Home Entrepreneurs Doing business comes naturally to me — Bejide

Doing business comes naturally to me — Bejide

by Ozva Admin

A researcher, scientist and businessman, Ifeoluwa Bejide, tells FAITH AJAYI about your business

What Are your educational qualifications?

For my primary education, I attended Ecwa Kindergarten and Elementary School in Akure, Ondo State. I went to Redeemers High School, Mowe, Ogun State.

I then obtained a degree in microbiology from the University of Redeemers, Ede, Osun State. I also have a Masters in Medical Microbiology from the same university.

What services does your business provide?

I sell women’s clothing and accessories. I am also a fashion designer and illustrator. She also runs a brand development business, where she trains entrepreneurs and teaches people new digital skills.

How were you able to raise funds to start the business?

I started with little capital when I was still in high school (SSS3). When I got admission to the university about nine years ago, I took it seriously. Then students started coming to me requesting different things, and I kept adding those items to my stock list. My room practically became a mini store. I thank God that I now have a physical store.

What are the challenges you face in business?

In the initial stage, there was not so much capital. So, I had to start small and wait until I was done selling products before buying new games. Lack of funds did not allow me to buy products in bulk. But I finally got over that challenge. I realized that in business, capital will probably never be enough; especially with the rising cost of things in the country. The clearing and import fees right now can drive one crazy. Also, some customers are still not willing to pay for delivery. Initially it only made home deliveries throughout the country, so it was a limitation for potential customers who stayed out of the country. But now, we handle delivery all over the world.

Another challenge was that many clients and friends owe one, no matter how hard you try to avoid it. And recovering those debts is often a challenge. But, things are looking up, and now there are easier methods to recover debts.

How did you overcome the challenges you mentioned?

Trying new methods and listening to customer feedback, to constantly improve. Also, I now use billing and accounting apps. I also opened a website for my business to reduce the debt level of clients. In order for a customer to successfully purchase from the website, they must pay in full.

In the delivery area, I have also changed to a better plan with a better logistics service.

How do you get clients?

Through referrals and on social media platforms like Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook. Some customers also just walk into the store

How do you handle customers online?

There are different types of customers that one finds in business. They can be calm, understanding, rude, or direct. One would even run into clients who want to defraud him.

I have learned to be really kind and cheerful no matter what kind of negativity I receive from a client. A client recently told me that one of the reasons they kept coming back to patronize me was because of how humble and polite I was.

Did you undergo any type of training before entering the business?

No, I did not do it. Doing business comes naturally to me. Also, it runs in my family. I have been exposed to selling items since I was little.

What is the main support you have received since you started the business?

My greatest support has come from my family, contrary to what some people say that families do not support their businesses. In the initial stage of my business, my mother used to do the deliveries. She would take the products to the park, call the customers and even follow up with them.

My sister has also been wonderful. She ‘gets me excited’ and is very supportive of my business. She sponsors me and recommends me to many of her friends. I also have friends who carry my bags of clothes, advertise on my behalf, and expect nothing in return.

How do you run your business and still have time to do other things?

Many people ask me this question. While I don’t want to sound like a ‘cliché’, it’s actually by the grace of God, because it’s so hard to explain. But, looking at it from a more physical angle, proper planning and discipline have also helped me. I dedicate time to my business, and to other things. I work very well over time. If I decide to spend two hours a day posting commercial content on my social media accounts, I would not exceed that time. I think there is time for everything.

Have you ever thought about quitting smoking?

I know this may sound unbelievable; But, I’ve never thought of giving up. I don’t believe in giving up. However, I have taken breaks when necessary.

What are your other areas of interest?

I have a talk show where I talk about life, facing experiences and expectations. I am also interested in doing research.

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