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How I made $264,998 at 26 y.o in 2021 living in a 3rd World African Country

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Nodus

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Apr 3, 2018
15
90
27
Tanzania
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
 
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100k

Gold Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Oct 20, 2012
1,473
2,159
Congratulation on your success.

If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else?

Great bit of advice.

I don't totally agree with this part though;

As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....

The government can ALWAYS change laws, require licenses, implement new taxes etc. in ANY industry & sector - including the one you're in. ESPECIALLY when you're dealing with a corrupt government.

But yeah, in general you do want to control as many variables as possible. And be the one to "lobby" the government to erect barriers to entry such as association membership with high annual dues and lots of expensive regulations that one has to comply with.

I'll see you around, have a good x-mas & great 2022.
 

Nodus

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Apr 3, 2018
15
90
27
Tanzania
Congratulation on your success.



Great bit of advice.

I don't totally agree with this part though;



The government can ALWAYS change laws, require licenses, implement new taxes etc. in ANY industry & sector - including the one you're in. ESPECIALLY when you're dealing with a corrupt government.

But yeah, in general you do want to control as many variables as possible. And be the one to "lobby" the government to erect barriers to entry such as association membership with high annual dues and lots of expensive regulations that one has to comply with.

I'll see you around, have a good x-mas & great 2022.
Thanks, you too.

On the other issue, the mobile money services are wholly owned by network operators that set the commissions, they lower commissions and have done so before at their will. The tariff thing was just the last nail on the coffin as it raised the transaction charges to almost double. Now why put your livelihood at the hands of a faceless corporation who can decide to half your pay at a moments notice?
 

100k

Gold Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Oct 20, 2012
1,473
2,159
Thanks, you too.

On the other issue, the mobile money services are wholly owned by network operators that set the commissions, they lower commissions and have done so before at their will. The tariff thing was just the last nail on the coffin as it raised the transaction charges to almost double. Now why put your livelihood at the hands of a faceless corporation who can decide to half your pay at a moments notice?
Oooof. When you put it that way. Yeah, stay away from latching on to another company like that. Its basically like affiliate marketing ... oh boy did I waste time with that shit :( Years I'll never get back. Here I am 10 years later and I have nothing to show for it but experience.

No short cuts boys and girls, BUILD A BUSINESS that provides value and meets the CENTS commandments.
 
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Ing

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FASTLANE INSIDER
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Thanks for sharing your story!
 
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Mhesh

Contributor
Sep 11, 2021
35
23
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
@Nodus
Congratulations keep solving the problems and change Africa.
 

MJ DeMarco

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Holy shit, how did I miss this? Congrats, marked GOLD.

To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.

This is the most poignant statement in the post... welcome to the Fastlane my friend.
 
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p31

Contributor
Read Unscripted!
Jun 2, 2016
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Wow this is amazing and thank you for sharing your experience.

Is your business revolving around Healthcare? Asking because I kind of went through a similar awakening.

My awakening involved looking at and working with very unstable medical software while in my 4th year medical school in a US-type medical school, rounding like an intern. Because I had software programmer background, I decided to graduate, and then return to software engineering until I have enough experience to build software for healthcare industry. Fast forward 6 years and now I think I have enough project management/software programming skillset with enough exposure on the tech side of things.

However my main problem is that I don't have capital nor the insight into actually approaching customers.

My question I had when reading your post is how you transitioned from a "consumer/salaried" point of view as a medical doctor, to the business side of healthcare. As an intern I doubt you had industrial contacts, and if your business involves around healthcare equipment, I was wondering how you set your foot in the door to start out, inserting your business in the heavily regulated healthcare industry.

I want to build an EMR that can make life easier for patients and providers, but in the US it's not something that I as an individual/small-scale software consulting shop can do, which is why currently I joined a startup building one. But I think I'm still not seeing things in the CENTS way, but a salaried, slowlane view on things.

Thanks!
 

drkenny

New Contributor
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Sep 2, 2021
6
4
Great post - and congratulations! As a medical doctor myself, I can see how hard it is to leave the gravitational pull of practicing clinical medicine.
You have demonstrated a ton of courage, grit, hard work, and I'm thrilled for you that you're doing it -and for all of the people and system that your work will help. Keep it up!
 
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Stevekins

New Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Sep 15, 2019
9
8
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
Congratulations on your success!
 

MveloWins

New Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Nov 19, 2013
6
5
36
South Africa
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
So grateful for this post Nodus. You are such an inspiration and deserve all the great things coming your way. A great reminder for me, who is based in Africa, that big problems surround us and providing solutions to these problems brings value and the money will follow the magnitude of that value. Makes perfect CENTS.
 

matduans

New Contributor
Dec 30, 2021
10
3
malaysia
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
i'll turn 21 tomorrow & new in here. i
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
 
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Nodus

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Apr 3, 2018
15
90
27
Tanzania
However my main problem is that I don't have capital nor the insight into actually approaching customers.

My question I had when reading your post is how you transitioned from a "consumer/salaried" point of view as a medical doctor, to the business side of healthcare. As an intern I doubt you had industrial contacts, and if your business involves around healthcare equipment, I was wondering how you set your foot in the door to start out, inserting your business in the heavily regulated healthcare industry.
Capital is a problem when establishing a CENTS based business. Since our business can be both B2B and B2C unlike software, I started out with a few items which were highly in NEED either due to being overpriced or simply unavailable and on top of that they are highly regulated so we had to find ways around that for even a single device (device registration alone costs around $2500 upfront and 6 months, manufacturer physical inspection and approval can take a whole year) and jump start from there.

For most people capital will be tight in the beginning hence focus on a single product line that can easily double your investment rather than spreading it around.

I am sure things are different from where you are from but here patients can be asked to buy medication or equipment from outside the hospitals if unavailable, so we started out with small nearby outlets who purchased from us and sold to the patients before we started selling directly to institutions.

I was wondering how you set your foot in the door to start out, inserting your business in the heavily regulated healthcare industry.

On the second question, you have colleague whom you studied with for those 4 years on which are at different levels now who you can approach, from specialists, residents etc. who have moved on with there own practices and might still have contacts with. Don't be too concerned about "how they will feel about you not practicing" and challenge the mental blocks that make you hesitate, if you think its good for them and your business, then do it.

If your software can cut down the number of hours they spend charting everyday by half and you give them a demo, they might connect you to the decision makers and you get your first client, from there use the first client as a reference and snowball from there.

I wish you all the best in your pursuit.
 

Nodus

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Apr 3, 2018
15
90
27
Tanzania
Great post - and congratulations! As a medical doctor myself, I can see how hard it is to leave the gravitational pull of practicing clinical medicine.
You have demonstrated a ton of courage, grit, hard work, and I'm thrilled for you that you're doing it -and for all of the people and system that your work will help. Keep it up!
Thanks.

Its tough to leave the medical field, the sunken costs fallacy reigns deep here. I had several other "push" factors that made me take the leap, and take extra measures such as not renewing my practicing license so as not to run for the hills when the road seems to scary
 
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Khalfan

New Contributor
Sep 2, 2020
7
2
Tanzania
Congratulation on your success.



Great bit of advice.

I don't totally agree with this part though;



The government can ALWAYS change laws, require licenses, implement new taxes etc. in ANY industry & sector - including the one you're in. ESPECIALLY when you're dealing with a corrupt government.

But yeah, in general you do want to control as many variables as possible. And be the one to "lobby" the government to erect barriers to entry such as association membership with high annual dues and lots of expensive regulations that one has to comply with.

I'll see you around, have a good x-mas & great

Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
My fellow brother...first and foremost CONGRATULATIONS!!. I feel how difficult it was breaking through.I feel like I know you Because your story resonates with me so much..I am also a TANZANIAN...( Strictly believe ur one also) am still figuring my way to CENTS..Reading this has inspired me a lot that for the first time I have read something from fellow country man who is living it .If don't mind brother I would greatly appreciate and will be very thankfull if you consider contact me through e mail mxcmile@gmail.com. I would love to communicate to you personally brother. currently Am student in Mzumbe University.
CONGRATULATIONS brother
 

nkwukachiedu

New Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Sep 16, 2019
5
10
Asaba, Nigeria
Congratulations on your journey thus far. It's a poignant reminder of how tough it can be when you want to join the fastlane but the rewards would be worth it. I also live in an African country (Nigerian) so I know how life is here but we move as always despite the odds...
 

SEGA SAPH

New Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Dec 17, 2021
21
14
Russia
Well, I am not one to post or talk unless I have something important to say but I am writing this hoping to give a few tips to those of us starting out.



NB: For those who may appalled by calling it a "3rd world country" rather than a "developing country" while you may simply comment about one, I was born and live in one, so reserve the politically correct grammar for another place and time



This is going to be a long post so get comfortable.



Brief Introduction.

Born in a family of what you may call "modest" means in a working-class family - meaning there was food on the table, a comfortable place to sleep and even attended an English-speaking primary school (tuition fees was about $300/year at the time).

Started school relatively early, was a relatively high performing student since the beginning, graduated with Top grades - went to a Public "Special" Secondary school for 4 years, then got a full scholarship to a high school mostly attended by kids from wealthy families, politicians etc,

Went into Medical school for 5 years graduated with an M.D then Completed Medical Internship 1 year ago to become a fully Registered Doctor of Medicine then quit.......



The truth was - even as a child, I could sense something was not quite right

For a start, our family specifically my mother was always in debt. I remember multiple times our furniture being confiscated by the bank for defaulting on loans. Hiding in a room with my mother waiting for a debt collector from a personal loan to leave after telling him she wasn't home, frequent fights

between my parents about money and all that may be needed to leave a permanent imprint on a child's brain for life.



I wished for 3 things as a child.

1) Get as far from home as possible

2) Get my mother - a Secondary school teacher in a government school, out of debt

3) Not to live my life worrying about money



The first one happened relatively early, after being selected to join a public boarding "Special" Secondary school for the "Talented" I got my ticket out of home. Away from the constant reminder that opposite from anyone on the outside could observe, we were broke. Government employees like my mother were being

coerced to get into debt with criminally high interest rates (Usually 25% - 35%) for stupid reasons such as home upgrades, "entrepreneurial" ventures which were simply get rich quick schemes and the frequent desire to show off by repainting the house or changing the furniture.



When I got into Secondary school (O level education), I had my first encounter with an entrepreneurly themed book - Rich Dad, Poor Dad, it gave me a blurry peek at how one can create wealth and why a job can keep you poor, but the path was still unclear and phased it out slowly returning to routine.

after 4 years of secondary education, I got a scholarship to attend a well-known High school (A levels) known for being a top tier boarding school for rich kids. Kids who lived in mansions and always brought to school with expensive cars, had the newest Phone models (though students were prohibited from having cell phones inside the school) a world of difference.



By this time my sights were set to becoming a doctor. I remember once browsing for "highest paid doctors from different specialties" then I realized that very few even in countries like the US even crossed the $1m threshold, which led me to ask then where do all these rich people get their money from? How does one become a multimillionaire or billionaire while no one pays salaries that high? Then it hit me, if I really wanted to make it big then there was some thing else needed.

The advantage of studying in a school with the rich kids was that though most of them adopted a consumerism mindset, a select few of them had some inklings of ideas on how to make money and made a couple of friends that often-discussed different business ideas - mostly regurgitated what other people "thought" would make money with no ideas about how to bring value and most of all, no one had the will to execute anything. Their lives were far to comfortable to attempt the endeavors.





When I started medical school, I received a grant for the tuition fee and a student loan to cover other expenses. Although student loans are not the criminally high figures as compared to the US (my total student loan was about $6500 for the 5 years of medical school), they had a high interest rate, which was cleverly named "Value retention fee" of 15% which thankfully the government stopped implementing this year. I saved up most of the money, lived extremely frugally and used the money (about three hundred dollars every 3 months) - saved about $200 then used

that to try out my business ideas - most which were regurgitated from the populous and as a result - I LOST EVERYTHING.

Most common ventures like farming are romanticized that plant X number of (trees, watermelons, etc) here and after Y months you get 10X, EASY!! What they don't include is that the returns are bogus, the weather is uncertain, a lot of variables you have no control of - theft, insects .. and if you are lucky to actually harvest and bring the items to market, then guess what a million other people just did the same and selling at 10X Cheaper price.



By the third year of medical school - I learnt a few things and started getting into importing random items just taking guesses on what would make money. Again faced the same problems. I was forcing the market to react on my whims and not listening to what was needed. made small amounts of money but nothing significant.



Then I stumbled into The Millionaire Fastlane ........



It hit me like a tonne of bricks, I then knew why the businesses were failing and why me-too products weren't the answer. All business violated the CENTS (CENTS at the time) Commandments. I finally had the missing piece but there was one big problem, I was BROKE......




Building a business based on CENTS takes time AND Money. So to start out I had to continue doing some odd jobs, selling flash drives at the University, saving money. Just so I can invest in something I saw a genuine problem in and was actively already involved in - HealthCare.

Not just anything in healthcare. I went into and delved into details, participated and learned every detail of some of the most complex procedures and surgeries from Interventional Cardiology, Plastic Surgery to Neurosurgery. I already had a knack for studying so I took it further. I didn't only study diseases and the procedures, wanted to know how each piece of complex equipment and medication (which most people have no idea of - Commandment of Entry) operated. Just an example - Most people know ventilators but I frequented the ICUs to learn not just how to operate them but learn from the biomedical engineers on what parts broke most often, whether they were replaceable, was it expensive? Unavailable?

How can this PROBLEM be solved? What is a better way to prevent it? So, while most people think of selling wheelchairs and blood pressure monitors and painkillers, I focus on (just an example) - Biliary Stents, Pace Makers & IV Immunoglobulins and the like which are highly regulated and are a major headache and can take up to a whole year just to get the permits to a single device.



By changing my way of thinking I saw that the 3rd world is full of problems in each and every sector, which when solved could provide a lot of value and a result make people extremely rich on the process and in my case, save a lot of lives.



I started on this path diligently but ultimately realized one thing, that in order to pursue this, I will have quit practising medicine just after I began.



This wasn't an easy decision. I was one of the top students and received lots of praise during presentations, ward rounds and clinical acumen, most of my colleagues believed I would go ino academia and become a Professor or a Super specialist of some kind, but I told them before hand that once I was done with this, It was over for me.

There are many problems with the healthcare system in my country and me deciding to continue practice, would make no difference in the long run. I would just be another cog in the worn out system. If I was to provide significant value and run this business profitably then I would have to act from outside the system.



After graduating medical school , I started medical Internship (which is a mandatory 1 year practice in a major hospital) on which you get paid 80% of a General Practitioners baseline salary.



To put things in perspective a General Practitioner in the country is paid $650 per month - Gross Salary - After taxes and Social Security and student loans repayment that amount dwindles to about a whopping $380!!!!! hence most doctors are knee deep in debt even specialists with years of experience NEVER cross $2000 per month, but they may reach that after adding other allowances and if they have other side practices.

A medical intern gets paid an allowance 80% of the $650 about $520 but since its not taxed it becomes higher than a Fully Registered Government GP.

There is a lot to this story, but sacrifices had to be made. I had to live in a rat-infested tiny bedroom - (which my mother hated & protested) with no direct sunlight with my wife (who I met and married in medical school - but that's a story for another time) just to keep costs down to pour everything I had into the business. Meanwhile my fellow doctors were living it up large (as $520 is still a huge amount in this part of the world). Slowly things began to take shape.

By the end of 2020 I had about $5000 in cash and the rest invested into the business. That growth rapidly accelerated and as of yesterday the total revenue was about $264,998 with about 40% profit which has already been reinvested to grow the business. Currently I have 2 full time employees and outsource the rest of the minutiae.



To put this in perspective this amount (assuming a constant salary of $500 saving 100% of it) would have taken me 44 years to save up.



Honestly, I am a bit embarrassed by the result. I really thought I'd hit the $1m mark by the end of the year, but I slacked a lot and became lazy during the year and got too comfortable.



If you missed all the above points just take this: STICK to CENTS!! If you are in any part of the world even in Africa, we are rich in problems,

Water, HealthCare, Infrastructure etc.. Stick to the NEEDS, Avoid me too businesses with low Entry Barriers. If you live in an area with poor water supply, why are you hellbent on trying to start a clothing shop like everyone else? Make sure you control the variables of your business - As an example, there were many self-employed people in the country with providing mobile money transaction services for mobile networks with commission payments. Then the government introduced new tariffs and just like that, hundreds of thousands of jobs GONE....



Put your mind to it, avoid living to impress everyone around you, lock into your targets and set sail...… There is no looking back
FAwesome post! Man like it!! You are a really kind person what shared it with us! Wish uou a best luck and prosperity!

Can i ask you? How much money did you need for ger it started?
 

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