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Tips - November 25, 2021

Lessons from Daily Habits of 5 Successful African Business Leaders

It is not a coincidence that every successful entrepreneur cultivates healthy daily habits.

It is not a coincidence that every successful entrepreneur cultivates healthy daily habits. That’s because they understand the importance of being intentional, consistent, and dedicated. They have also mastered the art of taking small steps every day towards achieving significant results, which research has proven is the fastest way to success.

This piece highlights the successful daily habits of some of Africa’s most revered entrepreneurs and how we can learn from them.

Aliko Dangote 

Chairman and CEO of Dangote Group

For any business to succeed, you must be in charge of your time. Being timely is essential, and this can be seen in the life of Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote. Every day, he wakes by 5:30 am, prays, runs 10 kilometres, gets to the office by 8:30 am, and works for 18 hours. Dangote considers his job as a hobby.

“I don’t really take my job as something I have to do. It is my hobby. Twenty-four hours in a day really is not enough,” he said in an interview as contained in a KPMG CEO Outlook edition.

To him, there is the need to be in charge and responsible for what you do. “For any company to be successful, the main objective for any CEO is to make sure there’s ownership. Some of our competitors are not doing well because there’s nothing like ownership in their businesses. We try to train our people on that they must be committed and have ownership of the business. Don’t take it as something that you’re doing just to earn a salary,” Dangote adds. 

Tara Fela Durotoye

Founder and CEO, House of Tara International

A common denominator for all high achievers is time. They are all early birds. Tara’s day begins as early as 4:00 am.

“…I wake up to pray, meditate and put my goals for the day in perspective. Then I wake the boys up and get them ready to leave the house. I drop them off at school, and usually, by 7:45 am, I start to work through my to-do list. Next, I join the staff for our daily prayer session and move to executive meetings with department heads. The rest of my day varies from meetings with distributors, banks, or members of my board of directors,” she says in a CNN interview.

Tony Elumelu

Chairman of Heirs Holdings, the United Bank of Africa, Transcorp and founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation

For every business to thrive, hard work is essential, but there should be a balance. As busy as Elumelu’s schedule, he admits the need to balance work and personal life. 

“…You have to balance spiritual and physical wellbeing with domestic family responsibilities and with your business and social relationships,” he says.

He believes hard work is a habit that all aspiring entrepreneurs must imbibe but balance with other aspects. According to him, “success is made up of 1% dreams and 99% hard work.” It means, until you birth your dream with hard work, it will remain only a dream. 

Odunayo Eweniyi

Co-founder and Chief Operations Officer PiggyVest and Co-founder of Feminist Coalition

Whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well. This fintech startup founder says her to-do list is the first thing she writes when she wakes up. She uses Notions, a notetaking and project management software, to structure her tasks and, after that, starts her morning routine – taking her bath, etc.

After setting up her workspace at work, she takes out a few minutes to banter with her colleagues over, usually, unserious matters. According to her, it’s a way to lighten the atmosphere for easy workflow.

“It can be a problem we have at work, it could be a movie they watched last night, anything, just to kind of loosen everyone up. And after like 10 to 15 minutes of that then I can go sit down at my workspace and begin the day,” Odunayo tells TechPoint.

Musty Mustapha

Co-founder and CTO of Kuda

Every day is different for Musty. In the morning, he prays and does light workouts. He checks his work dashboard to ensure things are in order and working smoothly. Then, he confirms his schedule for the day and checks his emails. The rest of his day is from one meeting to another, replying to emails, and so on. Even though he dislikes the routines, he still does them, showing discipline and consistency.

 

READ ALSO: Here is How African Entrepreneurs can Build a Successful Business

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