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Success, work, entrepreneurship

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First of all, we cannot all be entrepreneurs.

Success comes in different forms for different people and success means different things to different people. For some, it means titles while for others it means getting married, having a huge conglomerate, going or staying abroad, having a high position in an organisation, living a quiet life, being famous or simply social media celebrities, getting the highest education qualifications, having enough to feed themselves and having a happy family… the list can fill this whole column space really but at least you get the idea.

So when agit a ting for something, we should be careful not to fall into hasty generalisation and fit everything and everyone into one box. Messages people receive do influence decisions they make and unfortunately once a message is transmitted, it can be interpreted in different ways by those that receive it. It is, therefore, important to be as precise as possible when giving out a message or, at least, acknowledge alternatives. It is important when setting different agendas to consider different sides of the coin and consider how people absorb information, making it vital to create information that is not misleading.

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Let us not make a god out of entrepreneurship; a god that will solve all problems or lead to happiness. Lest we end up with so many entrepreneurs that are not making any success in any ventures because they are working on information that is being put out there ad nauseam without enough background facts.

There are also a lot of articles that discuss things that SUCCESSFUL/RICH people do that POOR people do not do. The poster boys of these articles are usually internationally known businesspeople who ran big companies and have bank accounts that can feed a whole nation. This paints the picture that only these people have the best habits, characters and personalities by virtue of being rich/successful and that poor people are held at a lower standard. We should refrain from allowing this to get to our heads.

We cannot reduce human nature to money, titles and material possessions; these things cannot be a universal yard stick for what makes people successful or satisfied with their lives. Humanity is a lot more complex than that. Many a time, a rich person or entrepreneur has died with regrets because money on its own does not complete ‘success’ and guar a n tee happiness – Maslow’s hierarchy of needs comes to mind.

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In striving to promote entrepreneurship, let us refrain from making work and employment an enemy. Let us be careful about bastardising work and those providing various services. Other people are using the promotion of entrepreneurship as a leeway to dilute work etiquette and ethic. There are people who scold ‘work’ because all of a sudden receiving a salary from someone else has become such a big problem because it is better to make your own. Unfortunately, in the misguided chase for an own salary, there is a rise in corruption, backdoor deals, fraud and sheer thievery.

We have to respect that success for others does not include business, for some it does not include work and for others, it does not even include any of the above but pure servitude. But we are functioning in a system because there are people working behind those systems. There are people who are getting somewhere because of the salaries they are receiving, that are paid in exchange for diligent and dedicated work they take on, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

I rest my case.

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