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Nkechi Alade: Find Out How to Escape the 3-Year Lifespan Zone



So after years of stalling and procrastinating, you finally decide to start your business, Halleluyah! But then, you hear something that scares the life out you. “The average lifespan of a Nigerian business is THREE years”


Many people take the entrepreneurship route because they think it’s their only way out of the struggles of 9-5, and see it as their soft landing or an opportunity to relax.

Relaxing and having time for YOU is a good thing, but being an entrepreneur may be one of the most difficult jobs on planet earth. If care is not taken, you may end up being a victim of some common mistakes which most entrepreneurs make –
killing your business before it ever began. You are pushed into the “Three Year Lifespan” category; gone and forgotten. To avoid falling into this category you need to learn about and avoid these mistakes many entrepreneurs make.

Here, Just For the Money
It would be a huge lie to say that we are all not in business with the aim of making money; however, it’s not entirely about money for a number of people.

One of the biggest mistakes any entrepreneur can make is ignoring their true passion and embarking on the business for the sole purpose of making money. Those who do this are never really successful. How? They never get any sense of fulfilment and believe me; money alone will not comfort you in the way feeling fulfilled can.

What If I Fail
Yes we get it, you are scared and you have every right to be. You quit your job and invested EVERYTHING including your time, money and resources into a path you have never been before.

What if I fail? What if no one buys my products or service? What if competitors run me out of business? All these questions come to your mind, and the normal reaction is fear of the unknown.
However, you never know until you try and fear will take you nowhere. You have given the venture your all already, so why not work hard to make it worth it.

Give your business your all and remember that the best way to conquer your fear is by doing it anyway; but, don’t let the fear of failure in your business stop you from giving it your all. Remember, the best way to overcome fear is to do the thing you’re afraid of anyway.

I’m a Perfectionist
Remember that this is your first attempt at doing that particular thing; so, no matter how much you try or prepare, you cannot attain perfection in your business. You may never have it all together at the exact moment you want it, but do it anyway.

There are areas that you will be on top of your game: areas where you are just hanging in there, and areas you know almost nothing about at times. It’s okay not to know, what is not okay is not being willing to learn.

Pursuing perfection in your business will drive you crazy and focusing on crossing every “t” and dotting the “i” won’t make you appreciate the things that are actually going on great in your business.

Success is here and now
Expecting success or financial returns right away from your business is setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. Having that confidence and the drive to succeed quickly is great, but you shouldn’t expect these results right away.

It takes a long time to grow a business and it takes an even longer time to make money from it. Having this in mind will give you the patient and resilience you need to hold on in case things are not going as planned.

Many businesses fail in their early stages because they expect to start making money the moment they open their doors for business. Once expenses start coming up and they don’t have a cushion to fall back on, they are on the path of failing.

Making the decision to become an entrepreneur is only the first leg of the race, avoiding these mistakes and many more at all costs is the next leg and it guarantees the success of your business.

Go on and succeed!

Photo Credit: Mariusz Szczawinski

My name is Nkechi Alade, a Business Consultant currently living in Lagos, Nigeria. I am passionate about building startups and re-vamping already existing businesses with my company Elvaridah. I also run a platform called Connect 360 Africa which was established to connect Entrepreneurs for the purpose of Networking, Collaborating and Building their Businesses. My interests range from entrepreneurship to singing. I am also interested in design, music, and writing. I am an outcome oriented individual who believes we can achieve all that we want to as long as we have control over our minds. If you’d like to get in touch, feel free to say hello my website:


  1. Sel

    June 1, 2017 at 12:11 am

    Thanks for this!

  2. e

    June 1, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    Thanks so much for this piece. I just quit my job on Wednesday to become an entrepreneur, I know it’s not going to be easy but I know God’s with me. God bless you dearly. I will go and I will succeed in this Amen.

    • Nkechi Alade

      June 5, 2017 at 1:39 pm

      You are most welcome and you definitely will succeed!

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