TEAMWORK: THE SECRET TO EXTRAORDINARY RESULTS

“Individual commitment to a group effort–that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” –Vince Lombardi

You may be very outstanding at what you do. For instance, you may be the best student in your class, or the best singer in your group, or the best player in your team. You may win prizes and have the whole world recognize you. Having that level of recognition is commendable, but you must learn how to work in a team if you want extraordinary results.

A team is a group with a common goal, and if you look around you, you will find that you inevitably belong to a team or group. You are a member of your family group, your class, church or mosque, village, local government, state, and country. In some cases, you don’t choose the groups you belong to—for example, your family, ethnic group, or country. However, your goal should be to work for the success of your groups.

Have you seen how ants work? They usually come together to take on more challenging tasks. When an ant tries to lift a crumb of biscuit and discovers it can’t do it alone by its effort, the ant looks for other ants to help it out. Before long, what seemed impossible for one ant to do becomes easy when other ants contribute their energy. Don’t despise members’ commitment to a group or the power of every group member committing a little of their effort to the same goals. Success becomes more accessible with such a mindset.

Part of the problem of being in a group is that the other members of your group may not be behaving how you want. But the onus is on you, who has the knowledge to do the right thing always. Because everyone in your class is not studying to pass but depending on others to help them pass should not stop you from learning. When you behave differently from the other members of a group who do the wrong things, you mark yourself out for greatness. Your right actions will inspire someone else, and before long other people will follow suit. It will then become easier to succeed when more people in your group behave in the same way. These things can be as simple as the members of your group being polite.

As the quote above implies, you must be committed to a group effort if you want things to work. When you are in a group, and things are not working the way you want, ask yourself if you are working in the group’s interest. For instance, you have a group assignment in your class, and your part is to research the project while the other people write it up. Failure is inevitable if you don’t do your part because your other group members will not have anything to write on. Groups or teams function because the individual members are committed to the efforts of the group.

Do you want your family, class, team, community, state, or country to succeed or work? You must play your part, which may be as essential as doing the right thing even if every other person is doing otherwise. Be part of the solution and not a problem to your group.

I know this topic is huge so let’s hear your questions and comments in the comments section below.

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Besidone Ebule is the Project Director at B2SL, where he works to encourage personal development and build success networks. You can contact him at bessy.ebule@b2sl.org.

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USING YOUR KNOWLEDGE FOR SUCCESS

Knowledge is a broad concept with no possible ending. Acquiring knowledge involves steps such as communication, logic, perception, and cognitive processes. Knowledge is a human’s capacity to identify and accept the truth. However, it can be used for positive and negative purposes, thus giving the power to create and destroy. Knowledge can be used for personal, community, state, or national growth when used positively.

Knowledge impacts and influences our growth and relationship with work and life. It can last for a lifetime and is essential for personal growth and development. One can acquire knowledge through many forms such as art, dance, history, architecture, or even from one’s personal development. Your abilities based on what you know help you make life-changing decisions. 

When you know something, you have an advantage over others who do not. For example, suppose you are the only one who knows the solution to a complex calculus problem in your class. In that case, the advantage you have over others is that you will pass when it’s time for the examination, while others who are ignorant will fail. Your teachers and parents will be impressed, your classmates will envy you, and you might win a prize for excellence. That is an advantage for you. 

There are two ways you can look at this scenario. The first is to enjoy being the only solution to the problem and let every other person envy you. The second one is to share the knowledge with others in your class to have more people who can win prizes for excellence. The second scenario seems to be more beneficial and rewarding for everyone because even if you share what you know with other people; you don’t become ignorant; you become more knowledgeable. 

Our world needs more people who understand the power of knowledge and how it can make the world a better place. When we look at developed societies, what we see is the use of knowledge to benefit everyone. Without this, life becomes challenging for people and difficult to progress. Knowledge is an essential tool to obtain positive changes in our society, and we must be ready to embrace this fact.

Someone once said that knowledge helps people to bloom and keeps them away from corruption. It brings prosperity and happiness to one’s community or nation. Above all, expertise opens the door to success.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Abubakar Suleiman is a secondary school student. He is dedicated to success in his academics and future career. He is a member of B2SL Success Hub.

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THE WRONG USE OF KNOWLEDGE

“He who knows nothing is closer to the truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods and errors.” – Thomas Jefferson

Knowledge is said to be the currency of destiny that determines ones’ purchasing power in the marketplace of life. Our ability to get the most out of life depends on how much we know and how well we use our knowledge. However, many people have used what they learned in the wrong way, with negative impacts on them and humanity. For example, Adolf Hitler and Idi Amin of Uganda abused knowledge combined with the power they had to manipulate humans for their selfish and greedy agenda.

Man has evolved from a simple primate to a complex intellectual being and has used knowledge to solve seemingly impossible problems. For instance, the invention of automobiles, telecommunication gadgets, ATMs, and lots more came into existence due to the wealth of knowledge man has. Knowledge makes you powerful and puts you at an advantage over others. But you must refrain from exploiting and manipulating others because of what you know.

You may have seen some students who prepare expos or what is known as “gadgets” to enter the exam hall. I think they will have better results if they channel the time and creativity they use in preparing those chips to read their books. Some students take advantage of their illiterate parents to ask for fees such as Medulla Oblongata money. You should not use your knowledge to cheat your parents or anyone.

Some students also misuse their knowledge of a subject to mock the ignorance of others. What you know should be for the good of others and not just yourself. Suppose you understand a concept in economics or Information Technology better. In that case, you should be willing to share what you know rather than keeping it to yourself and mocking every other person.  

Some people use their knowledge to falsify, tamper or even wholly change records and other vital documents, which may cause loss to an organization or person. When people act like this, we have a world devoid of morals, empathy, and sympathy. 

Finally, try to be productive but not in the wrong assignment. You should use your knowledge correctly.

I encourage you to keep using your knowledge in the right way, and we can be sure of a better world.

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Henry Ibrahim is the Content Creator at B2SL. He loves working with young people to help them discover their purpose in life. You can contact him at ibrahim@b2sl.org.

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BUILDING YOUR REPERTOIRE OF KNOWLEDGE

“The larger the island of knowledge, the longer the shoreline of wonder.” – Ralph Sockman

To be successful in your academics and career, you definitely will need to build on specific kinds of knowledge as you actually cannot assimilate all the knowledge in the world. With so much information presented to you at this time, comes the need to be clear on what kind of knowledge you need to go for so as to become successful.

For example there is specific information you will need to know and build on if you want to become a professional dancer that someone that wants to become a teacher might not need. There are certain things a student offering chemistry that a student offering government doesn’t need to know. It therefore is on you as a student to pay detailed attention to the things you need to know so you can build your knowledgeable base on them for success.

With respect to career, you can’t be aspiring to get to the highest positions like becoming a manager or CEO someday and not have knowledge of soft skills like communication, interpersonal relationship, problem solving and critical thinking. These are some knowledge that we at B2SL are feeding students on now so they can start early with building these skills via available resources.

Mark Zuckerberg the founder of Facebook started building knowledge that made him successful very early enough. As early as 13 years when he was in Junior Secondary School, he started using computers and developing software. Around the same period, he started creating computer games by watching YouTube videos. By the time he was in Senior Secondary School, he worked under the company name Intelligent Media Group to build a music player called the Synapse Media Player. The device used machine learning to learn the user’s listening habits. By the time Zuckerberg began classes at Harvard in 2002, he had already achieved a “reputation as a programming prodigy.” It was in the university he started creating what we know as Facebook today that has made him one of the richest men in the world today with a total net worth of $111.5billion as at 1st April, 2021.

If Zuckerberg was able to build on some set of knowledge with which he became successful today, it means you too can become successful if you are able to build on the needed knowledge that is relevant to your career path.

I will love to hear from you so I can get to know the knowledge you are building on today for future success.

I wish you all the best as you keep building knowledge for success in your academics and career.

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Charles Adimah is an entrepreneur and the Project Manager of B2SL INITIATIVE, where he manages the vision. He is a great believer that a prosperous Nigeria is a product of successful Nigerians. You can reach him via email at charles@b2sl.org.

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WHY KNOWLEDGE IS IMPORTANT

“The person who admits ignorance shows it once; the one who tries to hide it shows it often.” – Japanese proverb.

We live in the information age, which replaced the traditional industry birthed by the Industrial Revolution. Our generation has an amount of accessible information unprecedented in human history. The information we have in this age has changed the way we live dramatically and continues to do so at a pace that sometimes seems overwhelming. We can now do things more efficiently and faster, most times with just the touch of a button. The easiest way to relate to this is to think of how quickly it is to send a message or make a phone call to another part of the world. Success in the world today depends a lot on what you know and here are some reasons why knowledge is essential.

 

KNOWLEDGE BRINGS MORE KNOWLEDGE

The more you know, the easier it will be for you to learn new things. The less you know, the harder it will be for you to learn new things in the same vein. Have you ever wondered why you had to learn the English alphabet letters before you learned two letter words? Once you know you know the letters of the alphabet, you can easily add them together to start forming words starting from the easiest. These days, before children even learn the alphabet, they learn phonic sounds, e.g., ‘A’ as in ‘apple.’ The child can pronounce apple because a part of it relates to the phonic sound already known. If you want to know more, you have to learn more, and in many cases, you have to go back to the basics. You can apply the same concept in science, engineering, music, business, or any other human endeavour field. Little wonder why the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer!

 

KNOWLEDGE HELPS YOU SOLVE PROBLEMS

Whenever you have a problem, you require a solution. For example, if you are not very good at Maths, you will need to master the concepts. If you want to learn music, you will need to master the notes, tunes, time signature, etc. Ignorance hinders you, but knowledge liberates you. If you are sick, you go to the doctor to get well. You have to take the drugs prescribed by the doctor. The difference between you and the doctors is knowledge they have. A doctor’s training is to solve health problems, so when you go to them, they draw on their understanding of the problem and think about a possible solution before prescribing drugs. Do you want to solve the problems in your life? Then seek knowledge in a particular area. The more you know, the more problems you can solve.

 

KNOWLEDGE HELPS YOU SEE PROBLEMS DIFFERENTLY

Successful people have a different mindset, usually because of what they know. When there is a problem in society, you need a solution. But most people would instead analyse the problem endlessly than proffer a workable solution. For instance, the outbreak of Covid-19 has disrupted the world since 2019. While most people were interpreting the problem, some pharmaceutical companies went to work to produce a vaccine. Today, we have vaccines against Covid-19 in many parts of the world. What was the difference? The pharmaceutical companies saw the problem differently. They saw it as an opportunity to save lives as well as make a profit. You can apply the principle to your life as well. When you have a problem, how do you see it? If you do not see your problems as an opportunity for growth, you need to increase your knowledge in that area.

The world is crying out for solutions to problems in many areas of human endeavour. Identify one and decide to be a solution. But first, seek knowledge and you will not regret it.

I will love to hear from you to know what knowledge you are getting and the problems you are deciding to solve. Let me know your thoughts or questions in the comments section below.

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Besidone Ebule is the Project Director at B2SL, where he works to encourage personal development and build success networks. You can contact him at bessy.ebule@b2sl.org.

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OVERCOMING DISBELIEF

Have you ever had an idea, and in your head, the idea would work perfectly? And you tell a few friends who discourage you? They give you what you may see as formidable reasons not to continue with your once excellent idea. Suddenly, you concur with them and see your fantastic idea as trash. That is disbelief or doubt.

Disbelief can be said to be the unwillingness or inability to believe that an idea, thought, vision is possible. Many things can bring about doubt. It might be peer pressure, or maybe surrounding situations, low self-esteem (feeling that you can’t just do it), or a life of mediocrity. But one fact is this disbelief always hinders the birth of life-changing innovations.

From our last blog post, we saw that Henry Ford, despite his very humble beginnings (a farmer’s family) he went on to invent low-cost cars. He had many reasons for disbelief. His Mom’s early death, family background, and environmental situation (use of horse-ridden carts was prevalent at that time), but Ford still went on to achieve his dreams. He overcame disbelief. If He did, then you too can, but the question is HOW?

Since one major cause of disbelief is the fear of failure, anyone willing to overcome doubt must overcome fear. One should always have in mind that failure is always a step closer to success. We should see failure as an opportunity to re-strategize and aim higher instead of a setback. Another way is always to have the “I Can” mentality. We should always know that we can achieve anything we set our minds to achieve. Our minds can limit us. The moment we believe that we really can, our brain, by reflex, begins to search for possibilities. 

We can also overcome disbelief by seeking help and advice from like-minded senior friends and mentors. We should learn to discard direction that tends to limit us and always embrace those that give us more reasons to put more effort. 

Lastly, we can overcome disbelief by always aiming for excellence. We should always push forward till we achieve the success we deserve. We must have the determination, concentration, and commitment to get what we want. Of course, by doing this, disbelief would undoubtedly become a thing of the past.

Let’s continue to work, set lofty goals, work on them, and believe that they can come true, and they usually will come to pass.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Noble Uzoagba just finished his senior secondary certificate exam. He is dedicated to success in his academics and future career. He is a member of B2SL Success Hub.

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WHY YOU SHOULD BELIEVE

Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right– Henry Ford.

Henry Ford revolutionized the automobile industry in America and the world. Henry believed that middle-class Americans could own a car of their own. He achieved this dream by building the Model T, which most Americans drove by the 1920s. The Model T was $825 in 1908 and was regarded as very cheap then. The car was also straightforward to drive and simple to repair. This revolution took place in an age when horses were still used to pull wheels from one point to the other. Henry Ford sparked a revolution that would replace horses with engines. That was a very daring move!

Ford’s parents were farmers, and his father expected him to take over the farm when his mother died. But Ford did not want to farm. He occupied himself with repairing watches and working on engines. Ford left home after his mother’s death to work as an apprentice machinist. When he returned home, he worked on building a steam wagon, and by 1892, Ford built his first car, which he drove around for over a thousand miles between 1893 and 1996. In his writing, Ford wrote that the machine was going partially to his satisfaction. Ford was able to achieve his dream even though it took some time because he believed. All plans take time to come true in the school of success.

What can we learn from Henry Ford? He had a dream that middle-class people could own and drive their cars. In those days, only rich people could afford horses and carriages. So, Ford was looking for a way to make life easier for other people. Imagine the number of car manufacturing companies we have in the world today. Secondly, Ford was determined to achieve his dream. He could have been a farmer as his father wanted him to be, and there is nothing wrong with farming. But Ford knew that there was something else inside of him that the world needed! That should be everyone’s driving force.

Most people will succeed if they believe, and that includes you. Other people may not think that you can achieve the dream, but it is up to you to continue to fight for what you believe as far as it will positively impact the world. The plan may not be building an automobile like Henry Ford; it could be you wanting to join a local volunteering group or starting something that will impact your community. Maybe you want to clean your compound or water the flowers. Your dream can only become a reality if you believe in it.

No dream is too small to achieve because all dreams require time and effort to become a reality. Remember that successful people extraordinarily do ordinary things!

Identify your dreams and chase them with all your strength. Believe in them, and you will see them likely come to pass. I will be happy to hear the dream you have decided to pursue in the comments section below.

See you at the top.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Besidone Ebule is the Project Director at B2SL, where he works to encourage personal development and build success networks. You can contact him at bessy.ebule@b2sl.org.

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BELIEVE IN YOURSELF

Tragedy strikes when success dies in failure, hope dies in despair, and visions die in the absence of confidence”-Dr. Myles Munroe.

You can excel in life. Successful believe in and capitalize on their abilities, while unsuccessful people do not. You may be thinking that you cannot achieve specific grades, cannot understand some topics, or cannot learn a skill. However, you will be surprised at how many people have come from the other side of failure to success. When I was in primary school, my class girls were at the top for more than three years. We thought the girls were better than us because they were from fairly well-to-do families. But something interesting happened when my friend and I challenged ourselves to improve our grades. We decided to aim for the top positions in the class, although the girls were not aware of this challenge. The following term, my friend took the first position while I came third. I learned that in the quest to succeed, you would be competing against yourself first.

As an African proverb says, “If there is no enemy within, the enemy without can do us no harm”. In this case, the enemy within is the negative voice telling you that you cannot make it. There could also be people around you who consistently make you feel that you have nothing to offer in life. It sucks when your teacher tells you that you are a terrible student or when your brother or sister tells you that you should forget about singing or doing any other thing. You have to believe in yourself even if others do not. Try seeing negative comments about you as a challenge that you have to overcome to succeed. 

Let’s say you are struggling with Mathematics, for example. You can choose to believe whether you want to become better or not. You can challenge yourself to ensure that you go for extra lessons, ask questions, and work with other students to become better. But first, there has to be that belief in you. If you don’t believe that you can succeed, you never will, as no one becomes successful by accident. Remind yourself from time to time that you are qualified to excel, and you will be motivated to pursue your dreams. You will be amazed at what you can accomplish.

Start believing in yourself and make yourself relevant in the world.

I hope to hear your thoughts on your questions and comments in the section below.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Henry Ibrahim is the Content Creator at B2SL. He loves working with young people to help them discover their purpose in life. You can contact him at ibrahim@b2sl.org.

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BELIEVING FOR SUCCESS

“It always seems impossible until it is done” – Nelson Mandela.

Everyone who has succeeded in this world believed in something that others in the society may not have supported. The belief inspires them to take some very bold actions that put their names on history pages. President John F. Kennedy (JFK) was the 35th president of the United States and had the dream of sending men to the moon and returning safely to earth.

JFK’s conviction was that America could land a man on the moon before the end of the decade. His dream was not easy to accept. The mission would cost $22 billion and hundreds of thousands of people working to achieve the objective. Despite the criticisms, The Apollo 11 mission was launched on July 16, 1969, when Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins jetted into space. On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first man to land foot on the moon, followed by Buzz Aldrin. Over half a million people watched the epic event on TV, which was a massive step for humanity. Kennedy was no longer alive, but his dream was a success story. 

The story of a man landing on the moon is awe-inspiring, but it took someone who believed it could succeed to start it. If JFK had given up because others did not believe in his dream, perhaps the glory would have gone to someone else.

There is no good vision of success that other people will not doubt or even openly criticize. The painful thing is that sometimes the people who are closest to you are the ones who will challenge you the most. But you do not have to give up on your dream because of other people’s doubts.

I encourage you to start believing in and chasing your dreams. They may not be as big as landing a man on the moon, but they can be little things for a start that you can manage. For example, learning to set daily personal development tasks such as reading and networking, having a routine exercise, or learning a new skill. It may not be easy at the beginning because of incompetence, but you will begin to find things more comfortable as time goes on. When you have achieved your goal, people will have no other option but to believe in you. That’s the way it works in the school of success.

So, what is stopping you? What is the legitimate dream burning inside of you that you need to chase? I think there is no better time for you than now to start because you have time on your side! Go for your dreams whether people believe you or not, and you will not regret them in the end.

We’ll be happy at B2SL to support you with the resources and inspiration you need to achieve your dreams. Take advantage of the opportunity and make your mark in the world.

Do not hesitate to drop your comments or questions in the comments section below, and we’ll respond to you asap.

I wish you all the best.

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Besidone Ebule is the Project Director at B2SL, where he works to encourage personal development and build success networks. You can contact him at bessy.ebule@b2sl.org.

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HOW TO FIGHT THE BARRIER OF MEDIOCRITY

Mediocrity is the quality of being average or not very good, while barriers prevent people from moving forward. Our actions and thoughts may hinder us from being extraordinary. Everyone on earth is liable to barriers, irrespective of the task ahead. It all depends on our attitude towards it. Below are some ways we can fight mediocrity.

The first thing is to have a goal. Most people do not have a specific purpose. They do something either because other people are doing it or feel it’s just a way of life. I was shocked when I once overheard a university student say to his friend that he did not care about his grades. All he wanted was to go to school, collect his certificate and move on with his life. His friend was trying to caution him, but he didn’t even mind a Third Class. The student had no goal and cannot be extraordinary.  Thomas Edison had a dream to create the electric bulb, and he did it years ago.  Today, his name is lingering on. Ben Carson had a goal of being a neurosurgeon. he is today one of the pioneers in his field.

The second thing to note is determination and dedication. You might have a goal, but are you determined and dedicated to accomplishing it? Thomas Edison had a dream, but he was also determined and dedicated to it even after failing a hundred times. If you read about Ben Carson, you would know that his journey was not comfortable, but his determination and dedication paved the way for him despite the barriers.

The last thing to note is never to give up. No matter the barriers, keep pressing forward. Thomas Edison said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.” The surest way to succeed is always to try just one more time. You never can tell when you will excel.

In conclusion, Michael Bassey Johnson said, “There’s no greater secret on how to attain a greater height, just keep climbing the ladder; don’t look at the dreadful distance, lockup that negative thought today, and fulfill your dreams.” Don’t be satisfied with being mediocre!

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Aiyedusho Victoria Oluwayimika just finished her senior secondary certificate exam. She is dedicated to success in her academics and future career. She is a member of B2SL Success Hub.

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