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“Follow your passion, don’t follow money” – Simi Esiri shares Life Lessons as SCHICK Magazine turns One



As SCHICK Magazine turns one, the Founder and Editor-in-Chief Simi Esiri stopped to reflect on her 10 years plus journey to this point and more importantly what she’s learnt in the past year of doing business.

Here are her lessons in the hope that they encourage you to start whatever journey you have in your heart and follow your dreams:

  1. Be intentional: It’s so important to be very aware of yourself and your environment. Be very intentional about your goals and timelines, track yourself. I remember when I wanted to launch SCHICK Magazine, I set a deadline, it wasn’t easy because I had just become a new mum but I held myself accountable by telling the people closest to me and buried my head in planning for a great magazine.
  2. Follow your passion, don’t follow money: When I started SCHICK, I didn’t think about money, of course having a business making money almost immediately is good, but I strongly believe following your passions, will serve you better in the long run. Running a business takes up more than 70% of your life, find something that is worth the time, grit and commitment. Money WILL come. Just remember an “overnight success” story usually has at least 5 years of full commitment, not necessarily chasing money.
  3. Make good connections: It’s not always about networking, sometimes it’s about making good connections with like-minded people at. Don’t limit making conversations with people to only when you’re at a work function, it could be a wedding, the salon, waiting for a doctor’s appointment, in a lift. Don’t be shy to strike up a conversation, walk up to the person of interest and talk! And yes, you may have tried it several times and it didn’t work, try again! The more comfortable you are, the more this will come naturally to you.
  4. Keep asking questions: When I first started SCHICK, I went around and visited as many industry professionals as I could and asked so many questions. I was curious why the publishing industry in Nigeria, wasn’t doing as well as it could, the information I got was priceless! Today those “random” questions helped shape the way we do business and has helped inform our decisions for our target audience at SCHICK. Nigeria has its peculiarities, engage as many people as you can, ask questions to do your bit at cracking it!
  5. Pay close attention to your choice of mentors: I have a ton of mentors! Mentors are not only the people you have access to, it could be someone you admire and watch closely, for example, PepsiCo’s CEO, Indra Nooyi is my mentor although, she doesn’t even know who I am, don’t be afraid to pick from such leaders. When I started I had a particular mentor, who told me that we can’t get paid adverts in our first of year business, well we did. At least more than 10 businesses have trusted us to push their campaign messages through our platform. So, it’s very important to pick your mentors wisely and sieve out all information you’re given. Find people who have the life you want in 20 years, study them and implement their strategies in your life.

See the rest of her lessons on


  1. Fizzy

    April 23, 2018 at 4:11 pm

    I hear you. Spending daddy’s money qrtely shopping very rich coming from you. I wonder when hobbies like Schick pays the bills. Anyways, congrats for Effort.

  2. Fizzy

    April 23, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    Bella yeye dey worry you and it stinks. So, you are sensoring my comment becos Simi is a friend of the house or becos the post is sponsored? Shior x 2.

    • Lilo

      April 23, 2018 at 4:37 pm

      They ate my comment too cos I said no everyone ‘s daddy gives them £30k for annual shopping trip to the UK

  3. Lilo

    April 23, 2018 at 4:30 pm

    BN stop using comments as laxatives

  4. Fifi

    April 23, 2018 at 4:57 pm

    Ive never seen a copy of this magazine or is it an online magazine

  5. mami

    April 23, 2018 at 5:43 pm

    Follow money first…then you use the money to follow your passion, but if you already have plenty of money, then by all means follow your passion

  6. Chibaby

    April 23, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    Following your passion is great, but passion does not pay your bills. The economic reality of Nigeria is not even funny. If your passion can pay your bills, by all means follow it. If not, find a better paying passion or find a way to maintain your passion and still hold down the actual jobs that pay the bills.

  7. kpakpangolo

    April 23, 2018 at 6:54 pm

    How can i follow my passion? My passion is to wake up @ 11am daily & then be chauffered to work and run a cannabis farm& supply company that i own, Smoke some weed, drink some wine and then donate money to charities all over the world.
    Sister, this is my passion but i don’t have these things so? i follow the money.

  8. Ephi

    April 23, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    Nice website. Clean design. I like the content too, good mix of fashion and news.

  9. mamajollof

    April 23, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    That is easy to say when you come from a wealthy family and your husband is a millionaire. Please keep your nonsense life lessons to yourself. That Cartier bracelet on your wrist alone can feed my family and keep change so you’re not in a position to ask people not to “follow money.” We need it to survive in this harsh economy that your people are thriving on. If you’re struggling to pay school fees or feed yourself, the last thing on your mind will be “passion.” Passion doesn’t pay bills or fund expenses. Passion doesn’t cover hospital bills when your loved ones are dying. If you need to follow money to make ends meet, go ahead and do it and by Gods grace you’ll have an opportunity to “follow your passion” later on. People dont chase money just for fun, they do it because they are in need. SMH

    • Lilo

      April 23, 2018 at 10:51 pm

      Which kind juju did you use to get your comment pass BN border patrol and security? Twale

  10. Indulgence place - Black soap

    April 23, 2018 at 10:50 pm

    LOl…can’t wait to be rich then make such statements

  11. Aare farmland

    April 23, 2018 at 10:59 pm

    In fairness to her, it is phrase that is used in advanced economies but gets pushed back in Nigeria. Following your passion is best if the economy has good paying opportunities in various fields. So if you like and study Microbiology and there are available opportunities for research it will be easier to follow your passion. It does not mean small business alone but getting paid doing your hobby which will lead to commitment to work and company beyond monetary benefit. Doing your hobby also gives you advantages to shine and be less miserable at work and you get internal/personal motivation to succeed which some believe is better in terms of productivity to external motivation(money). But the chaotic situation and historical economic instability makes this idea get pushed back and we have embraced flexibility and adaptability as a key productive strength

  12. Eze

    April 23, 2018 at 11:21 pm

    Good advice. It’s always the case with people that are really successful……follow your passion. Good job [email protected]

  13. Ummy

    April 24, 2018 at 2:57 am

    Hi Team bellanaija,

    I would like to submit content for the blog .


    April 24, 2018 at 8:39 am

    Mrs Pedro wants you all to lick the ass of her cronies when their stories come up. ?

  15. Babym

    April 24, 2018 at 10:24 am

    Lol some of you are so bitter that ur bitterness clouds your judgement and you just sound so silly! What is wrong in following your passion? Who said passion following is for only rich ppl?? Believe it or not some of the poorest ppl in the world have followed their passion and turned it into wealth. With such myopic mentality some of u r spilling no wonder u r not progressing lool. Annnnnnd this whole shutting down somebody because they come from a wealthy background is so stupid lol. As if it is a crime to be rich. So because Simi’s parents r rich she should just sit down, cross leg and do nothing??? Abeg pls try to think before letting the bitterness of ur harsh realities cloud your judgment. And then when you finally become rich pls don’t give your children a leg up in life you hear so that internet warriors will not accuse them of spending ‘Daddy’s money’

    • Lilo

      April 24, 2018 at 1:08 pm

      Was this written by Sidney and I?

    • mamajollof

      April 25, 2018 at 4:22 pm

      My friend shut up there. You can actually count the number of Nigerians that have followed their passion, in this HARSH economy, and have become successful. Not after 10 years of toiling, I mean within a reasonable amount of time. You need to think about the COUNTRY you come from before choosing whether to follow a passion or follow money. Nigeria has nothing to offer the youth. NOTHING! That’s why people go after well-paying jobs. It’s not because they love money, it’s because they need it to survive! Get off your high horse and try to reason like the people who are suffering out there. Imagine you were a poor orphan from Borno state who has lost everything due to terrorist attacks. If someone presents you with a job that you’re not passionate about, BUT it pays N300,K every month, are you telling me you won’t take the job?? Are you saying you’d pass the money because its not your passion? despite being broke and helpless? abeg shift. Don’t speak on an issue you clearly know nothing about

    • tunmi

      April 25, 2018 at 4:37 pm

      It can come across as insensitive

  16. zzzzzzzzz

    April 24, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    I will say get the money first then follow the passion by the side. The passion may not pay the bills

  17. KayKayBayBay

    May 1, 2018 at 4:05 pm

    Y’all on BN really don’t like Simi for some reason LOL.
    I think her advice is well-intentioned, and if you’re lucky enough to have a passion that pays the bills and pays them well then go for it. Some people are passionate about business, engineering, etc and it pays the bills well for them.
    However, I’ve always found “follow your passion and money will come” to be a very misleading statement. A lot of people have pumped money into their passion only to go bankrupt. So it’s all well and good to follow your passion, but please, follow the money very closely! Before you start following your passion, you need to have steady income. That’s why I would even suggest following your passion as a side hustle to your 9-5 first so that if it’s promising, then you quit your 9-5. After all, you need money to keep .your passion afloat. If by 2 or 3 years, you’re still making grave losses and you can’t cover costs, then it’s time to let go.

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