Episode 4 – The Hustle is Real
The loud sound of an angry honking car jolted Tola from his trance-like meditative state. He was sitting at Ndubuisi Kanu park Ikeja thinking about his fashion business and the progress he had made over the last 6 months since he left his organization to start his own business.
The business was not moving at the pace he expected, he was making weekly sales to individuals but his goal was to sell wholesale to boutiques and fashion retail outlets. He had sent proposals to over 20 fashion retail outlets in the city, two of the outlets accepted his proposal and had made a few sales but he honestly expected more, considering the amount of time, energy and resources he had put into this.
Gba! Came a sound behind him that startled him, it was Azuka who just sneaked up behind him and before he could say a word, he started to hail him CEO! Respect! ‘which kind CEO?’ Tola said in pidgin English. ‘this thing no easy o!’ he went ahead to recount to his friend the many challenges he had been through, as if he was not aware of it. He knew Azuka was aware of all this but he was starting to feel a little frustration and he just needed to vent.
Tailors and dispatch riders are the two sets of people that have pledged to give him heart attack in this business. But he is slowly learning how to manage them. He now gives his tailors deadline almost a week earlier, he normally pushes them to deliver at that time so that even if they fail, he would still have some time to keep his promise to his clients.
He was actually making sales and a little profit to maintain himself, but he wasn’t making enough money to make any significant reinvestment in the business and if he keeps moving at this rate, he doesn’t know how he is going to scale the business. Except if he wins that grant he applied for earlier in the year. As he mentioned the grant, Azuka informed him that the list of winners was out a week before. On hearing that Tola quickly went to their website to check the list. As he scrolled down the list he suddenly paused and started shouting hey!!!