The shrill in his voice cut through my bone marrows like a chain saw as
he narrates his ordeal over the phone. He had just lost his younger
brother in an accident a month ago, his wife just gave birth, in
addition he caters for his other five siblings and a week after he was
fired by the organisation for which he has sacrificed nine years of his
life. Bugzy got fired last week; he could not even pick his personal
files from his PC.
This piece is not about Bugzy, it's about us, you and me. Let's pause
for a moment and put our selves in Bugzy's shoes, did I hear God forbid?
Yeah! Bugzy would have said that a week ago but reality has set in.
whether Bugzy was unfairly sacked is not what I want to discuss but what
have we to learn from it?
We work in the 21st century where technology is fast claiming good old
jobs, my dad used to be a cable expert at NITEL, he reveled at the
single fact that he's so good at the job, he was indispensable, but the
moment the idea of GSM was being mooted, he was such a smart man that he
resigned and started some other business but his colleagues stayed on
with expectation of the usual monthly pay perk, then came the big bang,
256 NITEL Technical staff sacked, my dad was still being paid his
pension after taking his gratuity. Technology we love so much is
becoming our competitor, organisations are fast automating their
processes, we are being replaced by machines, it's now a war of man vs.
machine but man is fast losing the battle due to that tacit support of
the capitalist machine.
Yes, the capitalist machine, that greedy behemoth, never satisfied with
little. Due to globalization, companies are spreading more than ever,
are consolidating more than ever and profits are rising more than ever
but jobs are lost more than ever. You may ask why, the reason is; they
have found alternatives and they are machines. Companies cut jobs at
every little provocation, losing ones job is as easy as a phone call or
an SMS, hurray technology! When organisations want to cut costs, they
don't sell computers and softwares, they sack people.
Like Bugzy, we have come to work today, to earn our pay, but are we
really sure we will be here when the salary will be paid? I am not
Nostradamus but I can give a little advice on how to live in this
perilous times. I may be sounding too negative but permit me to drive
home my points. Do we have the I-quit-money? Majority of us just spend
and spend till we drop dead, hoping to earn an unearned salary. We shop,
drink, party away, take loans to consume luxuries over income we are yet
to earn in the next three years. What if after this, we get sacked and
nothing is left in our accounts? We get frustrated and feel worthless.
Please, let's save and save and save and then invest, invest and invest
again but wisely, let's invest in landed properties, stocks, bonds;
invest long term and short term for we will fall back on them in the
rainy days. At least let's set about 30-40% of our income aside for
investment and savings so when it happens we can comfort our dependants
and keep their hopes alive instead of killing our dreams and theirs due
to our wrong choices.
A job should not deter us from having a plan B, one of the best ways to
make a plan B is to learn some very practical skills aside from what we
do at work, let's learn some skills. The truth is in some years from
now, people like Bugzy might be thankful to the organisation for sacking
them as they might become more successful by going into personal
businesses or doing something that will bring income far above what
their paid jobs offered. Can you sing? Try developing that skill, learn
to sew, learn hair dressing, make use of that ability to cook that
people have always praised you for, are you good at programming? Try
designing software, teach if you can, learn something, anything, it
could be your saving grace after you receive that call. These are
derided skills which wiser people have converted to cash. Talk about the
Mr Biggs, Nandos, Tiffany Ambers, Frank Oshodis, Tufaces, Bill Gates,
Steve Jobs of these world and you talk of people doing ordinary things
in special ways and making serious money.
For those that can still apply to study please
intensify efforts, it increases your market worth and you can call the
bluff of any employer when you need to
A word is enough for the wise, let's do these things so we can smile and
drop our letters with joy when we are called to do so. These things call
for serious discipline, what else differentiate success from failure if
not discipline and determination?
If you can't fly, run. If you can't run, walk, but please keep moving.
Don't sit in your comfort zone because there is nothing as such, it's an
Thank you and God bless you
A word is enough for the wise