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The word above on mere sighting, elicits thoughts of various degrees and questions of diverse degrees and inexplicable magnitude. For example, one would ask ‘’how can a mere machine learn’’?? Such questions would always come up because to most people, the sound of the word ‘’machine’’ reminds them of televisions, tricycles, aeroplanes etc. Of course they are not out rightly wrong but the truth is these machines were created from a source; and that source is the ‘’computer’’. Irrespective of our ideas of what a computer is or looks like, it is a whole system and it acts according to a given language and command that makes it to learn and ‘’execute’’.  Its learning process is actually termed or called ‘’artificial intelligence’’.

As stated above, it might seem wrong for such question to be asked as it was above, but the clear truth is the word ‘’machine learning ‘’ is formed from a joining of two words being ‘’machine’’ and ‘’learning’’  .  It is a part of artificial intelligence in the field of artificial intelligence which most times uses statistical methods to give computers the ability to learn.

DEFINITION OF MACHINE LEARNING

It is simply defined as an application of artificial intelligence (AI) that gives computer systems the ability to automatically learn and improve from experience without being explicitly programmed. It centres on development of computer programs that can access data and use it to learn for themselves.

 

MACHINE LEARNING IN LAYMANS TERMS

In layman terms we’ll explain machine learning thus; Consider you are trying to toss a paper to a dustbin.

After the first attempt you realise that you have put too much force in it. After second attempt you realise you are closer to target but you need to increase your throw angle. What is happening here is basically after every throw we are learning something and improving the end result? We are programmed to learn from our experience.

We can do something similar with machines too. We can program a machine to learn from every attempts/experiences/data-points and then improve the outcome.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI)

This is simply the use of robots to replace what humans can do. It can be described as intelligence displayed by machines in contrast to the intelligence displayed by humans and animals. Artificial intelligence can be described as the theory and development of computer systems which are able to perform tasks that require human intelligence such as visual perception, speech recognition etc.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE VS MACHINE LEARNING

When the topic is big data, analytics or a broader wave of technological change sweeping through the world, the buzzwords are always Artificial intelligence and machine learning. One might even be tempted to think  they are the same but on the contrary, there is a basic contrast between these two and they are stated below;

  • Artificial Intelligence is the broader concept of machines being able to carry out tasks in a way that we would consider “smart” ‘’WHILE’’ Machine Learning is a current application of AI based around the idea that we should really just be able to give machines access to data and let them learn for themselves.
  • Machine Learning is the vehicle which is driving AI development forward.
  • Machine learning is simply a way of achieving AI.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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One cannot but think of a bible passage that is so apt when it comes to financial intelligence, prudence and management as this one ‘’ train up a child in the way he should go, so that when he grows up he will not depart from it’’ (proverbs 22:6). One of the major headaches encountered by most parents and fathers in particular is the challenge of setting your child on the path of financial independence and intelligence. When children are born, they are born devoid of financial knowledge and intelligence, it is the duty of the parent, particularly the father to guide these children along this path and make them to learn, not forcefully though this great life saving action.

In the words of the famous financial expert and Author, Robert Kiyosaki ‘’ financial freedom is a mental, emotional and educational process’’ , this means that both parents and particularly the father must be sound mentally, emotionally and educationally in order to pass this knowledge on to their kids. For as the saying goes, ‘’a man cannot give what he does not have’’. The task in itself is an arduous one that involves a whole lot of ‘’long suffering’’ which as they say is the older brother to ‘’patience’’.

We have taken our time to draw up some useful tips on how to ensure that the aim of financial growth and intelligence for your growing child is achieved. These tips are outlined below;

  • MAKE THEM EARN MONEY: When kids are made to earn money, they learn the importance of working to get whatever fund that comes to them. This can be achieved by assigning chores around the house so they can associate task completion with wages earned.
  • OPEN A BANK ACCOUNT FOR THEM : opening an account isn’t the main motive here but getting them to try to save using a bank by teaching the importance of saving through opening an interest-bearing savings bank account where they can deposit money they’ve earned.
  • GET THEM TO LEARN THE IMPORTANCE OF PATIENCE: When a child is waiting in line to say play some games or have fun, discuss with them, how important it is to wait.
  • TEACH THEM TO ENJOY GAMES: Get them to Play financially focused games, such as Monopoly, Game of Life, and Sims that involve making important and strategic decisions. Playing games can be a great way to explain the concept of risk and reward, which can lead to conversations about the stock market.
  • CREATE THREE JARS : Create three jars each labelled “Saving,” “Spending” or “Sharing.” Every time your child receives money, whether for doing chores or from a birthday, divides the money equally among the jars. Have him or her use the spending jar for small purchases, like candy or stickers. Money in the sharing jar can go to someone you know who needs it or be used to donate to a friend’s cause. The saving jar should be for more expensive items.
  • GET THEM TO SET SOME GOALS: Have your child set a goal, such as to buy a toy. Make sure it’s not so pricey that they won’t be able to afford it for months. “Then it just gets frustrating, and it gets hard for them to wrap their head around.
  • SET A GOOD EXAMPLE : Share your personal strengths , such as frugal shopping, meeting your family goals, or meeting your family’s saving goals, show them the reward of saving or buying a family car for a vacation.

 

 

 

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ABOUT QUANTUM COMPUTING

Modern day or classical computers have done so much; I mean quite a whole lot of amazing things, from the internet to the social media to applications to programs and software development, mobile phones etc.  But there are things that it still can’t solve yet. Optimization is one of them,  it simply talks about finding the best possible solution out of a million solutions, that would make it more accurate right? Talk about a whole lot of precision and accuracy.. Another issue that needs solutions is chemistry for large molecules with large chains, there should be a way of capturing each bit of a chain without obstructing the structure.. These two issues and some others have a couple of things in common and these are

 (1) The power of exponentials

 (2) Superposition and

(3) Entanglement.

All of these can only be defeated by the use of ‘’QUANTUM COMPUTING….’’

Quantum computing is the area of study focused on developing computer technology based on the principles of quantum theory, which explains the nature and behaviour of energy and matter on the quantum (atomic and subatomic) level.

It is quite different from binary digital electronic computers, which operate based on transistors.  Classical computers encode information in bits and bits can take either 0 or 1.. Quantum computers encode in qubits, and qubits are operate based on two principles namely superposition and enlargement.

QUANTUM COMPUTING IN LAY MANS TERMS

Quantum computing is the process used to build a quantum computer.  A quantum computer is a model of how to build a computer. Quantum computers use certain phenomena from quantum physics to operate. These phenomena include superposition and entanglement.  In quantum computing, a very small number of operations are carried out using qubits (quantum bit).

QUANTUM MECHANICS

This is a branch of physics and mechanics that deals with the mathematical description of the motion and interaction of subatomic particles, incorporating the concepts of quantization of energy, wave-particle duality, the uncertainty principle and the correspondence principle in quantum physics..

WHY QUANTUM COMPUTING IS DIFFERENT

Quantum computing is far different from classical computing by modern classical computers because of the following reasons;

  • Superposition : Classical positioning is basically binary i.e in zeros and ones but quantum  computing can do more than that because they operate in qubits. It can solve even complex superposition of 2 states..
  • Entanglement: The states of entangled qubits can be easily explained through the use of quantum computing.
  • Quantum algorithms : Quantum computing has helped to solve typical optimization state problems. It also helps to encode the problems into a quantum computer. It has even helped to create noise that’s out of phase.
  • Quantum computing has also helped to control air rates by moving to lower air rates and higher qubits count..

 

 

 

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This is the action or process of making a physical object from a three-dimensional digital model, typically by laying down many thin layers in succession. 3D printing is any of various printing processes in which material is joined or solidified under computer control to produce or create a three – dimensional object with materials like liquid molecules and powdered grains fused together. It is an additive manufacturing process that creates a physical object from a digital design used for rapid prototyping and additive manufacturing. All 3D printing technologies and materials operate under one and the same principle being; a digital model is turned into a solid three-dimensional physical object by adding material layer by layer.

3D printing is an obviously rapidly developing technology that is fast gaining ground in firms outside Africa and which should be adopted in Africa.

THE 3D PRINTING PROCESSES

3D printing or additive manufacturing is a process of making three dimensional solid objects from a digital file. The creation of a 3D printed object is achieved using additive processes. There are different processes, equipments and materials used in the synthesis of a three dimensional object. The few main differences among these processes lie in the technologies and the materials used to achieve the process.

The various processes include:

  • Light Polymerization
  • Extrusion
  • Continuous liquid interface production
  • Powder bed

HOW IT WORKS

Every 3D print starts as a digital 3D design file – like a blueprint – for a physical object. Trying to print without a design file is like trying to print a document on a sheet of paper without a text file. This design file is sliced into thin layers which are then sent to the 3D printer.

From here on the printing process varies by technology, starting from desktop printers that melt a plastic material and lay it down onto a print platform to large industrial machines that use a laser to selectively melt metal powder at high temperatures. The printing can take hours to complete depending on the size, and the printed objects are often post-processed to reach the desired finish.

Available materials also vary by printer type, ranging from plastics to rubber, sandstone, metals and alloys – with more and more materials appearing on the market every year.

 

https://www.3dhubs.com/what-is-3d-printing

 

 

 

PROS OF 3D PRINTING

 

As a fast growing technology which is seriously gaining ground all over the country, there are advantages to be gained from 3D printing, these are;

  • It is used to customize any and every item
  • It is used to create complex designs
  • There are no need for tools and moulds
  • It has a lower cost
  • It has high speed and ease of prototyping
  • It is faster and less risky to route to the market

 

CONS OF 3D PRINTING

The disadvantages of 3D printing include;

  • It has lower precision
  • It has less material choices and colour finishes
  • It has limited strength and endurance
  • It has higher cost for large production runs

 

 

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As kids, back in the day, we had different orientations concerning savings from our parents that helped to serve as the foundation for our financial beliefs as kids and subsequently as adults. We had parents that would advice their children to always spend every penny on sweets, biscuits and the likes; such a child would grow up to become a spendthrift, we also had those who would advice their children to keep a part of the money that they get from relatives, family friends, relations etc. and then after some time, they’ll go back and either request for that same amount of money or take It from the kids forcefully, this practice is even much worse than the other as the child would grow to become very stingy and would believe that the parents and everyone in particular wants nothing but their money which sure is a dangerous way to go.  We have a set of parents that would encourage the kids to keep a part of every penny that comes to them at all cost introducing them to Saving things like the local safe also known as ’kolo’’ or ’piggy bank’’ today and other measures that would help the idea to be nurtured.

With the present state of the economy today in Nigeria, Africa and in the world, the above stated measure of keeping a part of every penny is a welcome development. It is called ‘’SAVING FOR THE RAINY DAY’’

WHAT IS SAVING??

This is simply an amount of money or anything that is not spent or used for immediate consumption. When it involves money, it is called saving money , when it involves time , its called saving time etc. Most times when the word Savings is uttered , our mind readily jumps to ‘’MONEY’’ , it does not readily refer to money alone as other things like time , materials etc can also be saved. This write up though will focus on saving of money. Saving differs from savings. The former refers to the act of increasing one’s assets, whereas the latter refers to one part of one’s assets.

WHY DO PEOPLE SAVE??

Most people save because of the uncertainty of tomorrow or rather the future. When we save money, it creates a sense of financial security and helps to combat the future. Saving also provides ’’ a way out’’ or a ‘’safety net’’ in times of emergency.

BASIC REASONS FOR SAVING MONEY

Money should be saved for three basic reasons which are:

  • As an emergency fund
  • For purchases
  • As a retirement fund

 

 

      AS AN EMERGENCY FUND

Sometimes, as individuals, life throws some financial surprises to us, this is why we need to stash away some wads of money for emergency purposes. These wads are known as ‘’ emergency funds’’.

       FOR PURCHASES

One of the greatest enemies of saving is purchases, if not properly controlled, it can derail any budget. An increase in purchase results to increased expenditure and subsequently a deficit.  However, proper savings helps us to purchase and spend with ease, it reduces the stress on our individual budget.

    AS A RETIREMENT FUND

We can save in order to create a retirement fund. A retirement fund is a stash of funds set aside for life after paid employment, it basically takes care of our old age, when all the kids would have left for their individual families, savings helps to live out that stage of an individual’s life in peace, bliss and happiness.

THE SAVINGS POLICY

This is also known as ‘’ a savings plan’’ or an ‘’employee savings plan’’. It is a pooled investment account provided by an employer that allows employees to set aside a portion of their pre-tax wages for retirement savings or other long-term goals (i.e. paying for college tuition, purchasing a home).

It also helps firms to build up a culture of loyalty among employees. The savings policy isn’t reserved for firms alone, individuals can also have their personal savings policy.

There are a number of firms with a very strong individual or savings plan.

www.moneymatters.com.ng/mm-news-and-updates

 

 

 

 

                               

 

 

 

 

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News & Updates

This is a legal framework that sets guidelines regarding the collection and processing of the personal Data of individuals within the European Union (EU).  It is a regulation that requires businesses to protect the personal data and privacy of EU citizens for transactions that occur within EU states. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679 is designed to protect natural persons with regards to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data. It is the result of cries from firms, operations and individuals concerning the breach of their personal data and its unauthorized use in public domain. It also addresses the export of personal data outside the EU and European Economic Area (EEA).

The GDPR which is the result of the mutually agreed European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will come into force on the 25th of May 2018.

WHAT IS PERSONAL DATA

Legally, personal data refers to any information relating to an identified or identifiable individual.  An identifiable individual is someone who can be identified directly or indirectly in particular by reference to an identification or social security number or one or more factors specific to his physical, physiological, mental , economic, cultural or social identity like name, first name, date of birth, biometrics etc.

WHAT CONSTITUTES A BREACH OF DATA/DATA PROTECTION

This is a confirmed happening, incident or situation in which sensitive, confidential protected data has been accessed or disclosed without the required level of authorization.

A SUMMARY OF THE GENERAL DATA PROTECTION REGULATION (GDPR) FOR BUSINESSES

After years of painstaking research, consultation and implementation the GDPR is set to come into play for businesses at all level. Companies, firms and corporations are supposed to key into this legislation and ensure its implementation to the fullest. Its effective date for kick – off is the 25 th of May 2018. There are tougher fines and strict sanctions for firms who do not comply with this regulation.

Overview

The GDPR is built around two key principles and they are;

  1. Giving citizens and residents more control of their personal data
  2. Simplifying regulations for international businesses with a unifying regulation that stands across the European Union (EU)

 The GDPR will apply to any business established in the EU and may apply to companies based outside of the EU that process the personal data of EU citizens in certain circumstances.

SUMMARY OF THE GDPR AS IT CONCERNS BUSINESSES

The summary of the GDPR as it concerns businesses is outlined below;

  • Businesses whose activities involve ‘regular or systematic’ monitoring of data subjects on a large scale (in other words processing extensive personal information), or which involve processing large volumes of ‘special category data’ must employ a Data Protection Officer (DPO). Their role will be to ensure the company complies with the obligations under the GDPR. They’ll also be the contact for any data protection queries
  • The GDPR may apply to any business that processes the personal data of EU citizens, including those with fewer than 250 employees (contrary to common misunderstanding).

Serious breaches (that is, any breach which has an impact on the rights of data subjects) must be reported to the regulator (in the UK this is the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)). This should be within 24 hours where possible, but at least within 72 hours and the report must include information regarding what led to the breach, how it is being contained and planned next steps

  • Individuals will have more rights on how businesses use their data. In some instances, they have the ‘right to be forgotten’ if they no longer want you to process their personal data and you have no other legal grounds (for example the individual is no longer a customer so your contract with them no longer gives you a legal right) to keep the data.

GDPR CHECKLIST FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

  • Failure to comply will result in harsher penalties. Currently, the ICO can fine up to £500,000 but the GDPR will allow fines of up to €20 million or four per cent of annual turnover, whichever is higher.

Remember, your checklist needs to take into account past and present employees and suppliers as well as customers (and anyone else’s data you’re processing which includes collecting, recording, storing and using the personal data in any way).

  1. Know your data. You’ll need to demonstrate an understanding of the types of personal data (for example name, address, email, bank details, photos, IP addresses) and sensitive (or special category) data (for example health details or religious views) you hold, where they’re coming from, where they’re going and how you’re using that data.
  2. Identify whether you’re relying on consent to process personal data. If you are (for example, as part of your marketing), these activities will become more difficult under the GDPR because the consent needs to be clear, specific and explicit. For this reason, you should avoid relying on consent unless absolutely necessary.
  3. Look hard at your security measures and policies. You’ll need to update these to be GDPR-compliant, and if you don’t currently have any, get them in place. Broad use of encryption could be a good way to reduce the likelihood of a big penalty in the event of a breach.
  4. Prepare to meet access requests within a one-month timeframe. Subject Access Rights are changing, and under the GDPR, citizens have the right to access all of their personal data, rectify anything that’s inaccurate and object to processing in certain circumstances, or completely erase all of their personal data that you may hold. Each request carries a timeframe and deadline of one month (which can only be extended in mitigating circumstances), from the original date of request.
  5. Train your employees, and report a serious breach within 72 hours. Ensure your employees understand what constitutes a personal data breach and build processes to pick up any red flags. It’s also important that everybody involved in your business is aware of a need to report any mistakes to the DPO or the person or team responsible for data protection compliance, as this is the most common cause of a data breach.
  6. Conduct due-diligence on your supply chain. You should ensure that all suppliers and contractors are GDPR-compliant to avoid being impacted by any breaches and consequent penalties. You’ll also need to ensure you have the right contract terms in place with suppliers (which puts important obligations on them, such as the need to notify you). promptly if they have a data breach). See ‘How can I check my suppliers are GDPR-compliant?’ further down.
  7. Create fair processing notices. Under GDPR, you’re required to describe to individuals what you’re doing with their personal data. See ‘Fair processing notices’ below for more information.

https://www.simplybusiness.co.uk/knowledge/articles/2017/11/what-is-gdpr-for-small-business/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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All over the world, Muslim faithfuls are observing a period of great abstinence and holiness. It is a period when most faithfuls observe a high level of piety and holiness. A friend once told me that within these periods, they won’t allow themselves to be soiled by worldly profligacies. One would be tempted to ask ‘’what happens when the period is over’’ but that sure would be an answer for the ‘’gods’’ .

WHAT IS RAMADAN

The name ‘’Ramadan’’ is an Arabic name derived from the word ‘’ramad’’ meaning parchedness or scorchedness. It  refers to the ninth month of the Arabic calendar. The season of Ramadan is that season when muslim faithful observe their fasting.

Fasting is (obligatory) for adult Muslims, except those who are suffering from an illness, travelling, are elderly, pregnant, breastfeedingdiabeticchronically ill or menstruating.[10] Fasting the month of Ramadan was made obligatory during the month of Sha’ban, in the second year after the Muslims migrated from Mecca to MedinaFatwas have been issued declaring that Muslims who live in regions with a natural phenomenon such as the midnight sun or polar night should follow the timetable of Mecca, but the more commonly accepted opinion is that Muslims in those areas should follow the timetable of the closest country to them in which night can be distinguished from day.

When fasting, Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking, sexual relations etc. They keep away from all sinful behaviour that would reduce the effects of the fasting. They instead focus on activities that would improve their spirituality.

However, there are some few and literally unknown facts about the Ramadan that people really do not have any idea of: They include:

  • FASTING IS COMPULSORY WHEN YOU ATTAIN PUBERTY

In clear terms this simply means for any adult, as soon as the age of puberty is attained, fasting becomes obligatory but children can only fast if they wish . There are exemptions though and these include; the elderly, the sick, the pregnant, women with menstrual flow, breastfeeding mothers etc

 

  • TIMES FOR FASTING VARY ALL AROUND THE WORLD

Due to the differences in time zone, the various times for fasting vary greatly. This is because fasting is mostly done during the day time and In the daytime. For example in Iceland , there are 21 hours of daylight while in Austria there are just 16.

  • DURING THE RAMADAN SEASON MUSLIMS GIVE MORE

Do you want to get quite enough from that muslim friend of yours? All you have to do is wait for the Ramadan season. Muslims give more during the Ramadan season for this is one of the five pillars of Islam. Faithfuls give a lot more to charity during their period of fasting.

  • THERE ARE PENALTIES FOR BREAKING THE FAST IN SOME COUNTRIES

In some Muslim countries, breaking the fast in public is considered to be a crime which has a jail term attached as its penalty while in others; it is punishable with fines and community service.

  • DURING FASTING , MUSLIMS TRY TO REFRAIN FROM BAD BEHAVIOUR

Muslim faithful try as much as possible to refrain from bad behaviour during this season. They are also asked not to use swear words or derogatory words , all of these are done to ensure that they remain holy throughout this period.

  • THE ACT OF FASTING DURING RAMADAN IS KNOWN AS SAWM

Being one of the pillars of Islam, fasting is also known as ‘’SAWM’’  , other pillars of islam include faith, prayer, charity and at least one pilgrimage to Mecca in a lifetime.

 

 

 

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 Iya Tolu, our neighbour strolled into the compound looking tired, week and crest fallen. I asked her what the problem was and she looked at me, raised the polyethene bag in her right hand, opened her mouth and the sound that came out almost made me think she was crying. In reality, she actually sighed and sounded troubled and angry at the same time. What was her grouse? She was both angry and worried that the same amount of Money that she took to the market that bought her a huge amount of goods could only get her a handful this week.

 In spite of the nature of this analogy the character above would have possibly gotten the same amount of goods that she got the week before, if for each good, she had a pool of vendors with different prices to choose from, her plight was simply aided by Monopoly. One could argue in her favour that the vendors of these goods can be found at very far distances from each other too.

In Nigeria today, this is the sorry state of things, even with your money in your hands, it can hardly get anything satisfactory because the prices differ and are at the roof top. To an extent this situation can be helped by the use of a price comparison site for those who are internet compliant. One might even be tempted to create an offline price comparison site if possible..

WHAT IS A PRICE COMPARISON WEBSITE

It is a website that compares the price of a particular product or service in different stores or from different companies. It is a tool that helps users to find the best price, latest products and online shopping deals.

Outside Nigeria, it is a known way of life but here in Nigeria and Africa, it is slowly coming into play. With comparison websites, you can even do your shopping without stress because depending on the product or service offered, there might be a delivery service.

PROS OF A PRICE COMPARISON SITE

There’s a whole lot to gain from the use of a price comparison site. From experience, using them makes you feel like the ‘’VERY BIG BOY’’ as we would say. Find below the gains of using a price comparison site;

  • They save money;

Checking quotes from hundreds of vendors and firms and being able to sort by price enables customers to select the very cheapest option, based on the criteria specified. This means your eyes could be opened to a deal from a smaller company that saves you a significant amount of money.

  • They are Convenient and time-efficient ;

 With a few clicks of a finger you can get hundreds of quotes depending on your desired product or service with hardly any effort at all. This allows you to gather a large amount of condensed data, saving the time of trawling through dozens of individual websites. Comparison sites also allow you to create an account and save all your details to prevent you having to repeat them over and over again when looking for different policies or wanting to switch provider. Time is money after all and is extremely valuable, so saving as much as possible is a big attraction to these sites.

  • They create wide variety and choice ;

 Price comparison sites are big businesses, and there is no shortage of ones to choose from. All of the sites ask for slightly different information and don’t all have the same vendors on their books, meaning the list of quotes given won’t cover the same companies and thus provide differing quotes. This means several can be used alongside one another to find the best deals and to validate the accuracy of the figures quoted.

  • They make shopping at the comfort of your home easy;

Most price comparison sites come with payment options and delivery options. This means you can go through quotes, make your choice, pay and have your goods delivered in record time, all from the comfort of your home.

  • They can also be used as marketing tools for firms ;

For both the vendors on most comparison websites and other intending vendors, partnering with these sites creates an avenue for marketing due to the huge traffic of people.

 

  There is a whole lot more to be gained from the use and patronage of price comparison sites. The above stated are just a few of them…

Use a price comparison site today…

 

 

 

 

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Happy New year to you! Or is it really a happy one? Honestly, it is perfectly normal to feel some sense of dissatisfaction over how your 2016 went; maybe you’re looking for a new job (or just a job for that matter!), it could be you wanted your partner to pop the question and you’re still waiting, is it a regular gym habit you want to develop? Whatever it is, you can be rest assured that your past need not dictate your future prospects. You have so much more agency than you may realize and it’s Money Matter’s goal to help you tap into that. We contend that the first step is brutal self-honesty; put another way “short-term pain for long-term gain” and this will involve embracing culpability (where applicable) for any inability to achieve a particular goal thus far, or even for unfavorable occurrences in 2016. Ask yourself, “What could I have done to have avoided this experience?” “What lessons have I learned?” and, more crucially “what do I plan on changing to ensure a happier experience this time around?” confronting aspects of the past is not always easy; moreover it may even be painful and you may wish to respond with the popular adage “the past is better left to the past”. However, another adage that arguably counters this is “doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of madness”, taken another way, change is essential and believe it or not, your past is a highly valuable resource which should be tapped into as you move forward in 2017 and beyond; it serves as a vital reference point.

Once you’ve spent time ruminating on the above, you may wish to consider the following tips/questions:


Do you desire a job/career progress?
Moving forward, we urge you to set goals as to what you would like to achieve. If it’s a new job, ask yourself what you can do differently, whether that entails considering a different industry altogether, acquiring further qualifications, a more radical action like attending a hotel lounge or business centre to network with prospective employers, or even a more radical idea like considering a business opportunity.


Do you have financial concerns in general?
Maybe your finances are given you occasional anxiety and now’s as good an opportunity as any to evaluate the manner in which you manage your finances. Consider your present circumstances; are you paying substantial rent in a highbrow location? If so you should ask yourself if it is truly worth the possible anxiety and frugal living; perhaps you may want to ask whether keeping up appearances is worth more than a healthy state of mind. Ultimately, it comes down to a question of desire: is the pain of staying the same, greater than the pain of change? If the answer is yes, then this is a crucial step in achieving the kind of change you would like in your life.

Furthermore you may find that you’re fairly comfortable financially but you have future plans or an imminent life changing event such as planning a wedding or perhaps you’re a new parent and you want to make provisions to this effect: life insurance is a financial product which is designed to give you that piece of mind such that in the event of terminal illness or unexpected death, loved ones will have a nest egg. There also savings accounts and a number of financial products which can help to alleviate financial worries in this area.

Wishing to start a business in 2017?
This course of action has grown in popularity as a result of ‘entrepreneurism’ becoming more fashionable and also as a practical alternative to seeking employment due to the present labour market stagnation as an attendant effect of the recession. Whatever your imperatives are for pursuing a business, we sincerely wish you success and here are some tips/questions you may wish to consider:

What is your end goal?

Deep thinking isn’t always fun but outlining your end goal is crucial. This will determine whether you’re likely to benefit more modestly or whether you are the next Dangote or Otedola. Consider the industry you’re seeking to break into, what prospects are there at present? What evidence exists to substantiate this? It sounds like plenty of work and hopefully we still have your attention, but consider this thinking and strategising as you investing in yourself and your future; it goes without saying that some endeavours will yield a more modest return than others, but on the flip side, the more ambitious your goal is, the more risky it is likely to be and although this shouldn’t deter you from thinking and acting big, it should be noted that developing strong personal motivation and tunnel-vision will carry you beyond your expectations and closer to fulfilling your big goals.

Networking

This is an area you’re likely to be familiar with but it’s of significant importance. Sure you’ve heard the saying “your network is your net-worth” and this may seem clichéd but it nevertheless worth heeding. Peruse the internet and social networks for networking events to attend, prioritising those that are most likely to get you relevant contacts, set out goals that you may wish to achieve from attending the event(s) and evaluate your progress. Sustaining this habit will make you a prodigious networker and position you far more effectively in your journey towards success.

Capital/Funding

This tends to be the biggest bugbear as to why businesses don’t succeed or even transition from idea to reality. Depending on your circumstances, it is advisable to be very broad in your thinking; absolutely stretch the possibility frontiers in your mind and consider everything from moving back home with your parents, working a job that you’d otherwise not to save up capital, selling off items/possessions especially if they’re diminishing in value etc. Ultimately the responsibility lies with you as to what course of action(s) will take you to where you want to go, but being more creative and open-minded as to funding sources will not only draw you closer towards achieving success, but you’ll find challenging yourself in this manner a more rewarding and self-educational experience.

In summary, we contend that the start of a new year can herald the opportunity to begin anew in one or several areas; moreover, as time passes by, we urge you to consider the start of a new year as a mere pit-stop (think Formula 1/motor racing) rather than signifying a need for wholesale change. We hope we’ve covered your particular area(s) of interest, but if not please extract as much from the above as you can, especially as there is much transferable content which can be applied in many areas of life. We urge you to use the month of Jan for evaluation and recalibration as you pursue greater fulfillment in your life.

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