“Jay Z of Jollof”
Passion and Entrepreneurship
“I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man!”
― Jay Z
My adopted little sister is Sarah Louise or “Lulu,” and she lives in Houston. We were chatting this morning about random topics as we usually do as her brain is always on fire. She can start talking about pure water then turn it into politics.
So, she went to a Beyonce concert yesterday night and somehow made a connection between it and something I wrote on Facebook this morning:
“I have come to realize that the only currency you need for wealth and prosperity is time. Since it is finite, maximize your productivity.
Some people work even when they play. That is why there should be no distinction between your “play” and “work.”
What I was describing was the definition of passion that should drive one’s pursuits and propel people into greatness. I met some young Nigerian developers yesterday at the Google Launchpad Build event yesterday who were doing it for the love of it.
A guy came to meet me to tell me about a product he was building for university students to rate everything about their experience at school.
I could see how passionate and driven he was about the product he was developing. He was not looking for money but thinking of building something great. I believe passion is not a goal, greatness is. Not just personal fame but awesome output. It is the product that makes people see the creator as great. Individuals who achieve this usually have fun while doing it. The lines between work and play do not exist.
This is in contrast to a small poll I did on Twitter last week:
People were honest.
Lulu asked how she would have made the Beyonce concert work as she enjoyed herself? She is a Beyonce “Fanatic,” not just a fan. We started analyzing the concert; then she said she could not understand how one person made a performance to 50,000 plus people make it so personal for each one of them. I said Aha!! That was it.
She paid $70 to attend the concert and was unhappy with herself that she didn’t pay more. She would have paid $1500 to be closer if she could afford it. Some people did and paid. The more expensive seats meant she’ll more than likely sit next to someone who wants to be there because they have followed her career for the past 20 years. Instead, she sat next to people who were not “real fans,” as they could not share the similar excitement.
To her, it was “almost a homecoming or a pilgrimage.” In her words:
“I made sure I got everything out of it. Not merely a spectator but a full participant. But I wonder how one can tap into that?
Her (Beyonce’s) father is a professor at my school perhaps I should go and discuss with him?”
I started to put the whole thing in the context of another product she loves so much , which is “food.” She really enjoys cooking. I asked her why she can’t be the next Beyonce of food?
To some people, Jamie Oliver is their Beyonce. For us tech people, Mark Zuckerberg is our Beyonce. Oo Nwoye used the exact words to describe Zuckerberg’s visit to Nigeria:
As for me, I want to be the “Jay Z of Jollof.” @JollofRepublic will be my Roc Nation.
I chased Lulu back to sleep. It was 4:38 am in Houston. In Lagos, I was getting ready to search for the money to build the foundations of the republic. Then I saw this tweet below!
Maybe JollofRepublic will be in the next YCombinator batch? It is like Uber but for Jollof…..