Sunday, 30 June 2013

500 African youths to benefit from new US Fellowship programme, says Obama

U.S President Barack Obama on Saturday in Johannesburg announced a new fellowship programme, which will initially take 500 young Africans to the U.S every year for academic and leadership training.  Obama, who is currently on a state visit to South Africa, said this at a Town Hall Meeting with a cross-section of African youths at the University of Johannesburg’s Soweto Campus, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.

Many graduates don’t have business skills — Accenture boss


Chief Executive Officer, Accenture Nigeria, Mr. Niyi Yusuf
Chief Executive Officer, Accenture Nigeria, Mr. Niyi Yusuf, talks about the Nigerian business environment and the economy. He spoke with ADEMOLA ALAWIYE
How will you describe doing business in Nigeria?
Doing business in Nigeria has been tough. Nigeria is a developing economy; we don’t have the infrastructure in place. I mean you look at the World Bank report on doing business, you will see where we are; the number of steps it takes to open a business and get access to credit. But because we are a developing nation, we know there are challenges to face. The greatest challenge we face is that of talent. There is a small pool of talents in Nigeria. We graduate people every year from the universities but those guys do not have the skills that are required in the business world.
Are you satisfied with the financial market?
No, we surely can do better. The regulators and operators know there are opportunities to do more. We need to bring in more people to the banking sector. If we have a population of 160 million people, 117 million telephone subscribers and you have 30 million account holders, then it’s a huge gap. Theoretically, you have 80 million people that have phones and don’t have bank accounts. So they need to bring those people into the banking sector. Financial inclusion is something we need to do. Insurance, as a ratio of Gross Domestic Product, is low. Insurance penetration is low; not many of us have insurance products. Many people don’t buy life assurance; some people have houses and they are not insured. Insurance is a good pool for long term funds. Capital market is also low, we have less than five million retail players in the capital market, yet we are more than 30 million in the working class. In other markets, capital market is used to raise cheap funds. Another thing is that the companies that have big muscles are not quoted. How many GSM companies are quoted? The same goes for oil companies?
How can government make these big companies to quote on the Nigerian Stock Exchange?
Fundamentally, it’s a free market. Money will go to the best place and interest will chase the best return. If you make our capital market attractive in terms of raising funds, companies will come to the market to quote. Every investor or business executive is looking to maximise shareholders’ value. Today, the GSM companies get loans from banks and parent companies while they know that they can get cheaper funds from equity from the NSE. The next issue is making it easy for them to list. What are the listing requirements? Can we give them listing requirements? For instance, when we licensed GSM companies, we gave some conditions that made it attractive for them; the government gave them five year tax holiday. I will argue that the NSE should look for incentives that will make it attractive for them to come. All these companies have listed somewhere except Glo. So, they are not averse to listing.
How can the NSE and Securities and Exchange Commission convince investors who lost huge money in the past to return to the capital market?
We all need to understand that investment, whether in the capital market or anywhere, is a serious thing. Before you buy a share, you need to do due diligence. Most of us went into the capital market because people were buying stocks, so we joined the bandwagon. The NSE and SEC need to do a lot of investor education. When you buy a stock based on family support, that is not an investment decision, it’s a family support and that’s an emotional decision. The SEC and NSE should also ensure transparency in the market.
The Monetary Policy Committee has kept the benchmark lending rate at 12 per cent at 10 consecutive meetings; what’s your view on this?
Lending rate at 12 per cent is high and the Central Bank of Nigeria understands that. But I think the issue is why it is at 12 per cent and not three per cent or four per cent like we have in other developed economies. There are structural issues and if these issues are not resolved, we may not get it right. Looking at 12 per cent is just looking at the symptoms; you need to address the underlying cause.
What is your assessment of the cash-less policy?
What the industry has achieved with the cash-less policy is phenomenal. It’s absolutely incredible in my own view but there is still a lot to do. The banking industry needs to continue to work on it. I’m close to the industry and I know they are committed to doing it. Eighteen months ago, we had less than 13,000 point of sale terminals in Lagos. Today, we have over 100,000 machines. Some people made that investment; it’s in their interest to get their returns. It’s taking a while, I understand. There are challenges, but you should also know that they are not in control of power, telecoms and other things. It’s unfortunate that there are other issues that the banks are not directly in control of.
In what ways is Accenture helping other companies to grow?
Accenture is a $28bn company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. It has presence in over 120 countries. We provide three kinds of services – management consulting, technology and outsourcing to clients. Our clients are businesses and governments.
A typical project is where we help clients to diagnose a problem. We try to find out if it’s a technical problem or a people problem. We then work with the clients to design what the new process should be. Once that is done, we walk with them to maintain that technology. So that’s an ideal process.
Our mission is to help clients to become high performing. Accenture is a transportation company. We move a company from one location to another. So, if a client is in Ibadan today and says that its new strategy is to move to Ghana. Accenture will work with them and help them move to Ghana. That will mean helping them to put the processes in place or the people in place.

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Self-confidence: Moving from insecurity to empowerment


Gloria Ogunbadejo
You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.
— Eleanor Roosevelt
 If you have self-confidence, you have a firm belief in your powers, abilities or capacities. And if you don’t, you might be a perfectly capable, successful person, but one or more fears may be keeping you from believing in yourself. Some of these fears might include: fear of not being liked by others, fear of not being valued by others, fear of criticism, fear of making mistakes and fear of not living up to others’ expectation of you. Much as we would like to think we are unique, on the issue of fears, we are all very similar.
Some fears are unusual, but most of our fears are evolutionary according to the experts and they develop as a response to situations thought to cause harm, which could be culturally based (we all know how powerful this can be). If the fears aren’t innate, we may have picked them up from our parents or by watching a frightening experience. The higher the person’s perceived threat of danger, the more frightened the person will be.
According to the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, 19 million people have specific phobias, such as crossing bridges or tunnels; 15 million have a social phobia, e.g. public speaking; and two million have agoraphobia ( which is the fear of being in public places where there are other people).
According to the experts, more of us are experiencing anxiety disorders relating to fears and phobias. Much of the rise in anxiety is related to people feeling less connected with others and living more unsettled, even unstable, tenuous family lives. There’s been an increase in divorce and separations, the definition and parameters of marriage are constantly changing, and there appears to be a huge reduction or distortion in our collective moral compass. As the expectations for happiness increase, there is a commensurate decline in feeling satisfied.
Fear is a painful emotion triggered by the apprehension of (real or imagined) danger, terror, or displeasure. It is real or imagined because many of our fears are merely concoctions of our imagination. But our subconscious mind cannot distinguish between real images and imagined ones. It will produce the same fear response throughout the body for both. And then, as you probably know by now, what you fear is then likely to become your reality.
Once the mind gets the signal that there is something to fear (whether or not there is in reality), it releases hormones throughout the body that trigger defensive chemical mechanisms. This is the ‘fight, flight or fright’ response. This is something we would have all experienced at some points in our lives.
The physiology/biology of fear is that a message is sent to your hypothalamus, which is a gland that regulates the stress response, to be on high alert. Your hypothalamus then sends out signals preparing you for your response. Almost instantaneously blood rushes to the centre of your body, increasing your heart rate and your blood pressure, and then your muscles tense. Your hands and feet get cold and sweaty, and you’re ready to fight-or flee (unless you are the incredible hulk or superman, in which case you can take on the whole world singlehandedly). Fear stimulates chemical releases in the brain that block thinking and concentration and immobilise you. Fear can make you completely freeze.
To overcome fear, you must first identify where and when you learned it. In other words is it rational or irrational? Either way, it is real to you in your mind and sometimes once you acknowledge the origin is irrational it becomes easier to overcome.
Whether your fear is of a past experience recurring or of something new, the same fear tends to be relived over and over again until it has reached a point that it is all-consuming. Fear is not something that can be completely eliminated as nature has given us the ability to feel it in order to protect us also. However, due to the same nature and nurture, it can get out of control, so instead, in these instances, we aim to release it and replace it with a positive reaction to the very same stimuli. In other words, think of it as mastering your fear.  In order to master your fear, you must first identify it and get to know it well.
There are some exercises you can try to help in mastering your fears. Most of the suggestions described are things that need to be carried out with some commitment and consistency over a period of time
Give your fear a name and write its biography. When did it come into your life? Why?  Describe the day, if you recall and/or the circumstances. Often the mere creation and writing of the story deepens your understanding of your fear and helps you master it. Remember you cannot master something if you do not know it well.
The instant an unpleasant thought enters your mind simply assure yourself that the most powerful experience of the moment is the relaxation you are feeling. By saying this to yourself, it is an attempt to instantly change the state you are in. You are diminishing the power of the fear and its effects on you. You take yourself mentally to a place of safety and serenity so your body can use its precious resources on the task at hand rather than overreacting.
‘Courage is resistance to and mastery of fear – not the absence of fear’

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Courage To Stay Healthy


 by    Most dieters try to control overeating by the use of willpower. I know because I’ve tried it myself.
My mother was a marvelous cook, and often before visiting her I would decide I was not going to break my dietary routine. I would try to envision myself refusing all the freshly baked pies, muffins, and breads. In my mind, I repeated over and over, “I will not overeat.”
As soon as I stepped inside the house, I would smell a freshly baked pie.  My mind told me, “yum! You’ve had that before.” My emotions said, “You like that kind of pie, and your mother made it just for you.” My will would try to respond with “I shouldn’t eat any.”
My willpower usually worked until I sat down at the table with my mother. Then she would say, “Come on, help me finish this up. It will never be better than now!” “Have another piece; you eat like a mouse.” “You can diet when you get back home; enjoy yourself while you are here on vacation.”
That’s when I discovered that willpower is not enough. It takes more than will power to stop that kind of temptation. What is  the remedy? It takes courage to adopt a new lifestyle and sustain it.
A Little Change Could Help
The  pastries actually convert very quickly to sugar. In fact if you put a piece of white bread in your mouth for a few minutes, you will notice a sweet taste. The starch is converted to glucose. Yes your white bread is fortified with important vitamins and minerals, such as iron and folic acid and contain a little fraction of protein and  fiber . But for the most part, refined carbohydrates are sweet nothings.
Have you ever mixed a little water into a big bowl of white flour? What do you get? Paste! And that is what too many biscuits and processed foods are becoming in your digestive tract. It may sound extreme but they are junk foods.
So in  order to save my myself from overeating  junk food when I am on vacation, I decided to always get some fruits and vegetables such that even when I unavoidably indulge, I can always take my fruits and vegetable which are rich in fibre. It takes plenty of courage to start something new and stick to it.
In centuries past, the base of people’s diet looked much different than today. It contains large amounts of fibre, the most neglected elements of Nigerian diet. The average person only gets about ten to fifteen grams of fibre per day. We need an absolute minimum of thirty grams. The best sources are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and especially beans. As a rule of thumb, an average serving of fruits or veggies contains about two to four grams. That means you will need the equivalent of ten servings to meet your minimum fibre requirement.
Some of the best sources of fibre are corn, beans, and legumes at five to seven grams per half cup! Also remember that it is very important to increase your water intake as you increase your fibre.
Many cultures with diets that are high in fibre (up to 50 or more grams per day) have very low rates of heart disease and cancer. Fibre is essential for good health and has been linked to the prevention of many other diseases as well.
A recent journal  of Medical Association, read that  of 65000 women ages 40-65, a diet high in sugar and low in fibre more than doubles a woman’s risk of developing Type 11 (adult onset) diabetes over a diet low in sugar and high in fiber.
So what is fibre? It is the indigestible part of plant food and there are two kinds- soluble and insoluble. Think of the soluble fibre as a sponge that soaks up fluid and excess dietary fat as it travels through the digestive tract.
Imagine the insoluble fibre like a scrub brush cleaning up the walls of your intestines as it travels the miles and miles of it’s journey. Fibre absorbs large quantities of water in your digestive tract. That’s one of the reasons it keeps food moving through at a healthy rate.
Fibre is not just for regularity. It also helps notch up your energy, and that’s because it slows the release of  carbohydrate into your bloodstream, thus steadying your blood sugar. Let me give you an example. If you drink a glass of orange juice, the fructose (or natural fruit sugar) in the juice would quickly move into your bloodstream and your blood sugar would rise. That will give you an immediate boost of energy. But the downside is that it also falls as quickly as it rose. Within a short period of time your energy is waning. You’re much better off eating an orange.
Fibre is a key to weight control. Stabilise your blood sugar throughout the day by including fiber in every meal or snack. Over time, you will be amazed at your energy level. You will probably have less sugar craving as well. And because fibre passes through the digestive system intact , not all it’s  calories stay with the body.
Fibre-rich foods typically take a longer time to eat than fatty foods, thereby providing sufficient time for satiety to be attained and overeating to be avoided. High-fibre foods also contain mass, which fills the stomach, producing a “stick to the ribs” feeling-a psychological benefit. And there are many other benefits you get from  fibre, these includes:
•Decrease in fat absorption.
•Stabilises blood sugar
•Promotes digestion
•Fills you up
•Lowers blood pressure
•Lowers serum cholesterol
•Helps prevent digestive diseases
•Promotes regularity
• Contributes to bowel cleansing.
Lastly, look for situations to be active. Take several daily 10-15 minute brisk walks and increase your activity by doing things like taking the stairs instead of the elevator. This serves to increase your calorie burn even more. People who are consistently on the go can add 20% to their energy expenditure over the day
The secret to permanent weight loss is training your body to be a more efficient calorie-burning engine by maximizing your metabolism.  Be courageous.

UK £3,000 visa bond: Finally, London ‘Bridge is falling down’

ukLondon Bridge is falling down,Falling down, falling down, London Bridge is falling down,My fair… Just about every educated person is familiar with the traditional nursery rhyme “London Bridge Is Falling Down” which deals with the collapsing London Bridge and attempts, realistic or fanciful, to repair it. Several theories have been advanced to explain the meaning of the rhyme and identity of the “fair lady” of the refrain.
However, the meaning of the rhyme and identity of the ‘fair lady’ are no longer mysteries for the average Nigerian traveller on whose face the London bridge seems to have collapsed.
Rated the 6th largest oil producing nation in the world, Nigeria is also termed the “Giant of Africa” and its dense population makes it the most populous black nation in the world. But it does appear that all the appellations are nothing but self-adulation as they hold no sway whenever America and Britain decide to impose varying degrees of sanctions on the nation.
Saturday Vanguard’s LEVINUS NWABUGHIOGU, in this special report, samples opinions regarding the recent imposition of 3,000 Pounds Sterling Travel bonds on Nigerians by the Government of the United Kingdom.
Again, Britain has sneezed and sent shivers down the spines of Nigerians. Like in some theatrical stance, both countries have continued to demonstrate that once upon a time, they lived as mother and daughter. And so, from time to time, Britain stirs up a controversy suggestive of the fact that She “discovered”, colonized and reluctantly later gave independence to Nigeria.
Just on Monday this week, news made the rounds that the Government of the United Kingdom (UK) had plans to impose 3,000 pounds as travel bonds on the citizens of six countries, among them Nigeria, Ghana, Bangladesh, Sri-Lanka, Pakistan and India.
While Nigeria and Ghana are West-African countries, the rest are Asian – all bearing the tag “high risk” countries. Interestingly, the other countries were also colonized by Britain and so, with that, are tucked into the conglomerate of the Commonwealth Nations.
But that is an intimacy that seems to be lost on the home policy of the British Government each time the need arises. Instead, Britain always appears brutish and lashes out heavily on these countries. Such was the case when the country came up with the new travel policy during the week.
Hear the British Home Secretary, Ms. Theresa May, who said: “This is the next step in making sure our immigration system is more selective, bringing down net migration from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands, while still welcoming the brightest and the best to Britain.”
She added: “In the long run, we’re interested in a system of bonds that deters overstaying and recovers costs if a foreign national has used our public services.
“Consequently, from November, a pilot scheme which will target visitors from those countries who will have to pay the UK government a form of cash guarantee or deposit to deter immigration abuse will commence. They will forfeit the £3,000 if they overstay in Britain and fail to return to their home countries by the time their visa has expired.”
Apart from security reasons which many believe prompted the charges, sources also disclosed that the Home Office of the British Government might as well be targeting countries with high volumes of visitor visa applications and what it deems to be relatively high levels of fraud and abuse.
Meanwhile, the development came as a shock even though it wasn’t the first time the British Government would be imposing stringent sanctions on the country. Since then, a lot of concerns have been raised by Nigerians just as some democratic institutions such as the National Assembly, in stout defence of Nigerian citizens in Britain, have also threatened to reciprocate the hostile measure.
A peep into history indicates that in September 1986, the Margaret Thatcher administration decided, at the end of a cabinet meeting that in future, travelers from Nigeria, India, Ghana, Bangladesh and Pakistan would need to obtain visas in their own countries before traveling.
Before the 1986 decision, nationals of all Commonwealth nations, except Sri Lanka, did not need visas to travel to the UK.
Justifying the decision, Home Secretary at the time, Douglas Hurd, said: “We have to have immigration checks, and I think it is more sensible that these checks are carried out before someone sets off on a journey.”
Reacting, the opposition Labour Party described the Thatcher government decision on visa requirements for the five countries as racist. Then shadow home secretary in the Labour Party, Gerald Kaufman, said: “It is typical of this government that in future, white visitors from racialist South Africa will be able to come here without a visa while a visa will be required for parents and other family members of British citizens living and working in this country.”
But as the country heats up, many Nigerians have evaluated the measure and appear divided in their views. While some bemoaned the UK government’s decision, many lashed out at the Nigerian Government and the elite whom they said had not made the country any better for the people.
They were also emphatic about the dilapidated social infrastructure and poor living conditions which the government has refused to improve on.
But at the time of filing this report, there were speculations that the British government might rescind the decision – though no step in that direction had been taken.
Meanwhile, Saturday Vanguard exclusively sought the views of some Nigerians on the issue and below were the excerpts of that encounter.
Must we go to UK?—Ambassador Leo Okougwu, Ex-Nigerian Envoy to Romania and Bulgaria
If you are going to a foreign country, you prepare for it. If you are overstaying, then please, ask the host country, let them know that you are overstaying and this is the reason why you are overstaying. It is a very simple exercise. But if you are overstaying and the country doesn’t know that you are overstaying, it is wrong.
If our Legislators made a law saying that this will happen if you overstay in Nigeria, you have to pay a certain amount of money, then that has to do with the sovereignty of that country. But if you don’t want it that way, you must put certain things about other countries into consideration before enacting your legislations. If the British did that and looked at the circumstances in that case and then said, because of the experience we have been having, this is what we are going to do and they come up with a regulation and it is approved by their parliament and you said you are going to oppose it?
If you want to go there and they said you have to deposit 3,000 pounds and you said you don’t have it, then, don’t go. Are they forcing you to come? Must you go? Why must you go because you have money and next door, you have people suffering? What for?
Develop your own tourism industry. Look at your hospitals. Equip them. I tell you that the people you are going to meet in UK hospitals might be Nigerian doctors. But why are they there? It is because you are not encouraging them to come back home by having bad hospitals; by having tacitly equipped hospitals. That’s why most of them are there. Encourage your doctors to come home and do what they have to do.
Blame it on the leaders —Dr. Ogbonnaya Onuoha
The decision taken by the British is born out of national security and national interest . Maybe there is national pride to stop other nationals of countries of the world from getting quick
access into their country. If we have a good country, which I think we do, but the leaders are not as good in their intervention as what we have in other countries, it’s up to them to now ask the government why it is so.
Nigerian leaders should bury their heads in shame—Annkio Briggs, Social Crusader and Human Rights Activist
Any government official that is arguing the demand that the British government is making should know they have every right to make that demand. If Nigeria doesn’t like it, they should also make the same demand on the British citizens. But I think the government officials should be ashamed of themselves that they are spending time arguing over this issue.
It is actually an embarrassment to all Nigerians that we are singled out in this manner and it is because of the lack of accountability and the failure of government that has made this possible. It is not your fault, it’s not the market man’s fault; it is the fault of the Senators and the members of House that are now arguing the point. You see, you and I don’t have that luxury. The man in the community and in the market doesn’t have that luxury.
It is up to you and I, the man on the street, the man in the market to make sure that our so-called politicians and the elected don’t abandon us and fly out, and how do we do it? We do it by taking power, by having people’s power and insisting that everybody must get medical care here. That way, we will make sure that our hospitals work and our roads are good.
As a human being and as somebody who will speak up against injustice, whether in Nigeria or outside of Nigeria, I think that we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that the United Kingdom is a country and therefore like Nigeria.
And the United Kingdom is a country governed by its own rules and regulations. The UK, like Nigeria, has the right to change its laws when it suits them against whomever they choose. The British government must have a reason why it proposes this. But to someone who is aware, we know that people, not just Nigerians, but people seeking greener pastures travel to other countries like Europe and America.
All over Europe and America, people are dying in the desert trying to get to places like Italy, Turkey and places like that. When you look at that, you can begin to see why any country would want to make sure that only the people they permit are in their country and that when they tell you to come in for six months, or for two months, or two weeks for medical reasons or for education or whatever, when you finish that you will go.
The fact that people have overstayed and continue to over –stay, whether we like it or not, is a strain on the country. It is an economic strain on them. It is a social strain on them in the sense that, fair enough, there was the issue of the young man who strapped a bomb to himself on his way to America. The only reason why he boarded was to blow off the plane.
This was a young man who traveled to the UK for studies, for exposure. He got exposed in the UK and also had some level of contacts while he was in Nigeria.
Then recently, the young man who is a Nigerian by the fact that his parents are Nigerians but was born in the United Kingdom, tried to blow up a plane. So I am just trying to say that if this is happening in Nigeria, what will Nigerians do? Nigerians would be shutting their borders so that people from Niger, people from Mali, Chad or Cameroon do not cross into Nigeria illegally and perpetrate terrorist acts in Nigeria.
It is a serious punishment on Nigeria and Nigerians —Chief Sam Nkire, National Chairman of the Peoples Progressive Alliance (PPA)
I think the leadership of this country must protect its citizens. It is a serious punishment on Nigerians and Nigeria has come a long way with Britain. Nigeria was colonized by Britain and so many Nigerians live in Britain and we haven’t been found wanting. We have always seen Britain as our second home. So it will be very sad to have that kind of imposition. If Britain wants to do that to other countries, I don’t think it is right to do it to Nigeria.
I don’t think that should happen because it is a free world. If a Briton wants to live in Nigeria, he is free to do that. If a Nigerian wants to live in Britain, it is up to him. I don’t think there should be any restriction. People should treat others fairly and equitably.
FG must protect Nigerian citizens….Chief Victor Umeh, National Chairman, All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA
Our Government must protect Nigerian citizens. That is very terrible. It is like asking Nigerians not to come to the UK anymore. So, I believe that our Ministry of Foreign Affairs with our Government will be able to liaise with the British Government and get that policy rescinded.
You canot restrict people from exercising their freedom of choice of places where they can get treatments if they can afford those treatments. But the important thing is that the pressure is on the Government of Nigeria to make our medical facilities excellent so that people can go to hospitals here, get treated and then go home without wanting to go abroad. If our medical facilities are functional and
good enough, there will be no need for anybody to travel out of the country.
It shows the failure of Nigerian Government—Dr. Oladimeji Lawal, Public Administration, Gombe State University
It is a wake-up call for the country that we should build our nation. We should understand the fact that there is no place in the world that can never be a home. What the UK government attempted to do is a demonstration of a serious country that is concerned about the influx of people into its territory, that is concerned about the wellbeing of its people and its infrastructure. So, it is not a reason why Nigeria should be crazy about the UK asking you to come with 3,000 pounds and all of that. I mean, there is no big deal about it.
It is not a must that you should travel out of the country. It is not a must that you go and stay in another man’s land. Discover your own, make it attractive and people will be looking forward to staying with us, working and living with us if we have a comfortable environment. What they have simply told us is that we cannot continue to rely on them and then we should look inwards, develop our society, make our society comfortable for people to stay, work and live.
So, there is no justification for the cry. It is their country and they have made a policy as regards how they want to run their country, the kind of people they want to admit into their territory and how long they want you to stay. In terms of International Relations, it is a demonstration of a serious, focused country. So, if we think we are very responsible as a country, whether we go in there or not, it doesn’t matter.
This is even time to reciprocate what the UK has done by saying that the British national will have some millions of Naira before coming into Nigeria to know whether we are the ones that will feel the effect or them. The reactions of some Nigerians to this development these few days practically demonstrates that our governments at all levels are not serious of building a society where we find comfort and live peacefully.
It is insult on Nigerian people—–Comrade Yinka Odumakin, Human Rights Activist
It is a gratuitous insult on the people of Nigeria by the dwindled British Empire. If after all the years of colonizing Nigeria the Brits think they have not milked us enough, the Nigerian Government should bare its teeth against British interests in Nigeria. When Abacha stopped British Airways from flying to Nigeria, London had to beg.
Whether or not Britain reverses the decision, one thing the move has succeeded in doing is telling the Nigerian government and the elite who junket to the UK and similar places on a whim that the time to develop local infrastructure is long over due.
A country that got her independence 53 years ago, in the reckoning of many Nigerians, ought to have made itself the envy of the world. Once again, the President Goodluck Jonathan administration has been challenged to live up to its mandate.
Source: vanguard

I Get Caned in School Because My Teachers Thought I Was Lazy… But I Was Battling Partial Blindness

020613F5.Adejunmobi.jpg - 020613F5.Adejunmobi.jpg
Grace Adejunmobi

At different times in life struggles, two governors came to her aid when all hope was lost. But Mrs. Adenike Grace Adejunmobi, Director in the Oyo State Ministry of Education, did not only achieve her dreams, she surpassed them and broke record as the first physically-challenged to reach the very top in the history of the ministry, writes Funke Olaode
Sitting calmly with the aura of fulfillment around her at her old Bodija, Oyo State home, Mrs. Adenike Grace Adejunmobi couldn’t have asked for a better birthday. On May 1, 2013, she turned 56 and was recently promoted director in the Ministry of Education of Oyo State. To many, this may not be a big deal but to those who have followed her story, hers is a story of tenacity and perseverance. She was born into the family of Okunola of Ejigbo in Osun State, where she started her early education. But as the year rolled by, her future appeared bleak when she was discovered to be partially blind.
Signs of Partial Blindness
Going down memory lane, Adejumobi said: “Early childhood was not pleasant because I was born with partial blindness. And that time, there was no school for people with low vision. At the age of 12 after attending some regular primary schools among regular sighted children, I found out that I couldn’t cope.  My parents didn’t know what was happening to me. Occasionally, the teachers would write on the black board and asked me to read it out but I couldn’t. I get caned most of the time because they thought I was being lazy”
Ignorance on the side of the parents nearly truncated her destiny, as parents didn’t pay much to her predicament. And of course, mobility became a problem.  “I was asked to stop coming to school.  Each time I got home I would be crying but my parents didn’t pay much attention to me because we were so many. And as I was growing, mobility became difficult because I didn’t have the special mobility skills. So I was always bumping into things. They also realized that my eye movement was different from the other children and it became a matter of concern to them. My parents took me to some eye doctors and I found that with recommended glasses, I couldn’t cope. After being treated at Eye Clinic in Kano my problem persisted.  By the time it dawned on my parents that I would need special skill to survive, my father diverted his attention to other children and it wasn’t easy for me to get financial assistance from him. He didn’t know how to handle the situation so I wasn’t given the best care in the family,” she recalled.
Facing the Reality of Life...
Instead of wallowing in self-pity, Adejunmobi took life as it came but was determined to succeed.  Through the help of her late grandmother she was enrolled at the Parcelli School for the Blind and Partially- impaired at Surulere, Lagos. “At the age of 12 in 1969 I went to Parcelli School for the Blind in Surulere, Lagos where I picked the skills of reading (Braille) and typing and with some other vocational such as cookery. I finished from Parcelli School for the Blind and moved to Notredame (meaning Our Lady) Girls’ Secondary School, Oro, Kwara State in 1974 as a boarder. Notredame is not a special school or school for the blind. It is a regular school where they had a unit for the blind. I was in regular classes with regular sighted students. While I was in that school, I enjoyed the Kwara State government scholarship because it wasn’t easy for me to pay my school fees.  I was fed up and thought I was going to drop out of school. And during one of the breaks in form two, I just picked up my typewriter without consulting the school principal and wrote the then Military Governor of Kwara State, David Jemibewon. This was in 1975. I wrote directly to his office and sent it through our mail prefect. I wasn’t optimistic about it; I was like let me try my luck if something good would come out of it. At a stage, I perceived the letter may end up in the trash can. Surprisingly, the following week Gov. Jemibewon sent somebody from his office to the principal. They took the list of everything that I needed such as typewriter, Braille, special allowance for travelling and pocket money and paid my school fees from form two in 1975 till I finished from that school in 1979.
Going to America
With Jemibewon to the rescue, Adejunmobi was set to conquer the world and live her dreams as the hands of providence continued.  By the time she finished secondary school, one of the Rev. Sisters who had been following her life went on leave to Scotland and from there went to Boston in America. While in the US, she spoke to the Dean of Continuing Education Center (CEC) at Massachusetts. That move changed her destiny.
She said: “At that time I was in my 20s and couldn’t start regular degree class. In America 18-22 is the right age for College. I was above 22 and the Rev. Sister obtained the CEC form for me at Emmanuel College, Boston Massachusetts where I did my degree in Rehabilitation Counseling in Psychology from January 1982 to 85. After I had secured the admission, this sister went to Rome and discussed my matter with the authorities that I was financially handicapped and I had disability. The sisters of Notredame in Rome sent two thousand dollars to Emmanuel College on my behalf ahead of me. I also sought for financial assistance from the government of Oyo State and the federal government. I taught briefly after secondary school at the Oyo State School for the Blind in Ogbomoso.  I was on Level four on salary of N154 and saved the money. As providence would have it, I secured a scholarship from the federal government during the International Year of the Disabled in 1981.
“I remember the federal government declared 10 years of financial and scholarship for those who wanted to go for special education then either within or outside Nigeria. I was one of the beneficiaries. I got the scholarship in 1981 but didn’t travel until January 1982 because I was looking for my basic travelling allowance and Visa. I travelled to America in 1982 where I had my first degree. I came back to Nigeria in 1985 and did my National Youth Service Corps at the University College Hospital, Ibadan”.
Searching for Job
At the end of her youth service, Adejunmobi was at home for 21 months looking for a job, sending her curriculum to different organisations but all with negative responses. “I had met my husband and we were always going out together looking for a job. I was sending out my CV and also writing letters of appeal to both the state and federal governments. There was no solution. We tried the Oyo State Ministry of Education there was no positive response. I first wrote a letter to the then Military Governor, Major. Gen. Adetunji Olurin who only minuted on it but didn’t act”.

Getting Governor’s Appointment
“My breakthrough came when the late Gov. Oresanya Sasaeyan took over from Gov. Olurin. God intervened through the late Sasaeyan. In fact, people I knew warned me not to come to their office again that people with sights had not been employed and me that was being led around was looking for employment. God used the late Sasaeyan for me. We took the letter to the Gov’s office that day but the people around said he was busy. Luckily for me, the ADC saw us, took the letter and included it among the mails he was going to take home for the governor. And that was on Thursday and there was going to be a Sallah break. On Monday we went back to the governor’s office and an officer came out of the governor’s office and asked me to go to the Ministry of Education that my letter had been forwarded there.
“This was November 1988. And when I got there I was told Mr. Governor had given me a governor’s appointment as education officer at the Ministry education unit. I have served in the ministry since 1988 rose through the ranks from level eight at education officer, senior education officer, principal education officer, assistant director, deputy director and now director on level 16. It was a feat because I happened to be the first physically-challenged to reach the top”.
Meeting My Husband
The Adejunmobis are like a sesame street who met by divine providence.  They both met at the Nigerian Embassy in New York. She had gone there to collect her stipend from the scholarship of Oyo State Government. “My husband too came from Texas to collect his own stipend because he was also enjoying the federal government scholarship for a PhD programme in Mass Communication. He later visited me in Boston and the rest is history. We did our traditional wedding in 1988 December in Ejigbo my hometown. We did the marriage blessing after four children at the Chapel of Resurrection, University of Ibadan and our children were our best man, best lady, ring bearer and the flower girl in 2004”.
Running the Homefront
With modesty, Adejunmobi visual disability she says hasn’t affected the running of her home as there is nothing she cannot do in the house.  “The most difficult chore in Nigeria is shopping but my husband does that. I will go with him, stay in the car while he does all the shopping. And as soon as the children grew up they took over. But as soon as the groceries are brought home that is where my own chore starts- cooking, cutting of the vegetable, making stew and soup and preparation of the dishes. I do the washing of the clothes, dishes, cleaning of the house and stuffs like that until recently when I employed people to wash for me. You can hardly know that there is anything wrong with me”.
The Adejunmobi’s are blessed with four children- two boys and two girls. How has it been knowing and relating with the children?  “I know that I have four children of two girls and two boys. I can identify them by the voices. And when they were toddlers God was in control from conceiving, delivery and raising them. God has been faithful and my husband has been supportive. I am grateful to God that all of them are responding to training. They all went through Polytechnic where they acquired National Diploma before pursuing a degree. My first daughter, Adetayo who is currently doing her youth service studied public administration at the Polytechnic Ibadan, wrote JAMB and later studied French at the University of Ibadan. My second child also passed through the Polytechnic Ibadan and is currently pursuing a degree in Language and Communication Arts at the University of Ibadan (distance learning programme). My two last boys also paid homage at the Polytechnic Ibadan and my first son is currently at the University of Lagos studying Political Science and the baby of the house is at the Ladoke Akintola University studying Agric-Economic,” she said with a tone of accomplishment.
What I Studied Really Helped
Mrs. Adejunmobi’s travails through life has taught her many lessons: “one of them is adaptability because it took me a long time to accept my situation as I am always wallowing in self-pity. What I studied really helped. For instance, we were taught how to cope with disability. The society can be kind and can be cruel at the same time. I have found that in order to allow the society to accept you, you must display your talent; you must even blow your talents at times. God helped me with the assistance of my husband to rise through the ranks. Each time I went for interview I l always excelled that though I can’t see but I can talk and my brain is sharp”.

People Do Business With People They Like

People ultimately choose to do business with people they like, and everyone likes someone who appreciates them.
I once read a quote by the ever so brilliant writer known as Anonymous. It states, “People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.”  The most powerful tool you have in creating success in your life is to appreciate other people. When you appreciate others you will find that your relationships are stronger, your circle of friends will grow wider, your career and business will succeed beyond your expectations, and your life will simply be happier. So who wouldn’t want all of that?!  And how do we make that happen?
The two most powerful words in any language are “Thank you.” Saying thank you communicates that you value and appreciate the other person. Saying thank you has the power to completely change the other person’s mood for the better. Saying thank you has the power to create friendships. Saying thank you has the influence to create loyalty. Saying thank you to everyone you come in contact with would make you one of the most beloved people in the world. Forgetting to say thank you leaves the other person feeling taken for granted and unappreciated, and one can easily surmise the damage those feelings would do toward building future bonds.
Now that we all agree on the importance of saying “thank you”, let’s talk about a few tips on how to say it best.
When saying thank you, it is best to be specific about exactly what you are thankful for. When you take time to do so you are helping that employee feel appreciated, but at the same time you are also teaching them the behaviors they should repeat in order to receive further thanks in the future. For example, a manager might say to an employee who did a good job on their given assignment, “Thank you for the attention you paid to the smallest details on this project. I realize you put in extra hours to get this completed so smoothly and I truly appreciate your efforts.” That employee will walk away feeling appreciated as well as knowing that paying attention to detail and going the extra mile are behavior patterns they want to continue to follow in order to receive future praise.
Saying thank you to someone out of the blue in an unexpected moment can make a huge impact on someone else. For example, when the person has done nothing for you in that moment just stop and say thank you to them for something they exemplify, such as, “Thank you for always setting an example of integrity with your life.” Those unexpected thank yous can create a lasting impression on the other person.
One of the most powerful forms of appreciation is when you take the time to say “Thank you” to someone in a handwritten note. In all my years as a CEO I found time and time again that the most valued gift I could give someone was a handwritten note of thanks, and the only items I have saved without fail over the years are the handwritten notes of thanks that employees and clients sent to me.  There is something so deeply personal and meaningful in a handwritten note of appreciation. At my past company we had thousands of thank you cards with the company logo printed for the employees to be able to write and mail handwritten thank you cards out to our clients, our vendors, and each other. The value created over the years from these simple handwritten notes didn’t equal millions of dollars in value, they created hundreds of millions of dollars because they helped us to grow our company to levels beyond expectations because of the close personal bonds with our clients and service providers.
We all have hundreds of opportunities to say thank you every day. We can thank the gal behind the counter at the gas station who rings us up when we grab our morning diet soda. We can thank the person in the drive-through who hands us our lunch order. We can thank the person who holds the door open for us when we walk in the building. If you pay attention for even one day to everyone who could possibly deserve to hear a “thank you” you will be amazed at the number of opportunities that could be missed in a day if we don’t pay attention to them. There is never a downside to saying thank you to someone. It can only make your own life and the lives of those around you better.
And so with that I want to take a moment to say “Thank You” to all of you who read my articles, who take time to comment on them, and who have chosen to also read my daily blogs posted at where many of you have shared such kind and supportive comments there. Each of you has touched my life for the better and I truly thank you for that. THANK YOU!
~Amy Rees Anderson


29 Jun 2013
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220412F1.Stephanie-Okereke.jpg - 220412F1.Stephanie-Okereke.jpg

Marriage has been wonderful. It’s fun and I feel a little different sometimes but I try not to be burdened by my new status as a married person. We’re still a young couple trying to live our lives and have fun, work hard and stay committed to each other and never take each other for granted.
Sometimes you say you want to take a back seat for a while because you just got married; you want to settle in to absorb the whole married life as you try to reorganize your life. It’s a different stage in your life and you want to re-strategize properly. But I’ve done a few movies for other people.
What I’m focusing most of my attention on now is my new project. The movie is titled, Dry. I’ve finished the first phase of the film and I’m going to start the second phase soon and I’m working hard to see if I can finish it this year. The movie is shot in different places, Nigeria and abroad. Even in Nigeria, we had to shoot in different cities, Lokoja, Cross River, Abuja, Sokoto and Lagos. The phase one of shooting in Nigeria is done and I’m prepping for the second phase right now.
Dry as a movie is going to bring up a lot of the maternal issues that we have in this country and the fact that a lot of less privileged women are dying during childbirth. It also dwells on early marriage and the backlash. It is also going to bring to focus the need for young girls to be allowed to live their lives so that they can fulfill their destiny. And I’m going to be using the project to create awareness about VVF. It’s something I’ve been working on since I was in the university and it has been like a burden to me. It is something that I need to deliver so that I can feel light. And what is the best way to tell the story of the people who cannot express themselves or whose voices cannot be heard? This is why I’m using film as the platform that I have to bring to light the challenges women face and see the different ways we can individually and collectively play our roles to make our society a better place.
I’m spotlighting new faces. My little girl who played the role of Halimat is new but she’s wonderful. This is her first time in acting and she played such an intensive role. It’s so difficult to find child actors and this is one of the things we need to focus attention on more these days. We must train young people to know how to act and express themselves. I was so happy when they found this girl for me. Liz Benson now Liz Amai is in the film. She has been away for almost ten years. People have been trying to get her to do films but she has been saying. But after reading the script, she made up her mind to play her role. And her acceptance was wonderful because I’d always looked up to her. She’s such a fabulous actress. Olu Jacob, Hakeem Rahman, Rakiah from the north and some other actors from the north featured in the movie as well.
I’m now on my natural hair because I just felt I should try a new thing. When you’re young, you’re up and doing but later on sometimes you just want to relax. Sometimes, carrying braids and some kinds of hair hurt. You know what it is when you have to be hitting your hair all the time and other time you have hair all over your face. I just felt like trying something new. And the fact that I can wear my natural hair, style it the way I want and change the colour is also fun.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

15 Humble & Grounded Billionaires

The following 15 super rich & successful billionaires prove to us all that “money doesn’t always change you“.

Ingvar Kamprad, founder of IKEA

Ingvar Kamprad Net Worth

Ingvar Kamprad’s Net worth: $3 billion

The founder of IKEA said he drove 15-year-old Volvo and always flew economy class, according to a 2006 Reuters article.
His frugal ways extend to his home in Switzerland, which is reportedly decorated mostly with inexpensive IKEA furniture, as well as a few family heirlooms.
According to The Daily Mail, Kamprad and his wife are often seen eating in cheap restaurants and haggling over prices at the market.
Note: Some Swedes will tell you that Kamprad is not as frugal as he would have you believe.

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple 

Tim Cook CEO Of Apple

Tim Cook’s Net worth: unknown, but he made $378 million in 2011

He may not technically be a billionaire, but Apple CEO Tim Cook is compensated handsomely.
Even so, he chooses to live a modest lifestyle. Cook lives in a modest, 2,400-square-foot condo in Palo Alto, which he bought for $1.9 million in 2010.
He’s quoted as saying in the book Inside Apple: “I like to be reminded of where I came from, and putting myself in modest surroundings helps me do that. Money is not a motivator for me.”

Chuck Feeney, co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers Group

chuck feeney net worth

Chuck Feeney’s Net worth: currently $2 million (he’s given away billions)

A Depression-era veteran with a strict personal motto: “I set out to work hard, not get rich.”
The co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers has donated more than $4 billion to disadvantaged children and public health initiatives, all while going to great lengths to remain an anonymous donor.
“He has no ego . . . He always chooses the second-cheapest wine from the wine list,” according to his biographer, former Irish Times journalist Conor O’Clery. “When we traveled together he was always dressed like a down-at-heel American tourist.”

David Cheriton, Stanford professor

David Cheriton Net Worth

David Cheriton’s Net worth: $1.3 billion

David Cheriton, the Stanford professor who has an estimated net worth of $1.3 billion from Google shares, hates the idea of living like a billionaire.
“I’m actually quite offended by that sort of thing,” he told the Edmonton Journal in a 2006 interview. ”These people who build houses with 13 bathrooms and so on, there’s something wrong with them.”
Cheriton called himself “spoiled” for taking a windsurfing vacation in Hawaii, and in a recent Forbes profile said that his biggest recent splurge was his 2012 Honda Odyssey.

Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos

Tony Hsieh Net Worth

Tony Hsieh’s Net worth: $1 billion

After selling a company to Microsoft for $265 million, Tony Hsieh could have lived in the lap of luxury. Instead, he has invested $350 million of his own money into his online business to transform downtown Las Vegas into a tech hub.
And by all accounts his lifestyle hasn’t changed since his early days in business.
“Money is just a way for Tony to get to his endgame,” said Erik Moore, an early Zappos investor. “Money just doesn’t matter to him. If he only had a million dollars left, he’d spend $999,999 to make Vegas work. He would be just as happy with a dollar in the bank and being around people he cares about and care about him.”

Karl Albrecht, co-founder of Aldi

Karl Albrecht Net Worth

Karl Albrecht’s Net worth: $25.4 billion

Aldi is to Europe what Walmart is to the US. Albrecht founded the company with his late brother Theo, and together the two made billions building the notoriously no-frills chain.
Raised by a shopkeeper mom and a miner father, they remained true to the vision of frugality that drove both their stores and their lives. When Theo was kidnapped for 17 days in 1971, his brother negotiated a bargain ransom of  $4 million — which he then wrote off as a business expense.

Christy Walton, heir to Walmart fortune

Christy Walton Net Worth

Christy Walton’s Net worth: $27.9 billion

Walton is the widow of John T. Walton, one of the sons of Walmart founder Sam Walton.
Despite their wealth, Walton wanted a normal upbringing for her son, so she raised him in an 1896 Victorian home in National City, Calif., outside of San Diego.
After her husband died in a plane crash, Walton donated the home to the International Community Foundation – Center for Cross-Border Philanthropy.

Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg Net Worth

Mark Zuckerberg’s Net worth: $9.4 billion

As the mastermind behind Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg is a billionaire many times over. But the 28-year-old leads a surprisingly low-key lifestyle.
He recently upgraded to a $7 million house in Palo Alto, but The Los Angeles Times called the home “still well below his means.”
Zuckerberg reportedly drives an Acura “because it’s safe and not ostentatious,” and famously wears the same gray t-shirt and hoodie to work every day.
His wedding to longtime girlfriend Priscilla Chan took place in his backyard, and the pair was seen digging in at a McDonald’s on their Italian honeymoon.

David Green, founder and CEO of Hobby Lobby

David Green Net Worth

David Green’s Net worth: $4.5 billion

While he could easily afford a Gulfstream of his own, Green, founder of arts and crafts retail chain Hobby Lobby, prefers to fly coach.
Instead of spending his billions on himself and his family, Green has famously become the largest individual donor to evangelical causes in America. He’s given upwards of $500 million in charitable contributions over his lifetime, according to Forbes.

Warren Buffett, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway

Warren Buffett Net Worth

Warren Buffett’s Net worth: $46 billion

Warren Buffett still lives in the Omaha, Nebraska, home he bought for $31,500 more than 50 years ago.
He doesn’t own a yacht because, as he puts it, “Most toys are just a pain in the neck.” When he married his second wife, rather than a lavish affair, it was a brief afternoon wedding at his daughter’s house in Omaha.
He has also given billions of dollars to charitable causes and begged Washington to increase his taxes.

Alexander Lebedev, Russian businessman

Alexander Lebedev Net Worth

Alexander Lebedev’s Net worth: $1.1 billion

Unlike many Russian oligarchs who flaunt their wealth buying apartments, yachts, and jets, Lebedev is notoriously frugal.
From a Guardian profile:
“Indeed, the most striking difference between him and other oligarchs is his social activism. Lebedev has used his large fortune to improve the lot of ordinary Russians. He talks enthusiastically about such unfashionable themes as flat-pack housing and potatoes.”
He is staunch in his beliefs; Lebedev was charged with “hooliganism” after punching a rival on a talk show last year.

Carlos Slim Helú, chairman and CEO of Telmex

Carlos Slim Net Worth

Carlos Slim Helu’s Net worth: $69 billion

Carlos Slim may be the wealthiest person on the planet, but that doesn’t mean he’s an extravagant spender.
The self-made billionaire lives in the same modest six-bedroom house he has owned for the past 30 years, and still drives himself to work, according to The Week.
As far as we can tell, he does not own a yacht or a private plane.

Amancio Ortega, founder of Zara

Amancio Ortega Zara Net Worth

Amancio Ortega’s Net worth: $57.5 billion

2012 was a good year for Zara founder Ortega, whose net worth rose by $22.2 billion last year.
Even so, he hasn’t let the success go to his head. Ortega and his wife live in a discreet apartment building in La Coruña, Spain, and he’s a simple dresser, wearing a uniform of blue blazer, white shirt and gray pants every day.
He goes to the same coffee shop every day and eats lunch with his employees in the Zara cafeteria. And Ortega drives an Audi A8, not some fancy supercar.
One major indulgence: Ortega owns The Global Express BD-700, a private jet designed by Bombardier that carries price tag of $45 million.

Azim Premji, chairman of Wipro Limited

Azim Premji Net Worth

Azim Premji’s Net worth: $12.2 billion

As the owner of the technology-service giant, Wipro, Azim Premji is worth more than $12 billion.
Regardless, he is said to monitor the number of toilet-paper rolls used in Wipro facilities and demands that employees switch off the lights when leaving their offices.
Premji often takes a three-wheel auto rickshaw from the Bangalore airport when returning from business trips, and drives a 1996 Ford, according to a 2003 Businessweek profile.
“Premji makes Uncle Scrooge look like Santa Claus,” said one Bangalore tech executive.

Jim C. Walton, Walmart heir and chair of Arvest Bank

 Jim C. Walton Net Worth Billionaire

Jim C. Walton’s Net worth: $19.2 billion

Jim C. Walton may belong to one of the wealthiest families in the world, but he has followed in the frugal footsteps of his father, Walmart founder Sam Walton.
The youngest and most private of the Walton siblings, Jim still resides in Bentonville, Ark., where he runs the family’s personal wealth management company from the upstairs office of “a plain old brick building” in downtown Bentonville.
In 2007, it was reported that Walton drove a 15-year-old Dodge Dakota.

Question for the readers: How would you act if your net worth was in the billions? Would it change who you are? Would you be able to live a normal life?

Article Originally By: Julie Zeveloff & Gus Lubin |
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About The Author: Joel

Joel Brown is the CEO and Founder of With a long time passion for Entrepreneurship, Self development & Success, Joel started his website with the intention of educating and inspiring likeminded people all over the world to always strive for success no matter what their circumstances. Joel’s passion for what he does shows through the continual growth of's online community. Follow Joel Brown on Twitter



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Four Things That Can Send Your Resume into the Trash

You may be the perfect fit for a job -- but a hiring manager is never going to find that out if he trashes your resume after a mere glance. Even in this age of online professional networking, a great resume is still the foundation of a successful job search.  

It's common knowledge that spelling errors and grammatical bloopers are trash triggers (and these simple mistakes top many recruiters’ lists of resume pet peeves). But is there anything else that job seekers are unwittingly doing wrong? We asked some recruiting managers and career experts about the resume errors that cause them to crumple and toss a resume at first look -- and some of their answers may surprise you.

1. Your Resume Is Badly Formatted

Looks matter. Career expert Abby Kohut lists misaligned indentations and double spaces as a couple of the things that make a resume start to look like it belongs in the garbage. The fix? Use tabs for indents, and search your document for stray double spaces.

Also beware of being too creative. "I don't like it when I receive resumes with funky fonts," says Mona Abdel-Halim, co-founder of the Web-based resume tool Resunate, who echoed other experts we spoke to. "It is not professional and it makes the resume harder to read." When choosing resume fonts, opt ones that are widely used and readable, such as Calibri or Arial, and use no more than two fonts with their associated bold and italic styles.

2. Your Resume Is Immature

Other hiring managers we talked to said they had immediately trashed resumes with pictures on them -- for example, of cartoon character Bart Simpson (in the case of one applicant for a technical writing job) or of a kitten (an applicant for a customer service job). Cute resume additions like these are for kids -- not professionals.

3. Your Resume Is Too Templated

Longtime recruiter Mike Monroe says that unaltered, familiar resume templates from word-processing programs annoy him. "This won't automatically put you in the trash, but it tells me that you have put less thought into your resume than your competition," he says.

Jessica Campbell, an HR manager for talent agency, says one of her pet peeves is "when a candidate has used a template resume," but hasn't updated it before sending it. (And if you use Word's Track Changes feature to edit your resume, make sure to accept all changes in the final version before submitting it.)

To prevent your resume from ending up in the trash for this reason, customize your resume for each job you apply for using the language of the job ad and highlighting your most relevant experience.

"When the resume is not tailored to the position, it shows you don't really understand what the employer is looking for and are just hoping your resume fits some of the criteria,” says career expert Heather Huhman, author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships: The Truth About Getting from Classroom to Cubicle. “To avoid this mistake, show the employer how you fit those [criteria] through your previous experience, skills and expertise."

4. Your Resume Is Sneaky

Kohut says she immediately distrusts people whose resumes have no dates on them. “Gaps are not a problem,” she says. “The problem is when you try to be deceptive."

David S. Williams, founder and CEO of salary consultancy SpringRaise, agrees, saying that if you are or have been unemployed, don’t try to hide it. “You may be doing yourself a disservice because you may be a strong candidate for a position, but you tried to hide your current status," he says.

A better tactic is to be straightforward on your resume, and then use your cover letter to tell the story of your career's progress -- including information about how you maximized your time away from the 9-to-5 routine. And do remember to write a cover letter -- not doing so is another guaranteed way to get your resume thrown into the trash, according to the experts.

The lifestyle habits of the rich can be yours, too!

When you hear the word “rich,” what do you think of? Yachts? Evening gowns? Travel?
That’s true to an extent, but not all rich people live that way. For this argument, we’ll define “rich” as having an excess of money, and “lavish” as obscenely using moolah like those in Hollywood.
Those who are rich, especially the self-made rich, are a different breed than most people. They do things differently. They live differently. They think differently. These differences get them where they are.
Without these actions (or an inheritance from your great uncle Earl), you’ll simply stay a reader, passive without action.
Let’s read and incorporate:
Financial habits of the rich (and how to develop them)
•Build up cash by saving it.
Yes, the rich save their cash. Rather than eating out all the time, they tuck those dollars into stock mutual funds that pay out. According to Jean Chatzky in The Difference, 55 percent of the self-made rich got there by saving.
Take action: Where are you spending that you don’t NEED to? Be honest. Write it down. Get serious about finding cheaper alternatives. If you shop at Starbucks every morning, stop. Invest in a Keurig and drop the money you would have spent into a savings account. When you’ve built it up a bit, invest it in a stock mutual fund and watch it grow.
• Don’t pay for what you don’t need.
In other words, stop trying to outdo the Jones’ and stay within your budget for things like your house and car. If you pay $400 a month for an SUV that’s drinking dollars each week, pare down. Do you really need an SUV? Would a minivan be a more cost-effective alternative?
Take action: Take a look at the places you pay for lavish upgrades, and scale them back. Could you do with a smaller home? Could you do with less expensive clothes? Be honest in your assessment, or you’re wasting your time.
Never ever pay full price for something. Always look for ways to get a cheaper price. Talk to the store manager. Wait and shop on days when clearance sales are running. If you’re an avid Target shopper, you probably already know their clearance schedule.
Take action: The next time you want something, try to find it on sale, use coupons, or negotiate for a better price. Take the money you saved and add it to your savings pile to forward on to the stock mutual fund option.
•Just do it.
This is true on so many levels. The self-made rich are people with the mindset that they can (and will) change their situations. Instead of waiting for good things to happen (or wondering why they don’t), they get out there and make them happen. They invest in businesses. They start businesses. Or they invest in things that will have high returns.
Take action: Whether you’re at work, the mall, or the grocery store, look for ways to earn more money. Don’t sit idle wishing you could do something. If you want this, you must make it happen.
• Set goals – and achieve them.
Doing is a lot more productive if you know what your goals are. The rich know what they want to earn, and they set a plan before they go out to do it. They research what will earn them the money they want, then they set and accomplish goals around it.
Take action: Set small financial goals you can easily achieve to help you build your confidence. As you reach your goals, set new ones — so that you always have your sights on a new horizon.
•Live simply.
The self-made rich live lives that are simpler than most, because the more you have, the more you pay. Do you need 100 pairs of shoes? My wife does, but she’s the exception, or so she says. Do you need three laptops in the house? Can you survive with one? You see where this is going. We’re a consumer society, and it’s reflected in all the “stuff” we buy. And most of it we don’t truly need.
Take action: Go through your house, declutter, and get rid of the things you don’t need. Then vow not to replace it with more. Think three times before buying, and always go for simple.
•Get fit.
Yep. The self-made rich take care of themselves, too. Who wants to pay hospitals thousands and thousands of dollars to fix what they broke? Not the men and women who’ve worked so hard to earn and save. They maintain their health by taking active roles in exercising and eating right.
Take action: If you already exercise, great! If you don’t, start. Increase your level of fitness and see how you feel (mentally and physically) after a few weeks. Your mind and body will love you.