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‘Tale Means Business: 5 Ways to Develop the Right Mindset for a Successful Business



'Tale AlimiI live and breathe entrepreneurship because I am passionate about businesses succeeding and business owners truly enjoying what they are creating and getting rewarded for it.

I became committed to helping businesses grow and succeed when I dealt with the struggles of running a small business for many years, and had to let go it go for investors when it reached over eight figures in revenues.

I remember passing a row of stores with no customers some years ago and weeping in my heart for the struggles the business owners must be facing to make ends meet and keep the business going. This was a catalyst for my mission to stop the struggle in running a business.

I am constantly studying and researching what makes businesses succeed and I have developed various programs to address these struggles, but one area that business owners have to be develop personally is their mind-set.

In my work with various clients, this is one factor that I have noticed separates the entrepreneurs that will go on to run thriving businesses from the ones that will remain in the struggle stage.

There are various ways to develop a mind-set for success in business and I will like to share 5 ways that I that I have learnt:

Have a compelling vision
When we were younger, we all had ‘ridiculous’ dreams like flying like superman or living in space but as we grew older, we were admonished to ‘be realistic’ and as we adopted this realistic perspective, we began to lose our ability to dream. As I study the stories of successful people, I have come to realize that they always started with a big dream. Their vision is usually so compelling that it drives them to keep going each day. As a business owner, your vision must be bigger than you.

I was working with a client to refine her vision some time ago, and I had to ask her to dream a lot bigger than she was currently dreaming – as I saw that she had more capacity than she believed. The reason is simple; if you don’t expect more, you will most likely not get more. Even the good book says God will do exceedingly, abundantly above all we can ask or think. So if you ask and think small in your business, you will get small.

Go out of your comfort zone
When I tell people that I am naturally an introvert, the first thing they say is ‘yeah right’. But if you ask the people I grew up with, especially my classmates in primary and secondary school, they will attest to that fact. I have just learnt growing older that you have to demand from life what you want and it will not happen if you stay in your comfort zone.

I have worked with some clients who are averse to selling or marketing themselves and unfortunately they struggle with not making enough sales. The truth is; people will only buy from prganizations or people they know. You need to go out of your comfort zone and put yourself out in front of the people you want to serve and be courageous enough to reach out for help. My mantra for selling is to build ‘KLT’ with your prospective clients. Get them to know you, like you and trust you.

Feed your faith, not your doubts
The moment you chose to become an entrepreneur, you chose to walk in an unknown path. I told someone the other day that entrepreneurship is a spiritual journey. By that I mean that we all going on a journey that we are not certain about the outcome, but we have faith that things will turn out right.

You have to constantly feed your faith by seeking inspiration from mentors or reading the success stories of people you admire. Constantly remind yourself of why you chose this path and make a habit of confessing what you want in your business and not what you don’t want

Keep the momentum
Momentum is a very important factor in business. You have to keep getting better and keep focused on achieving your goals. Your business journey is personal, so keep your focus on achieving your own goals and staying on your own lane and don’t be perturbed with competition.

I am not saying you should not be aware of what is happening around you, business terms like competitor and industry analysis are important, but I am saying remain focused on your own journey and don’t let other businesses distract you especially when you are clear about where you are going. If you are not clear, seek guidance. Check out my sessions here.

Celebrate milestones with gratitude
You don’t have to wait to achieve those big business goals to celebrate. Gratitude builds momentum and keeps you going. I personally set aside one day in a week to express gratitude to God for my progress. I notice that this keeps me positive and gives me the strength to keep going even if everything is not going as planned.

Find a way to document your milestones so that from time to time, you can look back at your journey and see how far you have come. I keep a gratitude list, I know some people who keep a journal.

Like the saying made popular by Mo Abudu; if you can think it, you can do it…it starts with having the right mindset.

'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. Oge

    June 17, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    Nice article,the problem with me is just to start.I have different vision but how to actualize it has become a problem.Tried all means that I know ,hey,it seems its not forthcoming!I hope to keep my faith alive!

    • Tale Alimi

      June 18, 2016 at 9:12 pm

      Dear Oge, My advice is start with small goals and achieve them and your confidence will grow to reach out for bigger things. Remember faith without works is dead, so start doing something. I wish you all the best.

  2. Niala

    June 17, 2016 at 6:02 pm

    Love it!
    I’m saving this writeup
    I run a business and totally find this helpful.
    Thank you Tale..your sister Bose is also amazing!

    • Tale Alimi

      June 18, 2016 at 9:13 pm

      Thank you Niala. I am glad you find it helpful. And yes Bose is awesome too!

  3. le coco

    June 17, 2016 at 7:48 pm

    so sorry to go off topic.. but I need some help frm the BN fam. I’ve been considering starting up a business.. Nd its very promising.. only thing is I need to import the products from places like the USA or China.. I will buy all the products online as I have found good websites that have been tried and trusted by close friends.. Nd people in the same line of business.. my issue is this. What is it like ordering things from outside Nigeria? will the items arrive? what is the tax like? If anyone has ever ordered something, esspecially from China.. what was your expirience.?

    • Tale Alimi

      June 18, 2016 at 9:17 pm

      Dear Le Coco, Nigeria is an import dependent, so there are so many people buying things from different countries especially China so yes your goods will most likely come in. My advice is to find a good clearing agent with experience bringing goods from China and they will guide you on the import duties. However don’t forget that the exchange rate is currently unfriendly so your items might not be competitive when they land. All the best!

  4. She Leads Africa

    June 17, 2016 at 7:57 pm

    Definitely agree with the need for a positive mindset to success! Positive self-talk and affirmation are also super important

  5. olajumoke

    June 20, 2016 at 3:02 pm

    Tale, I receive your mails on a frequent basis and it blesses me..i have some big ideas bigger than me but to start, where to look, whom to approach are my issues…. the idea is not even in my line of business. please advise…

    • She Leads Africa

      June 21, 2016 at 4:57 pm

      Hi Olajumoke, you should check out our website for advice on starting and growing a business in different sectors. We also offer coaching services and would love to help you out.

    • Tale Alimi

      June 27, 2016 at 12:04 pm

      Hi Olajumoke, kindly email me with details: [email protected]

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