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Babatunde Raimi… towards self fulfilment, beyond salary

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Beyond Salary: Towards Self Actualisation and Fulfilment is the title of the book under review. It is a primer on self-employment. In it, the author, a well-mentored and prolific writer, Babatunde Raimi, changed the African traditional perception of the people, most of whom are fixated on trading their certificates and wasting their productive lives on salaried jobs. They are baited by pensions, which nowadays, are often stolen by pension fund administrators with retired employees going hungry in the evening of their days. The book challenges you to actualise your gifts by finding self-fulfilment in entrepreneurship.

It was first published in 2018 by Lulu Press, Morrisville, North Carolina, USA. It has 182 pages, 10 chapters, a foreword, an introduction and a postscript where feedback from Raimi’s previous books was discussed.

While it lasts, salary enslaves your time, mind and hands and blinds you to opportunities and the freedom in striking out on your own. Sadly, ignorance still chains you to salary in the face of other factors as job security is increasingly threatened, coupled with delayed or stolen terminal benefits.

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Beyond Salary empowers and equips you with correct information you need to pursue a purpose-driven life. I recommend it to those seeking liberation from the slavery of salary, and taking bold steps away propelled by creativity, inventiveness followed by the satisfaction that comes from self-actualisation and self-fulfilment.

The alarming rate of Nigeria’s under-employed and unemployed culminating in the EndSARS protest and destruction of infrastructure calls for drastic measures. Thus, in Beyond Salary… Raimi offers intellectual solutions to this unemployment plague. In his first book, Planning for Retirement, which I had the privilege of reviewing, he predicted the future like Nostradamus.

Here, he gives a message of hope and courage, having risen to become a multi- income earner across many different value chain investments and opportunities.

In this book, the author shares his experience as an entrepreneurial strategist and life coach. You will surely have an expected glorious future, when you start thinking Beyond Salary and act swiftly to manifest your full creativity potentials.

Raimi walks you through how to live beyond salary, discover your passion, generate investment and business ideas and live a life of self-actualisation and self fulfilment.

In the first quarter of the 10-chapter book, the trap of salary, why we need to work, and salary related challenges are discussed. While it is good to work, it is best to work to gain experience because, who you eventually become when you work, is much more important than the salary you earn.

If you are above the age of 36 years, you are already on your retirement stage. The law of diminishing returns is already on you. Retirement is a major issue with employees. By the Pension Reform Act of 2004, you can retire and access your retirement benefits from age 50, as a civil servant, or employee of a private concern. The mandatory retirement age is 60 for civil servants, 65 for academic and non- academic staff of universities and 70 years for professors. Today, Nigeria’s pension schedule has become a model for some West African countries such as, Ghana, Gambia, Cote d’Ivoire and the Republic of Benin.

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You need the information in this book to avoid retirement pitfalls. However, here are some investment layouts as a corollary to planning for retirement. You can maximise these either as an employee or entrepreneur.

One, Treasury Bills. These are short-term debt instruments issued by the Central Bank of any government as short term funding for the government. They can be sold for cash anytime. It carries no risk. They usually carry a 91-day duration by which time it matures.

Two, stocks; these are shares of companies sold at the stock market. Companies raise capital by issuing stocks and entitle the stock owners (shareholders). You can buy stocks directly from companies or buy them for the benefit of other companies.

Three, bonds. These are instruments of indebtedness from the bond issuer. It is a debt security certifying that the issuer owes the holder the amount written on it. The issuer is obliged to pay the debt with an agreed interest. By buying the bond you are giving the issuer a loan. Governments usually issue bonds. If you hold bond to maturity, you will get all principal and interest back. Which is why bonds are both lucrative and secure.

Four, Annuities. These are fixed sums of money paid to someone as agreed: yearly, twice a year, monthly or as may be desired by the annuitant for the rest of his life. There are two types of annuities: deferred and immediate.

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Deferred annuity is where your money is invested for a period of time until you are ready to start withdrawals, usually in retirement. You have only 35 years working as a civil servant. For your safety therefore, you start an annuity plan early. You will need more money at retirement than when you were working. Five, insurance ought to be an integral part of our lives. It is a back-up plan in the event of failures or accidents. Where two of your children enter university at the same time; with insurance you will be able to cope for their upkeep and college fees. Also, you can get tax rebates on your insurance accounts.

Six, fixed deposits. These are solely offered by banks, where the interest is usually paid at an agreed period, monthly, quarterly or yearly by the bank.

Finally, cooperatives. As an employee, you need to invest in the co-operative society of your company. It has helped many people to build houses they would never have built if they were saving in the bank or insurance company.

My next focus is review of chapters four, five and six. These chapters cover starting a business with an idea; entrepreneurship and provoking ideas. The growing rate of pension liabilities, defaults by the states and the Federal Government amounting to billions of naira are enough to provoke thinking beyond salary especially now that we spend more than a quarter of our lives in retirement. The widespread corruption that has be deviled Nigeria is traceable to poor pay and employee dissatisfaction leading people to divert public funds for personal use because they cannot survive with their eight to five jobs. A large percentage of politicians in Africa are in politics because there is free money there. Hence, they get there by hook or crook even if it requires human sacrifice.

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According to Wikipedia, in 2012 alone Nigeria lost N400 billion to corruption. “It is insecurity that allows many to steal, and a slow judicial system that allows them to continue these acts of terrorism against our collective wealth, as the number of convictions are still low compared to the amount that has been stolen.”

The road to entrepreneurship can be tumultuous, especially in a Nigeria riddled with high level corruption. However, in the long run the reward for visionary entrepreneurs, incurable optimists and persistent individuals is boundless. However, steps needed on the ladder of success, include but not limited to the following. You must desire knowledge and skills, plan consciously, set goals, keep wise company and be committed and focused. Mr Babatunde Raimi, the author is a prolific writer, poet, researcher and a visionary entrepreneur. Mentored by the famous American millionaire, Robert Kiyosaki and the Chinese business mogul, Jack Ma, Raimi mastered the art of solving economic, political and educational problems. He holds a B.Sc Ed from the University of Lagos; and the MBA in Marketing in view from the same institution. He is a member of the Association of African American Museums of the USA, Nigerian Institute of Training and Development; Teachers’ Registration Council of Nigeria, Association of Registered Insurance Agents of Nigeria, member, Association of Economists and Statisticians of Nigeria and a licensed Insurance agent. His vision is to raise a new generation of reformers through financial empowerment and correct application of knowledge.

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