Category: Job Creation

Nigeria Seminars

One of Trepmaker’s ongoing projects are seminars we hold in Nigeria Africa. To date Trepmaker has taught over 10,000 college level Nigerians about starting a business. In a country where there is 80% unemployment, this is a vital tool in its economic future. Below are some articles related to Nigeria.

KAGORO TREP SEMINAR 2015

John facing a crowd of 600 future Treps.
John facing a crowd of 600 future Treps.

During the ECWA Theological Seminary in Kagoro, Nigeria on December 2016, the group decided to form an Entrepreneur Club that would meet frequently to discuss ways to grow a business. It was also agreed that a website would be a good venue to seek feedback and engage business owners to share their experiences. Before we move on to a more sophisticated site, we want to make sure that there is enough interest. This page is created to serve this very purpose.

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OLABISI ENTREPRENEUR PROJECT

The Trepmaker team composed of John Frykenberg, Sarah Philips and Raoul Pascual went to Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State, Nigeria and held an Entrepreneur Project for 4 days. About 1,029 students filled the stadium and listened to steps on “How to Make a Job.”

The Vice Chancellor of the university made a formal welcome the Trep team.
The Vice Chancellor of the university made a formal welcome to the Trep team.

We thank all of our sponsors: The Rotary Foundation; Rotary Club of Altadena, Dist. 5300, USA; Rotary Club of Skovde-Billingen, Dist 2380, Sweden; Rotary Club if Sagamu-Central, Dist 9110. Also the International Foundation for Entrepreneuerial Education Training who is our cooperating organization. And of course we thank our host Olabisi Onabanjo University for their wholehearted support and generosity.

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Entrepreneur As a Skillset

Comment by Ray Carlson:
I found this article to be reflective of my career as a chemical engineer in the petroleum refining industry.  I had been involved in the Junior Achievement Company Program while in my early years at Northwestern University, and that relatively simple program gave me an entrepreneurial mindset that manifested itself in my subsequent career.
When making decisions on expanding a refinery or designing a new one as I did in Sweden, I had to develop business plans to show the economic viability of making such investments.  My actions were so-called ‘intrapreneurial’ because I was making decisions for my employer, not a business of my own.
Therefor, developing entrepreneurial skills can be of great value even if one takes a job because those skills can enhance the profitability of the business. Employers should be interested in those that we have trained and business plans they have developed.  Most employers and managers  have not done so and should appreciate having an employee that can do it.
ORIGINAL ARTICE from Talent Economy:
Being an entrepreneur in 2016 means more than starting a business and taking on risk. Today’s definition is more reflective of a skillset that larger organizations are finding incredibly valuable.

Entrepreneurs are the faces of innovation. They start new businesses that disrupt industries and create great value to society.

In 2016, being labeled an entrepreneur has taken on new meaning. Due to the allure of entrepreneurship created by the most recent wave of new technology companies, led by celebrity founders like Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg, the term is increasingly thought of as a skill, not just an occupation. These leaders label themselves as founders, CEOs, etc., even if they’re seen as entrepreneurs, writes a Forbes contributor. It’s often those who aspire to the status of Silicon Valley-esque business owners who label themselves as such, which is why the word is included on many resumes.

While some insist that people do away with the trend of writing “entrepreneur” on resumes, a growing opinion is that they can be entrepreneurial without having started a business.

Being entrepreneurial is a special skillset, and someone doesn’t need to be an entrepreneur in the truest sense of the word to have it, according to Nathalie Duval-Couetil, associate director for Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. “Capturing value is that entrepreneurship piece because you might have a great idea,” Duval-Couetil said, “but really if the idea doesn’t have any value to anybody that they’re willing to use or pay for it, then it doesn’t have any value.”

Large companies have found the value of operating more entrepreneurially in how they function. Methods such as agile and lean, development practices coined in the technology industry, have overtaken some formally bureaucratic organizations. Moreover, 2012 research from professional services firm Deloitte found that nearly half of the companies it surveyed reported generating higher profit margins when they became more entrepreneurial.

But what does it mean to entrepreneurial?

Purdue’s Duval-Couetil said that entrepreneurs understand the process of capturing values from knowledge or resources. Qualities and skills of these people include perseverance, willingness to navigate obstacles and ability to network and analyze market research.

Michael Marasco, director of Northwestern University’s Farley Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, added that entrepreneurs typically possess qualities that include being hardworking, smart and focused on changing things for the better.

People who are entrepreneurial may exhibit these skills even if they’ve never started a business from scratch.

Are entrepreneurial skills learned or innate?

Duval-Couetil, who helps lead a university program in entrepreneurship, said that some people are naturally drawn to the idea of embodying the skills of entrepreneurship, while others take some time to discover their interest.

Nevertheless, many business schools have entrepreneur courses and certification programs. The Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program at Purdue requires that students take introduction courses in entrepreneurship, marketing and management, two option courses for market-specific depth and a capstone course or experiential program.

Duval-Couetil said these courses are rooted in the fundamental definition of entrepreneurship: They help students learn how to take an idea to market and start a business from the ground up.

However, she also said that by virtue of taking these courses many students learn many entrepreneurial skills that are valuable toward their employment with large organizations.

For instance, an engineering student with limited sales or public speaking skills might take what they learned on these subjects in an entrepreneurship course and apply it to their future engineering job at a large company.

Northwestern’s Marasco said that these types of entrepreneurs — the kinds that work in large firms — understand the business and aim to make it better, so they bring up ideas, gain support for them, and then make compromises between what they want to do and what the organization aims for.

What can CEOs do to foster an entrepreneurial workforce?

To show that the company supports entrepreneurship, leaders can champion new initiatives, support new business and keep open channels of communication, Marasco said. This helps employees at the organization have a say in what’s happening and feel that they’re owners of the company.

Duval-Couetil advocated for training to gain greater awareness of the concept. But beyond that, it’s important for companies to create a culture that embraces the value of entrepreneurship and values entrepreneurial talent. “The smart companies are the ones that are figuring out ways to keep those people,” she said. “If you have kind of a bureaucracy culture, you can’t expect entrepreneurial people to thrive.”

Lauren Dixon is an associate editor at Talent Economy.

CLICK HERE  for the original article by Lauren Dixon, Associate Editor of Talent Economy.

Successful Training at the ECWA Theological Seminary in Kagoro, Nigeria

The Trepmakers taught about 600 students at the ECWA Theological Seminary in Kagoro, Nigeria on December 14 to December 16.  There were some initial concerns of a low turnout because the students had just finished their semester and were already in their Spring break but students and businessmen from all over the area came in to learn about starting their own business.

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John Frykenberg and Raoul Pascual took turns in explaining the concept that people do not have to look for a job; instead, they can create a job. In a population where over 50% is unemployed, this new concept has a huge potential to help the local economy.

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Students were given examples of how big businesses started. They learned that everything started small. Every business started from a need or a problem and then someone offering a solution and getting paid for it. They were taught the importance of having a business plan to keep track of their finances; the importance of team work where there needs to be a visionary, a manager, a finance expert and a sales person.

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Free manuals and free lunch were provided to the crowd courtesy of our generous sponsors. Several local business owners participated. There was April who owned a lumber (mahogany) business who sought advice about improving her quality and diversifying. There was a printer named Femi, Samuel who started several small ventures; Another Femi who started a healthy “Finger Millet” factory; John Bosco who has a carpentry business; Still another “Femi” who is a journalist; It was a good mix of businessmen at different stages of their careers.

Special thanks go to Rev. Associate Professor Sunday Agang who spearheaded this activity. The challenge to hold this event in his institution came only a week prior. Another university was scheduled to hold this “Making a Job” seminar but they had to cancel due to some local unrest caused by the untimely death of the local “Oni.” Provost Sunday did a superhuman task of spreading the news, preparing the facilities and gathering his staff to prepare for anything. By the positive feedback of the participants, it was apparent that all his hard work was worth it.

 

There is already talk of starting a “Trep Club” that will meet on a regular basis. The provost has already approved the concept and directed some of his staff (Dennis Shelly and Micah) to head the team.

KJosUniversity

Although the seminar is over, the Trepmakers are committed to keeping the communication lines open. In a few days, this website will create a forum for the Kagoro residents to share their thoughts to the world. Maybe you who are reading this will be interested in some of the business ideas or have a business proposition of your own.

Kagoro Trep Seminar 2015

John facing a crowd of 600 future Treps.
John facing a crowd of 600 future Treps.

During the ECWA Theological Seminary in Kagoro, Nigeria on December 2016, the group decided to form an Entrepreneur Club that would meet frequently to discuss ways to grow a business. It was also agreed that a website would be a good venue to seek feedback and engage business owners to share their experiences. Before we move on to a more sophisticated site, we want to make sure that there is enough interest. This page is created to serve this very purpose.

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You can submit your ideas to start a business, share your feedback or simply learn from each other.

Raoul, Layahn, Dennis, Coletta, Sarah, John and Sunday
Raoul, Layahn, Dennis, Coletta, Sarah, John and Sunday
Alice owns a lumber company and sells mahogany panels. She brought in a sample of a guitar one of her workers made. In order to diversify, we suggested she create toy musical instruments.
Alice owns a lumber company and sells mahogany panels. She brought in a sample of a guitar one of her workers made. In order to diversify, we suggested she create toy musical instruments.
Raoul, Jonah, John and Sunday pose in front of a shed where they are experimenting with smoked catfish. We helped them with their branding concept.
Raoul, Jonah, John and Sunday pose in front of a shed where they are experimenting with smoked catfish. We helped them with their branding concept.
Smoked catfish.
Smoked catfish.
One of the participants named Femi, started a factory that makes Finger Milet which claims to be a cure to several common ailments like cholesterol, diabetes, cancers, obesity and anaemia.
One of the participants named Femi, started a factory that makes Finger Milet which claims to be a cure to several common ailments like cholesterol, diabetes, cancers, obesity and anaemia.

If you are interested in any of these projects, please write to us.  There are many other businesses and these new Treps are looking for future partners. They need capital as well as ideas.

Raoul having fun with the kids.
Raoul having fun with the kids.

You can start a topic or comment below.

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The Kagoro Chiefs invited the Rotary Team to their council meeting. They said the youth need to respect their traditions. They were glad we came to teach the people about Job Making.
The Kagoro Chiefs invited the Rotary Team to their council meeting. They said the youth need to respect their traditions. They were glad we came to teach the people about Job Making.
Mud Bricks and Hollow Block factories are all over the path from Kagoro to Abujah.
Mud Bricks and Hollow Block factories are all over the path from Kagoro to Abujah.
Abujah is the capital of Nigeria.
Abujah is the capital of Nigeria.

Raoul