In a country where over 95 million people live in extreme poverty, becoming and staying a millionaire is no mean feat. So, we decided to speak to people who have amassed wealth to discover the principles that contributed to their financial success.
Here’s what they had to say:
“I keep money aside for investment and emergencies” — Kola, Lawyer
Growing up, my mum ensured my siblings and I always saved our money. She even went as far as buying kolos for us. This helped me develop a good savings habit that is still a part of me to this day. For every income I make, I always ensure I keep money aside for investment and emergencies.
My first million wasn’t any different. I used half of it to purchase plots of land in Lekki, which was underdeveloped at the time. 15 years later, I sold that land for about ₦20 million. This elevated my financial status.
“I live below my means” — Niyi, Marketer
Although I earn ₦800k/month, I have investments and assets worth over ₦30 million. This is possible because I live below my means. I live in an area considered to be the outskirts of Lagos, don’t wear designer clothes and drive an old car model. My children’s education is my biggest expense.
Living below my means makes it easy for me to use my money to buy equity shares, mutual funds and real estate with high-interest rates.
“I know how to use debt wisely” — Oluwasanmi, Financial Analyst
Knowing how to use debt wisely significantly contributed to my financial success. After I started earning well and developed good creditworthiness, I borrowed money from the bank to purchase some tech stocks and real estate. Initially, this seemed like a risky decision, but it paid off as those stocks generated dividends that made me a millionaire.
“I’m constantly learning high-income skills and job hopping” — Jennifer, Software Engineer
I believe earning more is what makes you financially successful. And so, I’m constantly learning high-income skills and job hopping. Between 2019 and now, I’ve had four jobs that helped me achieve an income increase of 2,000%.
“I always try to build good relationships” — Bola, Startup Founder
Previously, I believed hard work was enough to make you rich. However, after becoming friends with a Venture Capitalist who made it easy for me to secure millions in investment for my startup, my mindset changed. Having good connections will make you rich faster than just hard work.
As a result, I always try to build good relationships with my peers, juniors and successful people. I do this by attending relevant events, reaching out and staying in touch, and adding value first. Currently, I have a strong network of people who can help me with ₦100 million in a matter of minutes.
“I delegate grunt work to other people and focus on money-making activities” — Mary, Energy Company Founder
Ever since my dad forced me to read Rich Dad, Poor Dad as a teenager, I knew trading time cannot help you build sustainable wealth. Instead, you need to work smarter and take advantage of other people’s time, money, skills, resources and systems.
This explains why I became an entrepreneur. My business allows me to delegate to others, free my time, and focus on money-making activities like sourcing clients.