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‘Tale Alimi: 5 Ways to Get Ahead

Tale Alimi



I meet people every day who are seeking to get ahead in life. Ahead for some might be a new job, for some it might be a promotion on their current job and for others it might be more profit or growth in their business. For some people getting ahead might be an intangible achievement like finding the right relationship or losing weight. The truth is we are all constantly seeking ways to make progress and get ahead in life.

Before you start the journey of getting ahead, you must ask yourself why? Your motive has to be strong enough and important enough to ‘you’ to get you motivated to take action. You have to want it for yourself and not because someone told you it is the logical thing to do. Once you have clarified your why and you are ready to get ahead, here are 5 things you should do:

Surround Yourself with Positive People
Research has shown that ‘Man’ is the specie that is most prone to the opinions of others. Our lives usually go in the direction of our most dominant thoughts and our thoughts are usually influenced by the voices we allow speak to us. So who are you allowing to speak to you? Which voices are you listening to? You need people around you who would encourage and challenge you to take steps and make decisions to get ahead. As Brian Tracy said; your life is the average of the 5 people you surround yourself with, so consciously make a decision to surround yourself with positive people who would propel you ahead and not negative people who would slow you down.

Invest in Yourself
The most important investment you would make is an investment in yourself. By this I mean an investment in your personal development. Material things get old or worn out, but an investment in knowledge never grows old. If you want to get ahead, invest in learning and acquiring the knowledge you need that would increase your value. You can get knowledge by reading books, investing in courses and training programs. Always set learning goals and work towards achieving it and you would find yourself moving ahead.

Find a Mentor or Coach
A mentor should be someone who has achieved what you want to achieve or something similar to what you want to achieve. A coach should be someone who can guide you to achieve what you want to achieve and hold you accountable through the process. You need these people in your life because they would help to reduce your learning curve and you don’t have to spend years trying to find out how to achieve something someone else has already achieved. There are various ways of getting mentored by someone you don’t have direct access to, some of the ways are: reading their book or written information and attending their programs or events they speak in. The important thing is to identify a mentor and be committed to learning from them. Getting a coach is straight forward as you can contact them and find out about their services and their fee packages. Some coaches have this information on their websites.

Embrace Excellence
Excellence is the quality of being outstanding and extremely good. People who are outstanding always stand out! And when you stand out, you would most likely get ahead. Excellence is not perfection; it is a decision to be the best you can be in what you do. If you run a business, strive to be excellent in offering your product and services. If you work a job, strive to do and be the best at what you do. A lot of people are satisfied with doing ‘just enough’, so if you do just enough, you would be like most people. If you want to get ahead, decide to be excellent at what you do.

Keep moving
There is a lot of conversation about work life balance and while it is great to make time for various areas of your life, it is difficult to be balanced and mobile. Sharon Letcher: Author of Think and grow rich for women (Co-author of Rich dad, poor dad) say that balance is a myth. She says if you are balanced, you are not moving. The words ‘get ahead’ depicts motion, so movement is important to get ahead. Movement could mean trying something new, getting new information, creating a new product or service etc. Whatever it means to you, you have to keep moving.

If you are looking to get ahead in your business, check out these free business resources HERE

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Vadymvdrobot

'Tale Alimi is the Co-founder and current CEO of Owoafara, a fund matching and business support platform for African MSME's. She is also the Lead strategist of Tale Alimi Global; a strategy consulting boutique focused on working with visionary and forward thinking SME's to take their business from small to scale. She is the author of Uplevel and her latest book Small to Scale. She has a Masters in Business Administration from Lagos business school, a certificate in personal coaching from the coaching academy UK. She is a social innovation fellow with the startingbloc institute in the United States. When she is not thinking about innovative business models, she is an avid fitness enthusiast. Learn more about her new startup Owoafara:( Get daily business inspiration when you follow her on twitter ( and get an insight into her life on Instagram (


  1. Stanley

    October 9, 2015 at 7:46 pm

    Great tips there.
    To get ahead you need to also know when to invest your time in something; some things are better outsourced.
    You may be very intelligent and can learn anything you set your mind to, but sometimes you are better off outsourcing and concentrating on your area of expertise. This way to stand to save time instead of trying to reinvent the wheel.

    Recently a friend of mine was trying to design a logo for her new site. She sent me a sample after hours of work. The logo was amateurish at best, I frankly told her she was better off giving the job to some else who specializes in that kind of work and concentrate instead on writing great contents for her site.

    Use your time wisely; time is money

  2. SoniaPaloma

    October 9, 2015 at 8:39 pm

    Just what I needed to read. Well-done!

  3. Tosin

    October 10, 2015 at 11:08 am

    Excellent. Excellent.
    TO recast this:

    – choose people to connect with (e.g. if it’s school and you want to become a slacker, choose to hang out with slackers; if you want to become a popularjingo, make the effort to know them and become among; if you want to do better in class, befriend the top three, etc) say you want to be a rich trader, you’ll get there faster if you hang out with rich traders. i want to be a great person, so i choose great people, positive people.

    – don’t eat your seed yam. for example Nigeria pumped oil and spent it on swagger – hennessy and designers, cars and foolishness. a wise person will plant the seed yam so as to have yam to eat tomorrow. READ SOMETHING, it doesn’t kill. Learn. Give. Do some things for tomorrow, not everything yields fruit now now.

    – I let every great person mentor me. From Alexander the Great in the movie, to Jesus Christ in the Bible…from James Joyce to Cleopatra. from CEOs to celebrities. Mathematicians and Architects. Mum and Dad. I use and dump freely 🙂 Nobody is a perfect authority and nobody is the one template for me. A lot of your teachers will teach you a lot of nonsense if you just take their word as gospel. even the gospel.
    And yet, even the imperfections of these people are very inspiring to me:
    One of my favourites, Woodrow Wilson, was an academic who extended the US presidency to leadership for the world when he created the League of Nations, basically a compact for ‘world peace’ yet he didn’t balance with his need for health so he actually died doing this work.
    Saddam Hussein was a hardworking, tough, nationalist, poetic guy, a renaissance man, a loving father, who became an ethnic-cleansing despot.
    James Joyce, as talented as he was and as much as his country celebrates him till today 100 years after, was a broke perpetual debtor.
    Jesus Christ said love one another, but his words were twisted to become the basis of massacres.
    So sad.
    Sometimes I don’t know why people like looking for formal mentorship, like gimme gimme gimme. People call me like come and talk to my group, my students, our club, or whatever. Part of me is like fu* you go read my book. I mean, you want to learn but you want the teacher to drop every ounce of his/her blood just because of you, seriously? Shu, I make my students work harder than me (that’s the secret 😉 )

    – On excellence, look at Jesse Jagz, he’s always self-critical. He does great stuff then feels it’s not great enough. That is excellence. Look around you tho, never seen a less self-critical bunch as many Nigerian elite. People just go about fronting like they’re all that, when I know people who are better and yet are not quite ready to announce their competence to the world. Let’s call it The Spirit Of Branding. I have faith and so I brand my incompetence and don’t feel bad about it. Upsets my stomach.

    – Nothing to say on keeping it moving. If you need a break, take a break. The earth will keep turning.

    I do realize this is too long. Sorry. Love.
    PS I went through and cleaned up the language for the kids. Apologies.

  4. Michonne

    October 10, 2015 at 11:22 am

    Hey Tale! Why are the pictures always that of mixed race/light skinned women? #lovedarkskin

    • Karen

      October 10, 2015 at 9:21 pm

      How is this relevant to the article?

  5. Yins lizzy

    October 10, 2015 at 11:29 am

    Wooow dat was awesome,dis came on time just d kind of info i needed.well done

  6. naija news

    October 10, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    Wooow dat was awesome

  7. Célline Mademoiselle

    October 11, 2015 at 11:19 am

    As cameroonian girl I do like coming back to Bella Naija website because of those kind of articles (I do like gossips too). It’s deep and helpful.
    Thank you BN for sharing !

  8. Dee-there-seems-to-now-be-2-Dees :)

    October 14, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    A strong motive can sure help overcome the fear that often accompanies making some necessary moves.

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