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BilthMoment: Building your self-confidence, with Jackie Hanson Kwofie

Bilth Studio is a filmmaking, graphic design and social media marketing company looking to contribute to the creative industry and help SMEs promote their business online.

This session is about self-confidence, what it is and how we can build it in ourselves.

Let’s rock!!!

A young man wanted to be a movie director. To become an ambitious achiever, he decided to practice by directing short movies which he recorded with a camera he owned.

READ ALSO: Recognising entrepreneurial opportunities, with Enoch Kabange

He usually visited a filmmaking company that was located in his city of residence. He would dress nicely just like a movie director with an executive bag in his hand to the place.

This young man will move around the area to observe what was happening. His appearance to the place played a mind trick on the security guards thinking he was a worker. He found an empty office which he made his own.

One day, he got a chance to meet with one of the executives of the company and he showed him the videos he has made. He was impressed with his work and he was given a chance to direct a movie for the company.

The first movie he directed was a success which made the company, as well as himself, a huge amount of money.

READ ALSO: Benefits of a healthy sex lifestyle, with Miss Borteley

Reflection

This young man was confident in himself and in his skills. He knew he was good at what he was doing and he needed no one to tell him that. He portrayed self-confidence in his appearance and in the work he does.

All he wanted was to be a movie director, and by showing confidence in his work and himself, he was able to achieve success.

As is our confidence, so is our capacity.” By William Hazlitt

What is Self-Confidence

Psychology Dictionary defines Self-confidence as our self-assurance in trusting our abilities, capacities and judgements. It is the attitude we have about our abilities and skills.

When we trust our abilities and skill very well that we show no signs of doubt, we show how confident we are in ourselves. Contrary to this is a sign of low self-confidence.

READ ALSO: Starting and ending the year right, with Akosua Yesuba

Myth About Self-Confidence

There are many myths about self-confidence, some we tell ourselves and some other people let us know about. These myths can keep us from building confidence in ourselves.

Most people have a belief that being self-confident means you are being “too known.” But contrary, self-confidence does not equate to being “too known.”

People who label others as “too known” most of the time, projects their own fears and insecurities on others.

The truth is, those people wish they had the “guts” and the ability to be what you are made up of but cannot be and so resort to name calling.

Becoming Self-Confident

Self-confidence starts with knowing yourself and knowing WHOSE you are. WHOSE you are, means who you belong to.

I would like you to day-dream for some few seconds. I want you to imagine that you are the son or daughter of a president. Imagine how it feels like to be the son or daughter of a president of a nation.

In becoming self-confident, knowing the WHOSE you are is very important. When you know that you are the son or daughter of a highly respected man in your country, you walk with your head up high.

To be self-confident, you need to know who you are. And that goes beyond knowing your name, age and where you come from. It’s more of knowing what your strengths are and building on them to become even better. Aside from knowing what your strengths are, it’s important to also know what your weaknesses are so you can work on them

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There is a term called SWOT analysis which you can use to know who you are in terms of assessing yourself in your strengths and weaknesses.

SWOT stands for Strength, Weakness, Opportunity and Threats. Your strengths are the things you are good at doing and can even become better. Your weaknesses are what you don’t do best. They are things you fall short of. Opportunity is something you can be better at doing when the appropriate training, education and the right discipline is employed. Threats are the things that can harm your life or future.

How to Become Self-Confident

You are thinking of becoming self-confident right? Then know this;

Self-confident people are the most criticized people.

Be ready to deal with a lot of criticisms, name calling and being vilified just because you are self-confident.

People will throw things at you so that you cower and coil into your shells. But I believe that is where the test of being self-confident truly lies.

These things can easily break you down. But if you know who you are, nothing can break you. Because they call you names doesn’t change the true identity of who you are and what you are made of. That is why it is very important to know whom you belong to.

There are some key things to note in Psalm 139:13-14. Likewise Psalm 27:3. If you are a Christian and you get to the point of being vilified and all that, you can take inspiration from these scriptures.

One characteristics of a self-confident person is that they are not perturbed by what people say or do. Do you stop to throw stones at every dog that barks at you?

Self-confident people take criticisms constructively

In as much as people “talk,” there are some people who give honest feedback and these are people to keep. Because you are self-confident doesn’t mean you are beyond mistakes. Your ability to even see reason from what other people share as feedback with you alone is a good credit for you.

Self-confident people develop themselves constantly and it reflects in what they do. Their self-confidence reflects in their careers, their personal lives, associations with other people at workplace, school etc.

If you are not learning to develop yourself, I’m sorry but you’re going nowhere. You’ll remain in class one and everyone else will be way ahead of you. You don’t want that to happen to you.

READ ALSO: How to set goals you can achieve, with Emmaline Datey

How to Practically Build Your Self-Confidence

#1 Count Your Blessings

Being aware of these blessings, has a way of positioning you to be self-confident and remaining that way. It’s not even in the material things you have. Things like your talent, gifts, and intangible blessings go a long way.

#2 Seek positive support.

Everybody needs somebody. I need you to thrive and you need me to thrive. Don’t live on an island. Give positive support as much as you take from people.

#3 Be mindful of people within your circle who tend to dim your light.

When you identify such people, what you have to do is to cut them off! No bad energy. Sorry, not sorry.

Conclusion

Building self-confidence should be a necessity in the lives of every individual. There are some key factors you have to put into consideration when you want to build self-confidence. First factor is to know yourself. Constructively accept criticisms and take time to develop yourself.

Also, there are practical ways of building self-confidence which include; counting your blessings, seeking positive support and also being mindful of people within your circle who tend to dim your light.

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BilthMoment: Recognising entrepreneurial opportunities with Enoch Kabange

Entrepreneurship, as the definition goes according to Oxford Dictionary, is the activity of setting up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of making a profit.

Entrepreneurship serves as a great opportunity for the youth to create opportunities for themselves and others. When we look at the employment data, one can only be overwhelmed because of the fact that only a fraction of young people are gainfully employed.

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The Institute of Social, Statistical and Economic Research (ISSER) came out with some data some years back which revealed that about 10% of tertiary graduates are able to secure jobs in their first year of graduation. And it would take the remaining 90% up to 10 years to gain jobs.

In order not to fall under this, you may choose the path of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship is very fascinating, can be scary and exciting at the same time. But for those who are willing to carve their own paths, by building their own business, you need an idea.

If you should ask anyone if it has ever crossed their mind to start a business of their own, you will probably receive a ‘yes’ as an answer.

READ ALSO: Starting and ending the year right

But why is it that these people haven’t started their businesses yet? Many will complain that lack of capital has hinder them from starting business of their own.

Starting a business often seems like it’s all about the money. But the problem is lack of business ideas. There are people who want to start a business but don’t have any business idea in mind.

How do you start a business when you lack business idea?

The more common problem isn’t a lack of money but rather lack of ideas and resourcefulness. A resourceful person can do more with little but if someone who isn’t resourceful can hardly do much with abundance. This is why the business idea matters a lot.

Sometimes, you may even have to use a minimum viable product to gain insights into the customers and how a good product should be. Most big businesses started small. Big things come with patient. Start small, focus on big things later.

READ ALSO: Understanding the lean startup method

It is very beneficial to start small and sometimes even when you have the means to start big, you need to do something small. Many big businesses we see or hear of today started as small businesses years ago. Starting small is often despised but it is the foundation.

How to recognize business/entrepreneurial opportunities

Business ideas can be very hard to recognize. There are people who has the capital but has no business idea. There are others who have the idea but lack the capital to start.

Instead of simply feeding you with some tricks, I want to open you up to entrepreneurship so that you understand what at all is entrepreneurship.

The basis of entrepreneurship is the entrepreneur. Dangote was influenced by his Grandfather’s trading activities.

Osei Kwame Despite returned to Ghana from Nigeria with a chainsaw and a CD player. He started a chain saw business but lost his chain saw on his first day. He then relied on his CD player, used it to sell CDs then used the proceeds to go into media and trading.

What I am going to expose you to today is not just how to spot entrepreneurial opportunities but also how to operate as an entrepreneur. It is based on a theory called Effectuation, coined by Saras D. Sarasvathy in the University of Virginia. Effective use of the theory can make you think like an entrepreneur. The theory has a number of principles.

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Who on this earth don’t have anything (friends, some small amount of money, skills, knowledge/education) at all?

To come with the best business idea, you need to use the five (5) principles of effectuation. It starts with you and what you have. Everyone has something, maybe not be money but we all have something to offer.

The principles of Effectuation are;

Bird-in-hand principle — start with your means.

You need to consider what you have in terms of the amount of money you can commit to it without crying later when you lose it. You also need to consider what you know. You can’t start a business that you don’t have enough knowledge about.

George Samuel Clason, in his book, the richest man in Babylon wrote about five (5) laws of gold. The fourth law was; Gold slippeth away from the man who invests it in businesses or purposes with which he is not familiar or which are not approved by those skilled in its keep.

You might be at risk of losing money and resources when you invest in a business you know little or nothing about.

In addition, ask yourself, who do I know? Especially those who you can work with on business initiatives. This is more or less like finding a co-founder you can work together with to achieve success in your business.

READ ALSO: Choosing a business name and a logo

Affordable-loss principle — focus on the downside risk.

You must work with only what you can afford to lose else your emotions will run the business instead of your head. When you feel the stakes are high, you will naturally make bad decisions if you aren’t trained to act properly under pressure. So, stay away from using what you wouldn’t want to lose.

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Lemonade principle — leverage contingencies.

The lemonade principle simply requires that you make the best of any situation. Who knew that Toyota was first a loom making business? But they saw other opportunities and took advantage of them.

You may make up your mind to do a certain business but get disappointed. But in your disappointment, you may realize another thing that really works and people would patronize.

You must seek to find the best out of the current idea to jumpstart another that stands a higher chance of taking off.

Crazy-quilt principle — form partnerships

The crazy guilt principle stresses on friendship and partnership which can be fruitful to your venture. In the world of business, you cannot everything by yourself.

For example, if you want to start an app, but don’t know how to program, you can get an app developer as the co-founder. You will fuel the idea and the person takes care of product development.

Pilot-in-the-plane principle—control the future.

The pilot in the plane principle says that you are the boss. Even though life happens, you have complete control to determine your own attitude and to make the right decisions that will make you successful.

You cannot predict the future, but you can at least try to create it instead of sitting on the sidelines. You must use the lemonade principle when you face difficulties and you must focus on the loss that you can afford. You must actively seek the partnerships that can help you grow.

Spotting Entrepreneurial Opportunities

The principal source of entrepreneurial opportunities is in problem identification.When one is able to identify a problem and is able to provide a solution to that problem, he or she has discovered a business opportunity. Problem identification is also a wealth making opportunity.

Most successful entrepreneurs and rich men attain their wealth by providing a solution to a societal problem. Jeff Bezos and other e-commerce companies solved the world problem by placing the market in the hands of potential buyers.

Providing solutions to a problem can be in the form of invention or innovation. On the basic level, you can invent something to solve a problem or you can innovate an already existing solution or product.

READ ALSO: Money transfer abroad – 12 questions answered

Invention

For invention, a Ghanaian called Isaac Sesi invented a product to detect moisture in grains to help farmer prevent post-harvest loses.

But Isaac has an engineering background. He also is passionate about farming. He knew that farmers in Ghana suffer from loses because their produce are sometimes not well dried hence, they get bad.

He relied on what he had, his knowledge in engineering and farming. He started as a student and operated in a lab in KNUST.

That’s how he started; he now has a team and is making waves in Ghana and the world helping farmers.

Peter Thiel in his book zero to one used a term called vertical progress to describe this type of invention. He stated that, “Vertical progress is harder to imagine because it requires doing something nobody else has ever done.”

Innovation

The second is innovation. So, say, another person who is a farmer realizes a serious fault with Isaac’s invention and decides to make a better one, he is innovating on Isaac’s idea. He can equally build a business making that same product but in a different way. He is a farmer and knows more about the challenges farmers face. But he doesn’t know to engineer so he uses the crazy-quilt principle to get someone knowledgeable in engineering. They start together to build prototypes that they can use to secure funding.

Some product ideas will need a lot of funding so if your idea falls into that, you will have to learn how to pitch and raise capital.

Studying Trends

Studying trends is another way to spot business opportunities. Peter Thiel described it as horizontal or extensive progress in his book Zero to One. Horizontal or expensive progress is copying things that work. When you study trends, you copy things that work somewhere and doing it in another place.

In Peter’s book, he used Chinese as an example. China had a 20 years plan to become like the United States. China copied straightforward things that worked in the developed world.

In conclusion

Entrepreneurship is a great opportunity for oneself and others. It can be a path of fortune creation. To be an entrepreneur, you need a business idea.

Entrepreneurship is all about recognizing business opportunities and acting accordingly. One of the effective ways of recognizing business opportunities is through the use effectuation principle.

The best way of spotting business ideas is problem identification. Business ideas hides in problems. Providing a solution to a problem through invention and innovation can be a start of a business.

Studying trends is another way of recognizing business opportunity. Find something that work at a certain place and do same at another place.

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BilthMoment: Benefit Of A Healthy Sex Lifestyle, With Miss Borteley

Dora Naa Borteley Borkete-la is a Public Health Worker, CEO of Borteley Kente and Fugu Hub and the Founder and President of B-Inspired Foundation (NGO).
Sex is an act of getting intimate with the opposite sex. It could be out of curiosity, love, or any other purpose.
Reasons why we have sex include pleasure, stress relief, attraction to a person, to make babies or sometimes for social status.

Sex mostly ends with a good feeling leaves one relieved and happy in most cases.
How Often Can One Have Sex?
Study shows that having sex once or twice in a week is the best. But in the society we find ourselves in, people tend to have sex more than twice or once in a week; this is good unless done exceedingly.
The benefits of a healthy sex lifestyle

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Sex is extremely beneficial to our health. If one practices a good or bad sex life, it goes a long way to help or affect the parties involved in the act.
10 benefits of a healthy sex lifestyle: 
1. Keeps Your Immune System Humming
Bodies of people who have sex have a higher tendency of fighting against viruses, germs, bacteria and a lot of diseases.
A study even shows that people who have sex twice or thrice a week have a higher count of antibodies compared to those who have sex once a week.

Aside from this, you should still do all that keeps the immune system working like staying active, eating right and taking your vaccines.
2. Boosts One’s Libido
Good sex boosts one’s libido, lubricates the female sex organ and makes sex enjoyable between both parties.

In women healthy, sex increases virginal lubrication and aids blood flows and elasticity, which even makes you crave for more.
3. Improves Women’s Bladder Control
A strong pelvic floor is important for avoiding inconsistency. Good sex is like a workout or an exercise for your pelvic floor muscles.

When you have orgasms is causes contractions in those muscles and that strengths them.
4.Healthy sex lifestyle May Make Prostate Cancer Less Likely
Men who ejaculate (at least 21 times a month) are less likely to get prostate cancer.  
5. Lowers Your Blood Pressure.  
Most times we hear about high blood pressure then we tend to ask questions and even panic.

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Research suggests that there is a big link between sex and low blood pressure. Sexual intercourse lowers systolic blood pressure which is very common these days.
6. Counts As Exercise
 Sex is a great form of exercise. Though it can’t replace the treadmill, it certainly works as a great form of exercise.

Sex burns about 5 calories per minute, 4 more calories than watching TV. It gives you a one-two punch; it bumps up your heart rate.
7. Reduces The Risk Of Heart Attack
Good sex life is good for your heart. It’s a great way to raise your heart rate. A healthy sex lifestyle keeps your estrogen and testosterone levels in balance.

When either of this is low, it leads to heart diseases and osteoporosis (disease of the bone).

The study also says men who have less sex are prone to getting heart diseases than men who do.
 8. Lessens Pain
Before you reach for an aspirin, reach for orgasm, as the saying goes. 
Orgasms can block pains.

It releases a hormone that helps raise your pain threshold. Stimulation without orgasm can also do the trick, study has found out that virginal stimulation can block chronic back and leg pain.

And many women have said that genital self-stimulation can reduce menstrual cramps or arthritic pain and in some cases even headaches.
9. Healthy sex lifestyle improves sleep and eases stress
You may nod off after sex which is a good reason. After orgasm, the hormone prolactin is released, which is responsible for the feeling of “relaxation and sleepiness”.

Also cuddling or being close to your partner can ease stress and anxiety.
10. Kissing And Hugging Can Release Your Body Natural feeling good hormone
Sexual arousal releases a chemical that revs up your brain’s pleasure.


In conclusion, it is very important to embrace good sex life by taking good care of yourself, using protection and practicing a healthy sex lifestyle to get all the benefits benefit.

READ ALSO: BilthMoment: Standing and ending the year right, with Akosua Yesuba

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BilthMoment: Starting And Ending the Year Right, With Akosua Yesuba

However you start your year, there are some expectations we’re all of looking up to, even though we may have written our plans down.

I have just one word; that if we follow the disintegration of this word carefully, we shall not only start and end well, but we shall lay down a good foundation for ourselves for future successes.  

The word is DISCIPLINE.

READ ALSO: Understanding the lean startup method with Tabah Baridule

DISCIPLINE

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines ‘Discipline’ as training that corrects, moulds or perfects the mental faculties or the moral character of people. It is also described as “orderly or prescribed conduct or pattern of behaviour”.  

Discipline has to do with putting one’s self under control through perfect mental behaviour and orderly conduct.

 Let break down the word and find out how the individual characters can lead us into starting and ending this year right.

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1. D – DEFINE YOUR LIFE PURPOSE

The livelihood of man is intertwined in a web of purpose-finding, following and fulfilment. This with the betterment of humanity at its core and not merely making the individual “satisfied”.

I was privilege to sit in a conference a week ago organized by the FOPIC FOUNDATION, where we delved deeply into the intricacies of the word PURPOSE. Most of us are merely living our lives based on PASSION and not PURPOSE.

The difference between the two is that PASSION is inward, personal and self-centred, but PURPOSE goes beyond you, creating an outward impact for the good of all.

If you’re just going to work to earn a salary, know that the “passion” to earn and take care of your needs is what is driving you, but if you’re going to work because you have a “cause”, (you want others to feel better), then you’re driven by PURPOSE.

The good news is that PURPOSE and PASSION have a place of convergence. They have a meeting point, and that meeting point becomes “a sweet spot”. If you want to start and finish well, you need to start right by DEFINING AND re-DEFINING your life’s PURPOSE.

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2. I – INVEST in Yourself

You need to be conscious of your self-development. Your yesterday must not be like today, and your tomorrow must certainly be better than your today.

After you find out what you’re meant to live for in life, improve upon yourself to be the best in that endeavour.

Read books to improve upon your mental faculties. Train your body, get healthy and be conscious of what you eat and wear.  Your body is you, don’t be careless with your body.

PEOPLE WILL ADDRESS YOU THE WAY YOU’RE DRESSED. Look good and smell good. It’s a part of physical investment.

Whatever the field you find yourself in, invest time in that to be better every day. For instance, I want to improve my music career, I try to learn songs, even the ones which do not have local lyrics. I started because I identified that to be one of my topmost purposes.

What is yours? Improve upon it by investing more time.

READ ALSO: BilthMoment: Life After High School; Career Choices With Hannah Zoroaster Edwin

3. S – STOP PROCRASTINATION & EXCUSES

What you must do today, please don’t say you’ll do it tomorrow. Procrastination is not only a thief of time but a murderer of destinies and successes.

Even when you think you’re not good enough, give it a try. When life presents you with a thousand reasons why you cannot, give that one reason why you can and pursue it. You don’t have to be perfect before you jump at an opportunity. Learn on the job, learn from others, and learn from experiences. Just don’t postpone what must be done today otherwise you’ll have a giant of problems in future.

4. C – CONTROL YOUR DESIRES

This point sums up the entire definition of discipline. Everything in this world wants your attention, the good, the bad, and the worst.

A man who cannot control his emotions and desires is one who is bound to fail in this world.

Sexual desires, desire to make wealth, appetite for the most sumptuous meals, taste for the most expensive clothes, bags and shoes, craving to be on social media 24/7, etc; all of these must be controlled.

Don’t let your emotions interfere with your better sense of judgment this year, know when you have to learn, work and do equally important things. Life is not all about how you feel.

READ ALSO: BilthMoment: Business Model, With Peter Tonka

5. I- INITIATE PLANNING AND PRIORITISATION

One way you can achieve the earlier point we discussed is when you plan and priorities. Know what comes first in your life and work towards it.

Prioritization helps you to become a master of all trades if the need be.  It helps you to win here, win there and make it here and there as well. Prepare a budget and know how you’re spending your money, time and energy.

6. P- PAY YOURSELF

“In the book the Richest Man in Babylon” by George Clason, it says that one way to earn and achieve financial success is to put something down for yourself  (SAVINGS) 1/10th of all you earn is yours to keep. One thing about savings is, everyone can save, especially if you’re working. You must be conscious of that this year.

What you save, you can invest in a lucrative business venture that will earn you more and more coins. Don’t be a spendthrift, learn to SAVE.

7.  L- LIVE BEYOND WEAKNESSES AND FAILURES

Life will not be as rosy as you always expect. Things happen, you can lose a dear one, you can lose an opportunity as I did some days ago, you can make mistakes, and you can fail. But live above those weaknesses. Don’t let them take the better part of you away.

One man was always short-tempered and he was proud about it, always getting angry and acting in accordance with his anger.

One day he killed his landlord for making advances and sleeping with his wife. He was put in prison for that, after 10years when he was to be released, he cried bitterly and told his lawyer “I don’t know how many men would have had access to sleep with my wife as I was safely locked in prison”.

Take this from me, nothing at all is worth pulling you down this year if you decide so. Not even your own weaknesses or failures so far as you can live above them.

READ ALSO: Writing a Business Plan, with Frank B. Yeboah

8. I-INCLUDE THE GOD FACTOR

The God factor is one thing you can’t take out of the equation of life no matter what. My Father in the Lord, Evangelist James Larbi Lordson, will say, “the reason why God created the man alone and made the woman whiles the man was sleeping was so that they could each have a personal relationship with God.”

Pray, study your Bible, fast, pay your tithes and offerings and give etc.

Above all, don’t be “carnal about all these things, be very spiritual about them because the world we see is not as we see.

9. N- NETWORK

One of the greatest gifts God has given a man is his fellow man. You can do something, but you cannot do everything.

That is why God made other people with diverse skills to come to our ways so we can benefit from each other.

By the definition of “Network”, I don’t mean mere “socialization” Many of us know how to “socialize” (go out, meet new people, interact, exchange contracts, talk once and that’s all.)

Networking goes beyond that, it’s connecting and staying in touch with like-minded fellows, “superiors”, “mentors” etc. for periodic and timely advice, rendering of services etc.

READ ALSO: Finding a co-founder, with Joseph Yaw Mawunyo

10. E- EVALUATE YOUR PROGRESS

The essence of examination, is not to scare us, or make use compare ourselves with others. It’s basically to see how much we have improved or matured.

Life is like an examination, every one of us has his or her Question paper. Don’t try to copy or compare yourself with anyone.

Make time for yourself, sit down and analyze how far you have come, check the friends around you if there are some you need to take out of your life, check your health, your spiritual life etc.

It’s a time of review; you can do this with a “mentor”, “yourself, or a trusted friend.

READ ALSO: Smart strategies to adopt when choosing a business name and logo

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BilthMoment: Understanding the lean startup method with Tabah Baridule

Coming from an underrepresented community, Tabah Baridule was compelled to represent student communities and societies in a bid to educate and inform them of the benefits of technology.

He is the Strategic Project Manager at MEGHEE and is passionate about promoting diversity at the work place as well as developing technical content.

He began his submission by asking the house what a startup is.

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A number of answers were provided, notable among them coming from Sherita Ama Pokua, who said “a startup is a project or company founded an entrepreneur(s) to bring a product to the market.”

“A startup is a process of turning an idea into usable actions that fit the need of the people it is targeted at” Tabah added. 

According to Eric Ries, the success of our startups depends on our ability to learn, re-learn, and teach ourselves how to serve our users effectively.

What is ‘lean’ and what is a ‘method’?

Lean startup method is a methodology. Which means it is a step by step approach to manage the growth of your business or startup. 

Lean startup is a methodology for developing businesses and products that aims to shorten product development cycles and rapidly discover if a proposed business model is viable.

This is achieved by adopting a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning.

“I am going to talk about few keywords here and now our startup, ‘Timiun’, adopted this” he continued. 

Business Hypothesis Driven Experimentation:

During our Senior High School days, we often conducted science experiments as groups and individuals.

As a team, my team launched timiun.com as an e-commerce platform without an app, a few years ago.

We first develop our business model and then carried out our hypothesis by testing our business model on campus with students. 

We drove the experiment of our business model by calling on students to use the platform.

We created a means of getting feedback from them; via mail, a WhatsApp group and a Facebook page. 

As a result of this, we there was an increased demand for an app.

READ ALSO: How to get the perfect co-founder for your business

At this point, we are still at the minimum viable product (MVP) level. It is the stage in the life of your product where it is still at its beta mode.

The lean startup method is focused on your business model and you can observe your market and pivot accordingly when necessary.

Once I read a quote that said “the world changes in style but not in principle”

We didn’t change our vision but we change our style of business. 

Why do we need a lean startup method?

We need it to ensure that our product or company hit its minimum viable state. 

It also helps us get our product or company out to customers or clients faster and achieve the beta mode for our business.

Lean Startup method give us the privilege to always iterate the process which is…ideaà buildàcodeàmeasureàdataàlearn.

But this time, you would have changed an idea into analysis because you have built on the idea and it is now a product or a company.

People have used and given you feedback so you analyse the feedback and build on it again in order to push it out and still learn. 

Once our product has hits like 10k active users and goodwill has become our experience, then you could brag of Product-Market Fit (PMF).

READ ALSO: Getting the best out of your market research

There is a bridge between PMF and MVP. Talking to users includes the part where you interact with people about your product, app or website, your company vision and mission; you then observe the reactions and listen to their feedback.

Take note because you may want to effect some change along the line. 

In the Bible, there is this phrase in Proverbs that said “wisdom is found on the street.

Your company or startup or product could be facing a challenge but once you talk to users, you immediately receive clues on how to solve that problem, because someone said something. In essence, a problem shared is a problem solved. 

Your plan is to solve a problem so when you create room for user feedback and ask for users suggestions on how you can serve them better, you are doing more by making feel part of your development phase, and in the process, serving them better.

READ ALSO: Designing a perfect business model; steps to follow

At that stage, you are checking for priorities and asking yourself questions such as “is this what we need now?

Should we add that button or not?

Is it right for email marketing?

How about customer calls; when can we do that?

All these questions give clarity.

Deploy to the market, talk to people about it, be honest and expect negative feedback as well as positive feedback.

Work on it again and continue to deploy. For you to successfully use the lean startup method, you have to be resilient.

READ ALSO: Smart strategies to adopt when choosing a business name and logo

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BilthMoment: How to set goals you can achieve with Emmaline Datey

Everyone has a desire to achieve something greater; a career, a business, a family, etc but nobody achieves anything without being intentional.

The thing about goal setting is not so much in achieving them but what you become by achieving them.

That’s why I don’t under emphasize on the importance of personal growth. When you are focused on growth, you will be motivated to achieve your goals

READ ALSO: Smart strategies to adopt when choosing a business name and logo

In John C. Maxwell’s write up on 7 steps to success, he outlined the following:

1. Make a commitment to grow daily

2. Value the process, not the events

3. Don’t wait for inspiration

4. Be willing to sacrifice pleasure for opportunity

5. Dream big

6. Plan your priorities

7. Give up to go up

Now in order to be successful, you need to form daily habits that will ensure success. Reflect on your daily habits; would you find yourself on the path to your goals?

What is success?

According to John C. Maxwell, success is knowing your purpose in life, growing to reach your maximum potential, and sowing seeds that benefit others.

Hence success is not just being popular or having a big name or lots of luxury.

Now how do you ensure you form good daily habits? By developing yourself; personal growth enables you to develop the discipline to achieve your goals.

John Maxwell shared 15 laws of growth, but we will focus on two of them:

  1. The Law of Pain
  2. The Law of the Rubber Band

The Law of Pain:

This law states that good management of bad experiences lead to growth. This means that we will all experience growing pains which are life lessons requiring some form of pain management; how we deal with these painful moments affect our growth.

The Law of the Rubber Band:

This states that growing to your full potential requires stretching out of your comfort zone. Hence in order for you to grow to your full potential, you have to stretch beyond your current comfort zone. Stretching grows your athletic muscles and personal growth muscles.

READ ALSO: Designing a perfect business model; steps to follow

We all know that pain is something we avoid naturally. Everyone has bad experiences too and there are 3 ways people respond to them:

  1. Some of us avoid them
  2. Some of us deal with them
  3. Others embrace them; these are leaders

However, pain is unavoidable.

How do we turn our pain into gain?

1. Take a positive life stance-look for positive lessons in every experience; embrace and develop your creativity.

2. Embrace the value of bad experiences; winners are learners

3. Make good changes. What happens to us is rarely the end of the road. Many of us focus on our feelings about what has happened to us. Change your focus to your thoughts and actions that will lead you in a better direction.

How to move forward in growing through pain:

  1. Get input from others
  2. Understand your emotions
  3. Identify specific changes you want to have.
  4. Take action.

If I were to ask, do you want to grow? How would you respond? I believe it would resounding yes; I want to grow. 

But the truth is that for most of us, we avoid any form of pressure because we don’t want to feel uncomfortable.

This is because we have been taught that comfort is a place to be desired and strived for.

But if I may burst your bubble let me tell you that all living things grow and growth requires stretching.

Look for positive ways to turn your pain into strength. Seek help or counsel from a coach. Understand that your emotions are normal but you can control them. Access your strengths and weaknesses and take action to make sure you grow.

READ ALSO: Getting the best out of your market research

Key points about stretching:

  • Stretching sets you apart from others
  • Stretching can become a lifestyle
  • Stretching gives you a shot at significance. People who are committed to making a difference stand out in life.

John Maxwell says that true life begins at the end of our comfort zone and we arrive there by stretching.

Look for positive ways to turn your pain into strength. Seek help or counsel for a coach. Understand that your emotions are normal but you can control them. Access your strengths and weaknesses and take action to make sure you grow.

Pain and stretching are key ingredients for personal growth. Don’t be discouraged by your current situation. They can turn your life around and make you mature. People who grow don’t misuse wealth and are sensitive to others.

Responsible people know how to handle fame but are not focused on it. 

Once you focus on growth, you will be motivated to achieve your goals.

Setting personal goals:

A goal is a desired result a person or a system envisions, plans and commits to achieve. It is also a personal or organizational desired end-point in some sort of assumed development.

Many people endeavor to reach goals within a finite time by setting deadlines.

In other words, any planning you do for the future regardless of what it is, is a goal.

READ ALSO: How to get the perfect co-founder for your business

Importance of goal setting:

1. Goals push you forward

2. Goals hold you accountable

3. Goals help you define success

4. Goals serve as a measuring stick for success

5. Goals help boost morale

6. Goals set priorities

7. Goals communicate progress 

8. Goals help you track progress 

9. Goals inform you of how much progress you are making.

By understanding your purpose and your why, you gain a sense of direction, vision, meaning, clarity, feeling of accomplishment and true fulfillment when the goal is completed.

Below are examples of typical career goals:

1. Increase professional knowledge and training: Whether taking a college class, a workshop offered by an employer, getting a certification, or something along those lines, this is a common goal. It can be useful both if you are looking for work, or are already employed.

2. Increase earnings: Being underpaid often detracts from motivation and performance. Making changes to earn more increases enthusiasm for most jobs, and motivates a job search.

3. Improve low-functioning work processes or relationships: This goal area can make the daily work experience more positive and rewarding.

4. Have new experiences: Whether volunteering in your community or at work, joining a professional association to meet new people in your field, or introducing yourself to people you never talk with, new experiences fuel interest in your career.

5. Attain a leadership role: Many people feel their ultimate goal is to lead in their career or organization. Establishing the steps to achieve a leadership role makes it possible.

Your goals must ultimately lead to your vision or purpose.

So before you can effectively set goals, you must define your purpose.

If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, set goals that will help you achieve that.

Practical tools for goal setting:

Goal setting requires objective methods. We are more familiar with SMART Goals. But they can be SMARTER

S – Specific

M – Meaningful

A – Achievable

R – Relevant

T – Time bound

E – Evaluatable 

R – Readjustable

Practical tools to help achieve goals include:

Vision board

Action board

Motivation board

What is a vision board?

A vision board is a tool used to help clarify, concentrate and maintain focus on a specific life goal.

Literally, a vision board is any sort of board on which you display images that represent whatever you want to be, do or have in your life.

A vision board is also known as dream board. It is one of the most valuable visualization tools. They look like inspirational collages which serve as your image of the future – a tangible example, idea or representation of where you are going. It should represent your dreams, your goals, and your ideal life.

By representing your goals with pictures and images you will actually strengthen and stimulate your emotions because your mind responds strongly to visual  stimulation and your emotions are the vibrational energy that activates the Law of Attraction. The saying “A picture is worth a thousand words,” certainly holds true here.

What Is an action board?

An action board could be considered as an extension of a vision board. Aside from that, you might also decide to have only an action board.

The action board consists of the specific actions that you need to take in order to achieve a specific desire or goal.

The action board consists of the specific actions that you need to take in order to achieve a specific desire or goal.

A Vision board is usually done once a year. With an action board, you can break your vision board into monthly or weekly boards that consist of the actions you need to take to achieve your final goals.

An action board will help you determine the small actions you need to take in order to achieve the big goal. 

What is a motivation board?

A motivation board is a decorative board that tracks your progress. This manifestation tool is used to motivate you towards achieving a specific goal.

Both action and motivation board are best when used along with a vision board. The vision board is the ultimate manifestation tool that features your biggest priorities all in one place.

The most important thing about achieving your goals is to believe that you can. When you are driven by purpose, and focused on growth, achieving your goals won’t be a mere wish.

In conclusion, it is so easy to be overwhelmed by your current situation but they don’t define or limit you.

God said to Abraham: “I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession.”

How do you want your future to be? Are your thoughts positive enough to lift you from your current situation to your desired future? Have you written down your SMARTER Goals? How do you intend to achieve them after writing them down? 

Your life will change if you decide that it should. God has made it possible for you to succeed. Stop pitying yourself.

Get a coach to hold you accountable. Reward your success to motivate you to go further. Get to work. Plan and Act.

Join us for subsequent sessions, send a message to wa.me/233595863409. Follow us on our social media platforms; Bilth Studio for updates. 

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BilthMoment: Choosing A Business Name And Logo, With Edwin Dela

Bilth Moments resumes after a short break to address the challenges startups face when deciding on their brand identity; choosing a business name and a logo.

We had the honor to host Mr Edwin Dela, the founder and CEO of BrandNerds Ltd, a creative agency based in Accra, Ghana.

Mr Dela is also a creative designer, photographer, digital marketer, brand strategist and a youth empowerment advocate.

READ ALSO: SHS graduate launches new business; flaunts rings anklets and more

He started by saying that choosing a business name isn’t about what you think or what you want; it is about who you are going to serve and how you want them to accept you.

And we have different formats for picking up names; you can decide on combining two names, coming up abstract names, picking a familiar name that resonates or wordplay names. 

READ ALSO: Africa: Yesterday, today and tomorrow

In choosing a business name:

1. Be descriptive but not too general or vague.

2. Creatively use related words.

3. Keep it simple

4. Don’t copy your competitors

5. Choose a scalable name.

6. Avoid hard-to-spell names

7. Conduct a thorough Internet search.

8. Use a name that conveys some meaning.

9. Get feedback on the name

10. Make sure the name sounds good when said aloud.

These basic steps should guide you when coming up with your business name.

Choosing a logo:

“A brand logo can be described as the identity of a company, and quite often, it is the first thing that a potential customer will notice about your business and its overall operations” he says.

And in that light you have to keep your business logo as simple as possible, and keep your colors as attractive and not conflictive.

Importance of a brand logo:

1. Grabs attention

2. Makes a strong first impression (color, design, simplicity and communication).

3. It is the foundation of your brand identity

4. Keeps it visual and memorable

5. Separates you from competition

6. Fosters brand loyalty

7. Evokes emotional responses

These pointers should guide you the next time you are designing a logo for your brand.

A good logo is memorable and makes a great first impression in the minds of the customers. It should be effective at any size whether it is on a billboard or on a simple pen.

A good logo makes an impact both in color as well as in black and white monochromatic shades.

With the brand logos, details are absolutely important. Particular attention must be paid to every element of the logo such as its colors, shapes, and fonts.

All of these elements help to convey a message about your brand to the target audience.

A gym may choose to use thick and bold fonts, while a wedding planner may use fanciful, cursive fonts for its logo.

The visuals and imagery should be appropriate in nature for your company to avoid any sort of discrepancies or confusion.

All colors, shapes, images, and fonts used must be consistent with the idea that is to be communicated to the customers.

It is very important that your logo delivers the correct message about your company including its core values and objectives.

READ ALSO: Office automation in the 21st Century

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SHS graduate launches new business; flaunts rings, anklets and more

Eugenia Enyonam Datsomor is my name and I am 18 years of age. I am an SHS graduate from Aburi Girls’ Senior High School.

I reside in Tema. I have interest in writing, debating, reading and acting

I have started a business which is focused on the sale of necklaces, rings, anklets, bracelets, footwear and many more.

READ ALSO: Will the customer keep in mind?

I deliver items mainly used for dressing in order to make customers look good and feel confident at very affordable wholesale prices.

Acquiring gifts for a loved one is also made very simple and products are well-packaged in boxes.

I was inspired by my family and classmates who felt I was very good at selecting the appropriate accessories and footwear for programmes.

My target market is mainly young working ladies; I also deal in some products for men as well.

READ ALSO: A burning desire – the case of the African entrepreneur

My business fits in the African market perfectly as Africans currently like to look good whenever they are going out.

I also promote African products by selling personally handmade accessories, slippers and bags made from beads.

I had my capital from savings I had made as well as a top-up from my parents; I continue to plough back the money earned from all sales 

I have a little challenge concerning how to reach out to more people and advertise. I hope in time, it’ll be resolved.

In the next five years, I foresee my business having a wide range of products and delivering to as many people as 50 people in a day all over the country and possibly outside the country.

If I could send a message to President Akufo-Addo, I would want him to create opportunities for the youth to go into entrepreneurship in order to reduce the unemployment rate in the country.

READ ALSO: Meet Novat Karol. founder of Elimu Living Lab

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Ronald Biko Blay: Rising Ghanaian musician drops hit single; shares photos and videos

Born on the 11th May 1995 at Esiama in the Ellembelle District of the Nzema Municipality, his full name is Ronald Biko Blay, a musician and entrepreneur.

He simply goes by Ronald Blay as a stage name in the showbiz.

Other names he responds to are Mr. Blay and Still Kicking.

READ ALSO: Jimbolee drops hit song ‘Change’; fan describes him as amazing

Blay is the only male child and the last of 3 children born by his parents.

He was raised in Takoradi, where he completed his upper primary and Junior High  Education at Nazareth School in Apowa.

He studied Mechanical Engineering at Kikam Technical Institute but has an immense interest in music and reading.

Blay is constantly inspired by people who have brought positive changes into their lives as well those who focus on their God-given talent; he feels he can do the same to be an inspiration to others as well.

The funding for his music business has been quite unstable due to the fact that there is no major label or management team supporting him.

Currently, contributions from the team members and some loyal fans help to support his career.

He admits he mostly faces financial challenges and this complicates plans to get his songs played on radio and being recognized by the masses.

Blay is hopeful that in the next 5 years his music will be played and enjoyed all over the globe.

If given an opportunity to send a message to President Akufo-Addo, Blay intends to request for support for the creative art industry in Ghana.

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BilthMoment: Life After High School; Career Choices With Hannah Zoroaster Edwin

High school is the fun stage of our youthful life’s but real life sets in soon after.

What do I do now that am out of high school?

Where do I see myself in the next 1,2,3…years?; sometimes these questions become difficult to answer.

READ ALSO: Generating amazing business ideas; steps to take

When choosing a career, there are several steps one can take in realising the desired dream.

These steps or procedures differs from one person to the other and affect the end results.

Notwithstanding, there are a few strategies that help shape the ideas and thoughts in the minds of Senior High School (SHS) leavers.

There a number of creative steps one could take in order to shape the career path and attain satisfaction in life.

READ ALSO: How to find a suitable co-founder for your business

These, steps can be known as your unique ‘WIFI’.

W.I.F.I as an acronym which stands for:

W – Watch Your Interests

I – Investigate Your Options

F – Follow Your Dreams

I-I’m Interested in………. & I’ll see where it leads me

W – Watch Your Interest:

In watching your interests, you will need to make a list of things you easily do in your spare time, as well as the things you think about when your mind wanders around. 

For instance, if in your leisure time, you are someone who does not find it stressful to draw or write, then you should be looking into fields of work or career paths that make use of creative abilities.

This, in effect, will make you find satisfaction in that which you want to pursue.

I – Investigate Your Options:

There are numerous options you can choose from when you career selection path comes into play.

Therefore, as an individual, write down 5 things you would want to do after school.

Also, research and write down on 5 things you previously never considered.

This process can help you streamline your options to focus on a selected few and then helps you make final decisions on them.

F – Follow your Dreams

This part of the process is that point where everyone gets to or will come across one way or the other as you journey through life. 

Your dreams speak volumes about you as a person and this, in effect, allows you to make decisions that best suit the actualization of your career you choose to follow.

No matter how huge your dreams may seem, don’t be discouraged.

With determination and consistent work on your dreams, desired results will manifest for all to see.

I – I’m Interested in…… and  I’ll see where it leads me

In choosing career paths, venturing into new territories is one risk most people struggle with; they tend to worry more about the uncertainties of life.

This feeling is true and also cautions us in making right decisions for our future.

Focusing on your fears has a greater probability of causing you from turn your attention from areas that will, in the end, open you up to many possibilities.

The strengths and weakness of someone looking at a new career path would have to be carefully considered so that the energy of the person can be channeled appropriately.

Your dreams and aspirations cannot be sidelined as they help determine the rate of speed you will run in life and with your career.

READ ALSO: Profit or wages? choices for the young entrepreneur

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