Saturday, 8 April 2017

Hello there! 

I'm beginning to love the #UntoldStories segment so much on this blog. I'm seeing a new breed of young people who are taking deliberate steps to creating the future they want. Who said Nigeria's future is bleak? They have not been reading the interviews clearly. 😃

If you are still waiting for the government to help you, hmm you may wait long o

Today's interview is powerful. Jenroluwa is a teenager, dumped medicine for Agriculture and is making millions from his business even though he's still in school. He has a kind and gentle spirit. I met him a few weeks back and I knew I just had to bring him here. There's too much to learn from him. My people grab your notes pads and your heart ready to learn. 

The interview is live in 5, 4, 3, 2 , 1... 

Olori : Who is Jenroluwa Sotunsa?

Jenroluwa: Well, Jenroluwa is a young God-fearing up-and-coming entrepreneur, first child and only son and I’m currently running a farming enterprise (cornucopia) I’m still in school: a 400l student of agriculture at Babcock University. In addition to that, I like to pride myself as an amateur music producer in the making. I like making beats in my spare time.

Olori: The first thing that struck me about you was that you dumped medicine for Agric! Please tell us the whole story ( and dwell on the why)

Jenroluwa: LOL it sounds crazy right? In 100 level I had an assignment (from Pastor Olaore) to write out my 10-year plan, I thought it was going to be a piece of cake till I started; only to realize that I didn’t have a clearly-defined plan for my life. If I remained in Medicine by 10 years, I would be an intern in a hospital working for the junior resident who is under the senior resident who is under the consultant, you get the gist. I don’t like reading per say…I’m more of  a hands on guy so I got thinking what other options are available to me? And I remembered I always said if I don’t do medicine I’ll be a ‘land owner’ basically a farmer. 

Olori: Were you not scared of making this decision and why?

Jenroluwa: I was o, big time, I tell you! My dad is a medical doctor and has always been saying one of us is going to take over from him; I opted for medicine now I wanted to change? I was also basically going to lose all my friends – those are two things I was scared of. 

Olori: Since you started studying Agric in the university, how has it been?

Jenroluwa: LOL unexpectedly stressful but cool. I thought I was coming to chill. omo Agric no be beans ooo. I’ve had 26 units each of my last two semesters and the course runs for 5 years but I’ve not regretted it for even a moment.

Olori: What did your parents say or do when you told them your decision especially because your dad is a doctor.

Jenroluwa: My mum agreed to it surprisingly. My dad didn’t out rightly reject it but it took me a whole 4 months and some serious prayers before we agreed at ‘if you are doing Agric you will have to practicalize it too’ and in my mind I was like bring it on old man

Olori: What do you love about Agric?

Jenroluwa: Agriculture, be it livestock or plants, amazes me because farmers, are but guides, the real production is still a function of nature. And of course it provides food for mankind; most people don’t know where or how the food they eat is gotten.

Olori: It is one thing to drop medicine for Agric but something else to start a poultry. Was the poultry part of the plan from the beginning?

Jenroluwa: Well let’s say it came up at the beginning in the way and was a sort of test from my parents to see if I was really determined and not some ‘omo butter’. I started out with 150 birds (50 broilers for meat and 100 layers for eggs) beginning of last year now I have capacity of about 1000 birds. 

Olori: Tell us what informed the decision to start a poultry?

Jenroluwa: I honestly can’t really point out one thing in particular…it couldn’t have been my love for fried chicken. 

Olori: We know you are a big man but on the average give us a glimpse into how much you make from your business in a month. Just a glimpse.

Jenroluwa: Well…………… let’s just say I earned my second million within the year. 

Olori: How do you manage school and business?

Jenroluwa: It’s not easy but keeping in mind my academics I had to hire someone to help out with the poultry and I halted my planting activities till the summers when I have time

Olori: Now that you’ve said you earn big money, many people are interested o. What should anyone who wants to go into your line of business take note of?

Jenroluwa: First, research well into any business venture you want to get involved in; not only that someone said it is profitable.Get real facts like how much will it take to start it off?How much will it take to run the business? 

What are the dangers of the business?Is there a ready-market?How many people already produce such in your area?And so on…

Secondly, have mentors who are already in such business to teach you the ropes, My third advice will be don’t spend your profits re-invest it in the business at least for the first 3-5 years, 

NEVER take your customers for granted: word of mouth is the best advert channel you can get; pay attention to your CRM, that is,Customer Relationship Management

NEVER falter in your records everything you buy and sell how much stuff you produced should be recorded and add transport labour cost etc.To your expenses if not you won’t know when you are making a loss, when you break even or how much profit you make if you do make profit.

Start small: the learning curve is the best teacher better than when someone tells you but you don’t want an expensive loss due to the fact that you are just learning things the hard way

Pay your tithe and offering to God He is still God never forget him in any business you venture into

When you start selling in your mind you might see it as asking for money because your first customers will be family, friends, and church members. It is business: an exchange of money for services it’s all good don’t give out discounts anyhow

Olori: As a student and CEO, what do you do to relax when you are stressed?

Jenroluwa: I listen to music or I create music (I produce music low key) or I read NARUTO fan fiction or other anime or watch a movie or play NFS on my system or 2048 on my phone or chill out with my guys.

Olori: What is the biggest business challenge you have faced and how did you overcome it?

Jenroluwa: Biggest business challenge……. Hmmm I think its record keeping and marketing. 

For record-keeping I had to make it a conscious effort and I had receipt and invoice books produced to help and I kept them in strategic places to aid access. 

With regards to marketing I realized I confined myself to people I and my family knew but I have learnt to spread my wings there are about 170 million people to feed in Nigeria alone. 

Olori: Since I know you are not an alien, you have probably felt discouraged a number of times. Can you share the story of when you were at your lowest point and what did you do to pick yourself up?

Jenroluwa: There was this period when I took my second set of layers 1000 birds and half of them died and I wasn’t doing well in my mid semesters simply put I was not smiling.It was not even funny again and I didn’t really have friends close I had just changed course not too long ago so I wasn’t close to my classmates my friends in medicine were writing their exams and I was off-campus but I prayed and prayed also if I’m not happy I keep others happy can’t let life weigh me down so much people would be unhappy because I’m around sulking. Church was a also big help some people in church like Tunde Obafemi and some other people; good music too like I believe by Mali music, Here Is My Heartby LaurenDaigle and others…….

Olori: Apart from God, who would you say has had the biggest influence on you?

Jenroluwa: In life generally and my behavior my dad (and to a lesser extent the anime character naruto) he is this go lucky guy that everybody around his sphere of influence comes out a better person. 

In the business my mum she may be a professor of English but mehn the woman knows how to run a business. 

Olori: Please complete these statements.

Jenroluwa: One day my company will…feed nations

One day Jenroluwa will…be a man worthy to be a role model to the younger generation and bring souls to Christ through the way he leads his life and also sponsor medical missions to parts of the world in need of them. 

Olori : What’s your advice to somebody stuck studying a course or doing a job they absolutely hate or are unhappy with?

Jenroluwa: For someone stuck in a course you don’t like just do your best in it till you are done but you can always improve yourself on what you really love though we are in an economy that needs skilled people not necessarily the degrees .The degrees will lift you higher than the average Joe but it is the skills you bring to the table that truly set you apart and pray and fast ooo it’s needed

If it’s a job you hate it you can’t stand out because of the lack of passion for it. Pray for God’s guidance before any decision you make or want to make.

You can reach Jenroluwa on facebook or send him a mail 

He's also on Sound cloud as Jay- Show. 

Now do you agree with me that his interview was amazing?

If you know any young person that has an amazing story please drop the name and social media handle in the comment section.

Much Love


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