We all had those kids in school that covered their work so that we don’t copy. Some either used elbows or handkerchiefs. Strangely, these weren’t the brightest in class. Many failed.
Later in life, there are many that will never share any advice or help anyone. They hoard their ideas and go with them to their graves. One writer said the place with the most brilliant ideas isn’t a university or a library but a cemetery. How sad!
I aspire to die empty. I wish to die when I have shared all I know with whoever I meet because being not a so firm believer, I am not sure the ideas will be useful in the next life. Even if they were, I would be busy singing for the Lord with the angels.
Many refuse to share because they think their ideas are going to be stolen. How lazy! There are no new ideas. We simply adopt, tweak old ideas and maybe do them better. Also, in sharing, you get critiqued and learn. You perfect your own ideas. Also, there is the power of adjacency. When in Kampala, spare parts will be in Kisekka Market, hardware things will be in Shawuri Yako while vet supplies will be in Container Village. These industries were built by people that shared and allowed or were forced to accept their neighbours to come and do similar businesses. This builds an industry. This is good for everyone.
Once such people that aren’t afraid of getting people interested in their type of business is Amos Wakesa, the founder of Great Lakes Safaris and Uganda Lodges Limited. I remember when I sought an appointment to ask about tourism, Wekesa didn’t hesitate. He went on to paint for me the picture, told me the gaps, identified the challenges and pushed me to join. He was kind to even share figures and examples. I totally grew to respect him more because he is no coward. Recently, when UWA advertised concessions in the parks, he called and insisted I should give it a shot. “We need people like you in the sector“, Wekesa said. That was kind of him. See, most would never have cared to share information about a sector as most will think one is inviting competition. Truth be told, I do get it. But, so long as you have your head, you will think of new ideas and competition will only make you sharper. You lose nothing by sharing.
Those who know me know that I am always eager to share. Sometimes I think I overdo it while I am at a restaurant. I seek out the owner and share marketing tips. I will inbox to follow up on business proprietors I shared tips with. It’s challenging but rewarding. I even took off time to write a book ‘Treating Small Businesses: Lessons from My Operations’ sharing what I knew about business. I wish many other people can share freely. Maybe we will learn from their mistakes and reduce the great ideas rotting away in cemeteries.