Some prefer to go it all on their own. Believing others would distract or slow them down.
by fiifi DZANSI
Why we don’t collaborate
In Senior Secondary School, I fell in love with butterflies. Their patterns, colours and the way they breezed delicately through the air, filled me with awe.
Butterflies inspired many of my designs, so much that I became the best in my Textiles Design class.
My sketchbooks were overflowing with nature-inspired designs. Soon, I phoned some of the big textile companies in Ghana with my ideas, hoping to contribute to their success.
All I heard from them was: “We have our in-house designers. Son, we don’t print what we’ve not designed.”
Later, I turned to Batik and tie-dye makers in the hood who embraced my ideas. Many of them sold more clothes with my designs than they previously did.
After college, a friend and I wrote movie scripts. We had some thrilling stories that kept us awake all night. These stories – when made well – could motivate people to do good.
With utter optimism and avidity, we approached several well-known Ghanaian directors and producers and actors with our scripts. Sadly, their response was the same all the time: “We don’t make movies we’ve not written ourselves.”
Disenchanted after several failed attempts, we laid our mammoth dreams to rest and shelved all the scripts we toiled so much to create.
Twelve political parties qualify to run in the upcoming 2020 general elections in Ghana. In actuality, though, the race is between only two parties. These are the only parties taking turns in governing Ghana since our democratic era.
All the other ten know very well they aren’t going to win. Never. These little parties blame the big two for squandering public funds and doing so little to improve lives.
You may feel that these ten little parties could combine resources to end the reign of the ‘big two’, implement their policies and move the nation forward.
There are thousands of different churches in Ghana. All of them believe to be serving the same God, preaching the same message and helping people find their way to heaven.
If their claims are legit, why don’t they do the work of the ‘Lord’ under a single name?
The outcome when we don’t collaborate
We want all the pie, not just some of it.
Our self-centeredness to get it all and receive all the praise is causing us to waste resources and produce mediocre results.
Some of the big textiles companies I contacted have collapsed over the years. Others are struggling in the face of cheap imports from China.
If they had it all figured out in-house, why did they collapse or are hassling for survival?
The Ghana movie industry is far behind Nollywood. Few movies come out of Ghana each year with great stories told badly and acted amateurishly.
From experience, all political parties have had the same goal, judging from what they’ve achieved; to keep Ghana as a third world country, always waiting for white intervention.
A ruling party may not accept a great idea from the opposition because they want to do it all by themselves and take credit for the results. Their goal is not to involve all citizens – regardless of their political affiliations- in creating a better world.
Wherever you go in Accra, someone is screaming in a loudhailer, preaching. A collection bowl perches by them. Put money in the bowl, and you receive prophetic blessings and appellations.
It’s about the business. Win more souls, organize frequent crusades and your collection bowls would be full.
If the work these preachers do, is changing lives for the better, Ghana would be up there with Singapore as one of the cleanest nations on earth. Or perhaps Ghana could replace Botswana as the least corrupt country on the continent.
As an entrepreneur or business owner, you don’t have all the answers. It requires humility to consider other ideas and directions.
Our ideas may have been ignored because we were not celebrities with massive social media following. Neither were we making TV and radio appearances uttering borrowed grandiose statements.
Great ideas can come from anyone, regardless of their level of education or social standing. So consider ideas from an open and unbiased perspective.
When you collaborate, you allow others to exhibit their abilities.