My challenge as an entrepreneur (61) – Fola Daniel Adelesi

I got thinking about the morality of getting paid sharing the knowledge I had acquired in the last few years and it became a serious issue for me because I also taught about not violating my conscience. Deep down inside of me there is a part that does not want to charge people who invite me to speak but another part of me keeps questioning how I was ever going to make a living or make the desired impact in life.

I told you about how I sold my mobile phone to make a speaking engagement and there are others where I borrowed money to make the speaking engagements. I was thinking about having a clear conscience. A conscience that wants to give back to the society but another thing, on a second thought that comes really hard on me is that I cannot give what I do not have. The one who gives back to the society is the one who has taken from the society but here is a young man whose feet is barely established in public speaking and is talking about giving back to the society.

There was one fact to face. I could talk for hours without getting tired and without sounding boring. I could talk and pretend I was tired in a way to make you ask for more of the talk but if was going to do free talks as a result of my passion I still needed to have enough in my pocket to spare to other people that I wanted to help. I grew up hearing stories about preachers and some other public speakers being very greedy and demanding outrageous amount of money when called upon to speak. I didn’t like that and I never wanted to be in that category of people that would place money ahead of using their gifts as a form of service to humanity.

As much as I wanted to help I realized I couldn’t because I didn’t have the money that will take the gifts to the places where they are needed. I was constantly broke and sometimes did not even have the motivation to gear myself up so talking about motivating other people was funny to me. I remember being asked to talk in an all night meeting of campus pastors and my subject was money. Here was I standing in front of the people speaking so intelligently about money and motivating others to act in the right direction but that night I had walked down to the venue of the meeting because I had no cash in my pocket. The morning after the meeting I still had to walk back home because the ovation I got after the speaking time did not translate into cash.

I couldn’t pretend for so long that I needed cash but was also doing what I was passionate about so something had to be done and it had to be done quickly if I was not going to be grounded. Over and over again the temptation of taking a job with another company tormented me. While thinking about the companies I could work with as a way to escape from the financial mess I kept remembering that I was a bunch of talent who would just walk into an organisation that has nothing to offer but a pay cheque while I was wasting away. I could not stand the thought of wasting away in another person’s business so I took the bold step to start by saying if you want me to speak in your meeting you will have to take care of my transport by paying a certain amount into my account. That way I stayed out of debt because I did not have to borrow the money I did not own because I want to help others.

About the author Fola Daniel Adelesi

Fola Daniel Adelesi is a professional public speaker who also trains other speakers. He's an highly engaging training facilitator and he holds his large audience spell bound when speaking at gatherings. He's an author, business consultant and highly skilled master of ceremony with excellent poise and diction. He was on the Debaters TV reality show season 1, he presented 'You Can' on Radio Continental in 2011 and he did motivational segments on Galaxy TV from Dec 2008 to August 2009. Fola Daniel has authored 3 books including Writing Business Proposals. He currently talks about Social Media on Info.com - An ICT Show on Lagos Television. Fola Daniel trained as a communications professional, works as a business consultant and was also trained at Lagos Business School in collaboration with Google as a Digital Business Manager. He presides over the following businesses: 1. Edible Pen Ventures ~ a total event package company. 2. Edible Pen Media & Publishing ~ For regular and new media businesses plus professional book publishing. 3. Edible Pen Training & Development ~ Management trainings and consulting for organisations and individuals.

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