Breaking Into The Cucumber Market
I promised God that any secret He will teach me to create wealth, I must share it with others. I don’t hoard knowledge. I have always shared my experiences with people.
I’m not afraid of what you can do to me. I’m not really afraid of death, but I want to live long and be healthy so as to bless others with my ideas.
I’m like a perfume; if I remain corked in the bottle, my fragrance will not be appropriated. The more people I perfume, the more my value. The more people I spice their lives, the less despised I am. The more I season people, the more I remain in season. If I inspire people regularly, then I won’t expire in their lives. That is part of eternity—when you live in people’s lives even when you are not with them. The greatest thanksgiving is not in cash or cows; it is when people daily thank God because of your life.
We went to the farm yesterday and harvested cucumbers again from where we harvested a few days back and had gotten five-and-a-half bags of cucumbers. I learnt that your eyes must always be on your crops and animals. The few days we did not go, a lot of cucumbers got spoilt. The fruits grow very fast.
I make bold to say that one of the easiest ways to come out of unemployment and poverty is through cucumber farming. I never knew this before.
My wife, my driver, my brother’s wife and one of my workers weeded grass from our water melons, and then we left my wife to go harvest cucumbers. We were shocked at what we got, and marketing them was a new challenge again.
Breaking Into Any Market
You must be passionate about your business, services, and products.
I slept by about 4:30 a.m. after writing the first post of today on My Vision of Raising One Million African Millionaires. I woke up a few minutes after 6 a.m. I left my phone on just in case my new customer called. And she did call that she was in the market already at Warri, about 32 kilometres from my house. I quickly called my driver, took my bath, had a cup of coffee, and I left for Warri. In fact, I finished the coffee at the gate. You can’t be wealthy or make any headway in life if you are not passionate.
Your body and your mind will want to rest, but remember Proverbs 6:10-11: “A little sleep, a little slumber, and a little folding of my hands to rest, and your poverty will come like a bandit”. Notice that poverty is personalised, and it comes like Fulani herdsmen.
Being poor, most times, is the attitude of Passing Over Opportunities Regularly.
I had an opportunity to make a new customer, and I was not going to miss it for any reason.
Most young people don’t have this push; they get easily tired and frustrated. They give up too easily. They lack push, and are used to the delusional prosperity messages without responsibility.
A young man sent me a message and booked an appointment with me. He never showed up. He did not even call me. He rudely sent me a message that he will get back to me. God forbid evil! It is not my portion to wait for unserious people. “Back to sender”, according to Nigerian prayer warriors.
Make sure you keep to time. I was scared that other people might get to her before me. I don’t know her capacity, and I don’t want her to tell me that she had spent her money on something else.
P4 Persistence of Faith
About five kilometres from the place, the woman called to determine my current location. Immediately I answered her, her phone went off. I tried calling her, and her phone was switched off. Remember, I hear voices. One voice said that she was angry or discouraged because I delayed. But I encouraged myself that if I don’t see her, I will sell to others. Another voice said that her battery is down, and that she probably could not charge it properly.
But I kept praying and pushing towards the mark of my new market.
I hardly drive through the centre of Warri between Jakpa Junction to the Central Garage because of traffic and touts. But I had to pass through the traffic towards our breakthrough. I was worried about parking space, but we kept going. There was no option than to make this first sale. Discouragement was not an option.
P5 Planning and Replanning
Have a plan, but be ready to ditch that plan for plan B, based on the situations you encounter.
There was so much traffic and no parking space. I came out of the car and started asking after her. She created space for our car, and I walked briskly back to my driver and directed him to where to park.
My wife and my son had rebagged the cucumbers into 5 sacks and there was half-a-sack left. I told my driver to take it along; it is the bait I will use to sell the other five. We got there, and she inspected the sacks, complained about the species, and showed me the green species I mentioned earlier on. I had prepared my mind not to allow her turn the contents of the sacks out.
I told her I was in a hurry and wanted to replace any ones she did not like from that half sack. She agreed to my suggestion. She wanted to waste my time and put me under pressure, but I gave her a bait and she was also under pressure.
When you are new in the business, you must be patient and take some rubbish.
Forget whether you are Dr. Apoki Charles, forget that you are popular; this is cucumber market, and I had to learn from the principalities of the market.
She showed me the species she wanted and all the other stuff. I was waiting for my money. I allowed her to finish talking with a young man of northern extraction, and then I told her to pay the driver.
This is the language of young Nigerians. I wore a traditional African dress, wore a fine hat, wore black shoes, and looked older than my age so that she won’t mess up with me.
In fact, when she saw me she called me Papa, even though I know we are agemates. I introduced myself as a medical doctor and pastor, and owner of a big school in Ughelli. I knew what I was doing.
When animals meet each other in the bush, they display their colours during courtship.
P9 Profiting Both Ways
I gave a good price, gave her the extra half-bag, so that she could make extra profit, and would love to buy from me again.
I secured a deal, made a new customer in a big market, and she will be happy with me too.
Don’t rip off your new customer; you will need their recommendation.
P10 Personal Touch
I could have sent my son with the driver, but they don’t know the market. That break in communication would have confused them. The woman would have underrated them and the telephone conversation would have been very irritating.
I asked for her church, and I happened to have preached there. I told her that her Bishop and I were awarded an honorary Doctor of Theology the same day. You know what I mean—big boy selling cucumbers.
I came home happy and I’m already preparing to plant very soon.
God Bless You.