Just Like You: Message from the Morning Man by Kojo Yankson


Just Like You: Message from the Morning Man
by Kojo Yankson

28th July 2015

Often, I like to tell real-life rags-to-riches, grass-to-grace stories, just to remind us all that it is possible to change our circumstances with nothing more than hard work, perseverance, and a desire to do what others won’t. Sadly, I often struggle to find Ghanaian stories that illustrate this point. But this weekend, I got one, and, like catching a rare fish, the feeling was deeply satisfying.

Nii was a smart kid with great prospects. Financial constraints meant he was unlikely to attend secondary school, until his benevolent uncle stepped in and got him into Ada Secondary School. He did not let his uncle down. He was one of the first few students from the school to gain instant admission to University of Cape Coast, where he continued to excel. This excellence served him through an MBA at the University of Hull.11755088_10153452976921894_6826358121013915547_n

Nii’s dream was to work in banking, but even at the very beginning, he wanted to run his own show. The way he saw it, if he was to be working long hours and losing sleep, he might as well do it for himself, rather than some faceless board of governors. He assessed himself and correctly identified his strength to be in strategic investments. So he took his savings – a total of GHC36,000 – and started a consultancy firm to advise banks on how to multiply their millions in the fastest, safest way.

While he was doing this, Nii started to observe the immense potential in the lending market. Maybe he could also turn his thousands into something more. It was a big risk, but he saw further than everyone around him. He foresaw the struggles, the long hours and the disappointments, the financial losses, the staff betrayals, the thefts and embezzlements by his colleagues and trusted friends – he foresaw all that, but was willing to go through it.

He was willing to go through hardships that others wouldn’t, because he saw beyond the pain, to a vision of a company that employed hundreds of Ghanaians, a company with multiple locations and thousands of happy customers, a company that improved the lives of Ghanaians through tailor-made financing solutions. An Ideal company. Ideal Finance Company

This is the story of Dr. Nii Kotei Dzani, a man who started at the back of the queue, with more disadvantages than you and I will ever have, and forged his way to a fortune, using his mind and his willingness to work hard, take risks, and solve problems. A man who took GHC36,000 and turned it into GHC200 million in not much more than five years. Think about it: if someone told you that your investment of GHC35,000 will grow to GHC200 million in five years, would you believe it? Well, Nii Kotei Dzani did it. You can too.

My friends, if you’re reading this story and thinking, “yeah, he probably had help from someone” or, “yeah, his circumstances are different from mine” then you’re not going to make it, my friend. But if you’re reading this and thinking, “wow. If he can, I can”, then guess what: you can.

Dr Dzani is one of us. He is just like you. He turned nothing into something. So can you.

My name is Kojo Yankson, and I’m inspired to do great things, because they’ve been done by people just like me.