So, I catsh you o, I catsh red handed. Find your truth, find your path, would be scary at first, but if you don’t try now when you have the spare time and possibly income with not that much responsibility that demands it, you may never and someday, you betcha, you will wonder what if. The trick I am learning is to start when you have no designs on making an income out of it. You will be amazed at how your natural ability shines through when you don’t have the desire to make money stomping on your neck putting pressure on you. I think that is why many entrepreneurs fail very quickly. It is the pressure. The pressure to make money, the pressure not to fail, the pressure to deliver and see the bank balance grow. When you have no such worries, and you do what you love for free, you shine. I would never advise anyone to trade it all in. Yes, you can jump off the ledge, but you sure must jump off that ledge with tons of baggage (time spent, experience gathered, getting your work noticed, etc) with you to slow down the fall so you don’t fall flat on your face very quickly. I used to say with all confidence that I was the employee type. It came from a place of seeing how hard my parents worked, and all the stress they battle with. My mum always smiled and said to me, you come from a long line of strong successful female entrepreneurs, and heaven forbid that you missed that gene. You just wait until you find your passion, we will have the conversation later. We had it last year and she laughed her head off.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      June 10, 2014 at 3:58 pm

      Chei, I talk am say you go catsh me. Na my guilty conscience been summon you… hahahaha! Sometime, I do wonder if that enterprenurial spirit is actually another of those things which we absorb from parental influences as both my own folks were in paid employment, which may have shaped my decision for choosing the same path of income-earning (although and saying that, my mother is a true hustler on the side. The woman has dipped her hands and feet into all kinds of money making ventures [except the “otokoto”, type oh!] that I can only bow to her sharp commercial instincts).

      Truly loving your analogy about jumping off the ledge with baggage, experience, etc which slows your fall and what I’ll add to that is the baggage won’t only slow your fall but will also give you a platform to stand on top off when you eventually land. So you’re not starting from the bottom, you’ve actually gathered enough material for your foundation to build your way right back to and even past that ledge which you were standing at. We should totally go into a business together and start speaking at motivational seminars. Mama Dooney will fully support the new venture, this I’m particularly sure of :)…

    • Dunni Obata

      June 10, 2014 at 10:47 pm

      hahahahahha. I was lead by the Spirit ni. Love your angle on the jumping off the ledge with baggage. We should truly go into motivational speaking together. Lord knows in this my short time of being a food blogger, I have tons to speak about. My Mama would be right there behind us, asking for her 20% manager’s cut. That woman can make business out of sand in a dessert. loooooool

    • Magz

      June 10, 2014 at 2:37 pm

      I am a 7:25 to 4:30 person (sometimes 5:30, 6:00) etc. I love being an employee and getting recognised for it at the end of the day. I admire those who run their own businesses because I know how difficult it can be. Do I have a dream of having my own business? Yes but not now, not even in five years’ time. If everybody decides to be entrepreneur, I wonder who will be left to work for them. I will like to do something on my own while I am being an employee but I am still trying to make time for that. I will just advise the pastors preaching about being an entrepreneur to also preach about how to manage the finances, how to manage debtors, how to manage creditors, how to do a treasure hunt for investors, tax and all of that. Abeg it is not that easy

  13. TA

    June 9, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    @ Atoke, I don’t Mondays,well most Mondays. LOL! Yeah,I know am weird but then again I love my job. I do not have an entrepreneurship spirit at all so its not my thing. I hate coffee but love lattes. 🙂

    • Iyke

      June 9, 2014 at 3:57 pm

      Now that’s an experience!
      Welcome to the Latte drinkers’ CLUB.
      Make my day ….make me smile everyday with a cup of Sweet Matcha Green Tea Latte. The steady boost of healthy energy that it gives all through the day is beyond belief.

    • Bobosteke & Lara Bian

      June 9, 2014 at 5:40 pm

      Just feature in a free ad for them already… (smiles)

  14. FunkyW

    June 9, 2014 at 4:17 pm

    I currently work 9-5 and its stressful but not as stressful and challenging as being an entrepreneur, my parents are entrepreneurs and heaven knows I have seen the good, bad and ugly side of business in Nigeria. There have been really rich days and vice versa , mind you that’s not because of extravagance or wasteful spending but you can’t just control all factors. You have dishonest employees that are out to ruin the business, no electricity, government’s arbitrary laws, bank loans, inflation from all angles, … on the good side there’s flexible timing, independent decisions, sole bearer of profit (or loss)

  15. AA

    June 9, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    The only thing coffee does for me is kill my appetite, which I suppose is #fitfam compliant. It messes with my nerves in a counter-productive way.
    I have been on both sides of the fence and they both have their pros and cons. While one has the “certainty” which you can plan around, the other is well, not so certain because no client no cash pay. During those no pay period, i’m tempted to think of getting a salary-paying job, then i remember the flexibility and freedom i enjoy, it counts for something even though i cant bank it. So as a fallback, i try to go the multiple streams of income route but even at that i pace myself cos i dont want to be bugged down with too much work that i cant find time for myself. A dividend could get paid just in the nick of zero account balance or I could sell someone a beaded piece or cook. However the first thing i learnt when i made the switch was a prudent lifestyle, live well below your income, the fine balance of function and indulgence and debt-free. Not every time budget, some times indulge. Buying on credit? Hian, odikwa dangerous if you’re unsure when the next job will come in.

  16. ada

    June 9, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    i just resigned from an 8-5pm in victoria island, lagos to go back to school for a full-time professional certification. i also have a business which requires a lot of sewing. its is possible to combine being an employee and an entrepreneur though it depends on the free time your job allows you

  17. lila

    June 9, 2014 at 4:53 pm

    @iyke i totally agree with one not limiting oneself to a particular mindset. however as Shakespeare wrote “to thine own self be true”
    Some people are built for 9-5 whilst some are not. Some people like risks, others don’t. Some people have great networking skills whilst some will prefer to stay in the shadows. there is nothing we cant do,but its not all things we should.
    what i am saying is that we all should identify our strengths and weaknesses then use them to our advantage.

  18. Bobosteke & Lara Bian

    June 9, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    I love to work in big organizations where I can get lost in plain sight. As much I am questioning my 8:30 to 4:30 right now, the major attraction is that I can poke my nose in other departments and learn from them. It has also put me in touch with respected men and women in Nigeria whom I may not have met otherwise.

    My problem however is that I am lazy. But it is laziness born out of fear of myself and my abilities. I am very talented and would probably do well in anything I set my mind to but try telling that to someone who has a Ph.D. in talking herself out of anything . I love my job but I know I am just killing time, until I can gather my shit together and make moves. I went through some damaging experiences (who doesn’t) but I’m slowly gathering the old Bobo back. It was a really humbling to learn that I was not self sufficient, that I am not immune to lack of self confidence, feelings of defeat, self loathing, insecurity and good old fashioned jealousy. Funny though, nobody could tell what a shithole I had dug for myself. The day I started wearing heels again I knew I was on the road to healing (homonyms!). Sometimes I get impatient to be most of who I used to be but then I remember I did not lose myself in one day so I have to be very nurturing and careful. I shacked up with one of my old flames, writing (can you tell?) and we’ve been having a good romp. First time I wrote a full page, I wept; for all the times I felt I could not get it up (penis’ wanted) and the times I wasted feeling sorry for the world that I was in it. I’m not as ready as I want to be, but boy I’m I giddy that I will be soon.

    So yes to a 9:00 – 5:00, and every other skill that God gave me that can bring in The Money not just some change.

    • TA

      June 9, 2014 at 11:58 pm

      @ Bobos*hugs. You sure can write sha! No flattery or anything…you can write. See how you were waxing lyrical up there. Try sending articles to newspapers or online forums where you can get feedback. Starting a blog sounds very cliche-ish to an aspiring writer,but you have nothing to lose in reality. Facebook notes too can be useful feedback. Add writers you like their works and tag them in your notes. You never know who will read your stories. Just keep writing. * -:)

  19. Woah!

    June 9, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    Great article, Atoke! In Nigeria, I think some people are quick to write off the merits of a 9 to 5. And who can blame them – many 9 to 5 jobs, especially the “one-man business ones” are glorified plantation farms. Some banks are not much better as some workers are treated as paper pushing worker bees. It is that tambolo mentality. You spend hours in the commute to work, you get there and sign in; then you do highly repititve tasks where sometimes you are bellowed at by clients or power-mad higher-ups; you are lucky if you have time to go for lunch; you work past 5pm; remain in the office till like 7pm to wait out the crazy Island to Mainland traffic which aims to take another 240 minutes of your life in mind-numbing traffic; you leave and spend another 240 minutes in crazy go-slow; you get home and NEPA has taken light. You make Indomie noodles in the dark.

    However under the right role, in a thriving mutlinational, a 9 to 5 job can be a rewarding experience. Here are a few:

    1. Many companies (just not in Nigeria) offer work from home options where you can log into the company system via VPN and work from remote locations. This helps one avoid the long commutes and gives flexibility to pursue a “side hustle”

    2. Depending on how high up you are, and the size of the company you work for, some companies offer profit sharing and bonuses. So the tenacityand quality of your work is rewarded with a share of the company’s profits. I once worked for a firm where you were given a bonus dependent on 3 indices – your performance, your division/department’s performance and then the company performance. So some employees made up to 60% of their annual salary in one annual lumpsum payment. Someone making $80,000 a year could walk away with 48,000. Of course, Uncle Sam (or FIRS) will take their taxes, but thats not bad for a 9-5 job. One could sew that into an investment vehicle, capital projects, mortgage, home building, settle family quarrel, flenjor etc.

    3. Discipline is required to work a 9 -5 job. Try working as a lawyer in a law firm, or in a “one man business” where you are a jack of all trades, or for one of the Big 4 consultancies (EY, Deloitte ,PWC.) No be small thing o. Where best to hone the skills and experience needed for your own business in the future, than starting out as a worker ant. Many great business men first did 9-5s first – I believe Steve Jobs worked for IBM back in the day.

    Many people in Nigeria use the “work on my own” cloak to lie about their joblessness or lounging. I will speak for lawyers. Law school equips you with the know-how to hit the ground running for certain simpler aspects of law – helping client incorporate or register businesses at the CAC, do simple land searches etc. However a law firm will help teach some of the more technical parts of the law – advanced legal drafting, finance and security law etc. Best to do a short stint at a good law firm before going on your own, especially if you want to be bigtime, not charge and bail.

    4. Having a business is great, but it is not for everyone. What is your contingency plan if the business fails, and your wife Mama Nwaolodo is a housewife. How will Nwaolodo’s fees get paid. I personally prefer (especially in Nigeria) if one spouse does business and the other does a 9-5 hustle. At least until the business doing well enough to yield profits that would enable the owner store up a considerable nest egg.

    5. A 9 to 5 can helps with networking (both personal and business) and exposes you to different industries, [personalities and ways of doing things (okay maybe not so much if this is the Nigerian civil service).I know people who worked diligently under their boss at work. When the boss left to form his own company, he took the workers under him who became directors and shareholders at this new company. Or bosses who got political appointments and took workers under them as special assistants and aides. This is an added advantage.

  20. Bobosteke & Lara Bian

    June 9, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    I love to work in big organizations where I can get lost in plain sight. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not afraid of the crowd but I choose to be behind the camera. As much I am questioning my 8:30 to 4:30 right now, the major attraction is that I can poke my nose in other departments and learn from them. It has also put me in touch with respected men and women in Nigeria whom I may not have met otherwise.

    My problem however is that I am lazy. But it is laziness born out of fear of myself and my abilities. I am very talented and would probably do well in anything I set my mind to but try telling that to someone who has a Ph.D. in talking herself out of anything . I love my job but I know I am just killing time, until I can gather my shit together and make moves. I went through some harrowing experiences (who doesn’t) but I’m slowly gathering the old Bobo back. It was a really humbling to learn that I was not self sufficient; that I am not immune to lack of self confidence, feelings of defeat, self loathing, insecurity and good old fashioned jealousy. Funny though, nobody could tell what a shithole I had dug myself in. The day I started wearing heels again I knew I was on the road to healing (homonyms!). Sometimes I get impatient to be most of who I used to be but then I remember I did not lose myself in one day so I have to be very nurturing and careful. I shacked up with one of my old flames, writing (can you tell?) and we’ve been having a good romp. First time I wrote a full page, I wept; for all the times I felt I could not get it up (penis’ wanted) and the times I wasted feeling sorry for the world that I was in it. I’m not as ready as I want to be, but boy I’m I giddy that I will be. Soon.

    So yes to a 9:00 – 5:00, and every other skill that God gave me that I choose to put to use.

  21. Mzreeny

    June 9, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Variety they say, is the spice of life. Everyone cannot be slim else we won’t appreciate being slim. Everyone cannot be rich. Everyone cannot be intelligent. Everyone cannot be entrepreneurs. We all have different gifts. All for the betterment of one another. So it’s in no way a crime or a limitation- according to iyke- that some people are very comfortable working in a 9-5 job.

  22. neon

    June 9, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    been on both sides, i quit my 5- 9 (yes it was 5am to 9pm) high paying job, so now even though i am broke running my own business, nothing beats the flexibility that comes with it. gym on monday mornings, school run, home before the husband etc.

  23. DAD

    June 9, 2014 at 9:13 pm

    Recently, I had a conversation with a colleague at work who is non-Nigerian and she wanted to know why most young Nigerians these days just “waste” their degrees doing “runs” i.e doing their own thing. When all they are doing is living off their partners as these guys are not doing nothing. Yet they have Masters in Engineering and all sorts. I told her it is the need to make fast money. Now we all know the saying nothing good comes easy. Yes it doesn’t. For the business minded why really do you want to go into business or why do you want to ditch the 9-5 for runs? is it for the money or for the flexibility if you answer yes to any the aforementioned then I will advise thinking twice before quitting that cushy J-O-B.
    SA said she was yet to find a passion which she wanted to pursue or I would parapharase her by saying she is yet to find a vaccum in the community, society or world at large that she feels a need to fill. Most succesful business men and I mean the Forbes billionaires will tell you that having a successful business is about meeting needs. Once you find a need and the means to meet that need, passion is just an accompaniment because you taking time to find a need and ways of meeting it already shows passion; and money is only bound to follow. The goal whether it is 9-5 or doing runs should be meeting needs, if you are looking for flexibility then you will probably never show up to work at your business. If it is money, a very successful entrepreneur once told me when you go into business for the sole purpose of making money just like everything else you chase is bound to ran from you so will money. I love what I do and yes for now I am doing the corporate ladder deal aggresively. I know eventually I will like to fulfil and meet needs with my own business and yes I am well aware that will involve same amount of effort if not more than I am currently putting in but until then I am very much ok with preparing and saving for such a time.

  24. Gorgeous

    June 9, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    I am a hybrid i believe. 🙂

  25. OmogeNaija

    June 9, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Entrepreneurship and Paid employment are on different sides of the divide, each has unique sets of advantages and disadvantages trust me when I say this because I’ve been on both sides of the divide, I compared the two a while ago . In my opinion, employers like entrepreneurial minded people because they are growth catalysts.
    I’m paid employment/training right now, entrepreneurship is still my thing

  26. anonymous

    June 10, 2014 at 8:03 am

    I loveeee ghosting around this site and savoring all the comments (anonymously of course) but I especially love you, Idak and Ms SA. You all are what social networking should be about: proper and right comments, agree to disagree amicably and airing your views by paying attention to others. Well done guys. Bella should reward or recognize or award you guys with something already.

    • Ayaba

      July 18, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      Yeah they give very good comments, i will add Jcgirl, Iyke and Dr.N to the list. Idak actually responded to onw of ma dilemma dat i shared on BN though i posted it under anoda name. it actually gave me some inexplicable peace

  27. Noksis

    June 11, 2014 at 10:55 am

    Not everyone is an entrepreneur and not everyone is a 9 to 5 person. I don’t see myself as an entrepreneur. I have plans for the future which doesn’t involve been an entrepreneur. I am currently a 9 to 5 person which i see as means to an end, because i am learning from superiors and sub ordinates and have the liberty of building my capacity and earning more degrees. However my point is wherever you are do it well, with the whole of your heart and achieve excellence because that is what makes you stand out and break even. You must not be an entrepreneur to do so.
    I noticed young people these days look at the glam and flexibility of entrepreneurship and jump into it, not knowing how it was achieved. There is a huge price usually paid too heavy to mention. Just because it appears successful doesn’t meant it has always been or actually is.
    Folks be sure of what you want. And whatever you are doing , do it well.

  28. tee

    June 11, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    unfortunately this comment is prolly going to get overlooked because all the commentators are long gone. but toke, that line about ‘i dont do 9-5, i just want to do my own thing is a SCAM!!!! Babes, if you hear it run for your dear life. after 6years of marriage, 3 kids and a mountain load of debt, i can tell you for free, dont fall for it. he prolly just wants to layabout for the rest of his life while you slave for his sorry, lazy ass. i married this guy with 2 masters degrees from the UK and he hasnt held a job down for longer than 2months since we got married. i just want to do my own thing is hang out with other jobless guys, spend their parents money and yours, be responsible for nothing and to no one, leave you to pay all the bills and i emphasise on the ALL. in fact, this topic deserves its own episode. let me carry my bitterness to Jesus. abeg. a word is enough!

    • Rosy

      June 13, 2014 at 8:29 am

      Be strong sister, you are not the only one experiencing this. By God’s grace, you will find away out. God bless you.

    • Idak

      June 16, 2014 at 10:02 pm

      Hello tee,

      Please allow me to give you a big warm e-hug.
      Looking at your case from afar, a guy who was disciplined enough to earn two masters degree but too lazy to make an effort at earning an income? I think there are some underlying problems there.
      Maybe some tough love from his rich parents and yourself might be necessary,at least in the short term.

    • Bibi

      June 23, 2014 at 5:39 pm

      I say Yes to tough love.

  29. Ayaba

    July 18, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    As per the article, i work 8:00 to 17:00 (8:00-14:00/16:00 sometimes). i have always envisioned my self in this type of setting. I prefer my money to work for me…meaning i prefer to invest and receive my dividends while i do my 8:00 – 17:00 job. Currently pondering and doing my research on what to invest in. One Day is One Day.

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