As an individual we all have targets and set goals in our finances, hence adequate information to the right investment is very important. Considering the fact that good investments help us to actualize our objectives in our education, career, capital projects, family needs, etc, then it’s imperative for us to understand these investments.
Presently, we are faced with the recovery of the economy after experiencing the global economic meltdown for more than two years of economic impasse. In most African countries, especially Nigeria do not seem to get on a good start as the government has limited funds to inject into the economy (Capital market) unlike other developed nations of the world are currently doing. Therefore, there’s a need for us to make the right decision at this trying period. There are different types of Investments available to us; Savings, Insurance, Bonds, Equities and Stocks, FOREX, Real Estates, Importation and Exportation, and what have you. These may sound interesting, but we must look before we make decisions in our chosen investments.
For most people, making the right investment decision can be a tough one. They assume that you need enough money to venture into a lucrative business. It is always a good idea to do some research before you can make a decision as to what you want to invest in. This is better achieved the most when you gather information on your type of investment because you want to make the right investments that would work best for you. It is financially wise for you to know the investment basics so that you will be in a position to have variety of choices. Is this where the use of funds comes in? It is advisable that you use your savings especially if you plan to invest in long term. Moreover, you do not need a lot to get into investing though; you can use your monthly savings and investing consistently. The Stocks and shares option is one of the most popular and profitable business.
Also investing in Insurance policy is another guaranteed way of investing without having fear for drop in market price. Unlike the stock market, Insurance is a sure way of getting your money back with a certain accumulated interest over a stipulated period of time that is if there have not been any occurrences before the maturity date. This however, would be discussed exclusively in my subsequent articles.The mutual fund investment option is yet another form of investing whereby organizations collect money from different individuals and use it to venture into suitable quoted company stock at the right time.This reduces your risk of losing money since you are not directly investing in the stock market. You should look out for all loop holes and engage the services of a financial expert to help you make suitable investment choices.
Before we delve into the various investments stated above properly, there is a need to highlight the basic Principles of Investments that would be our guide to a successful venture. I shall discuss 5 of these proven principles that would guide us through;
The first investment principle we must know is to get the foundation right of any investments plan and all the hiccups we envisaged or encountered would be checked. The problem most people have is that they try to solve their challenges from the surface. It is easy for one to quickly take a pain relieving tablets to stop his toothache problems without knowing the cause. Alright let’s look at our business transactions as an instance. A growing businessman borrows money from his fellow business men to build his business venture. By doing this overtime he became heavily indebted. But in order to be free from his indebtedness, he quickly pays his debts without ever considering the fact that his greatest weakness could be poor financial (money) management. In Nigeria today, an average 60 percent of the population are into entrepreneurship in one business or the other yet most of them have little idea of their venture which accounts for low returns in profit every quarter. This dismay performance could only be attributed to their poor knowledge of the said business, hence the business foundation is lacking. In addressing such situations, understanding the roots of these investments
would place us on the driver’s sit to know where and how to make great returns on our investments
The second principle simply tells us to set values in our investments’ plan and life goals generally as a yard stick to take us to our desired expectations. Values are internal anchors we set ahead of time to guide us in time of decisions making. It is also important to note that in our individual offices and business places, values we set for ourselves would determine the future and success of our careers and business ventures. According to Hamel, G. in “Rethinking the basis for Competition” in (Gibson, R (ed) Re-thinking The Future, Nicholas Brealey Publishing, London pp. 76-92 he says that “the big challenge in creating the future is not predicting the future. Instead, the goal is to try to imagine a future that is plausible – a future that you create based on values.” As matter of fact, we must place great values on our investments and businesses for it to grow beyond limits.
On the third principles of investments, we must draw out our investments plans and strategy. One does not expect a high dividend as a return on your investments from a quoted company if you don’t invest well on that company. In any investment we do, there is need to know the strategy to adopt in getting good returns. Let’s look at the stock market for instance, you would not be foolish to invest in First Bank PLC in the Nigerian Stock Exchange that has reached its’ bullish state when you know most investors are bailing out after a period of planting then smiling to the banks for a good investment. You have to understand the investment first (foundation) then adopt a particular plan or strategy that would suit it for a stipulated period. That is why; Sun Tzu, great author, posits that “the General who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought while the General who losses make but few calculations beforehand”. You should know that whatever plans or strategy you make does not really guarantee you success as it may not suit the kind of investments you are into but get the right information to guide you through. Hence, you are advised to invest in financial books, business tips or any investment instruments to put you ahead of your contemporaries. By doing this, you must have drawn an investment philosophy that includes your; aim, period, returns and interest of your investments.
The fourth Principles would centre on our spiritual strength in business. Knowing that sometimes we face all sorts of problems and setbacks in our investments or business activities, we may not have the physical power to overcome them. To be realistic, we need to look up to God by committing our businesses in His hands irrespective of our religion or faith. According to the Book of Proverbs; “If God can see everything in the world of the dead, he can also see in our hearts.” If we commit our ways to God, He would direct our paths. We should always seek Him when faced with any problems. I also suggest you renew your minds with great spiritual and inspirational materials. Great authors like; T.D. Jakes, John Mason, Joyce Meryce, Mathew Ashimolowo, Dale Carnegie, etc have wonderful works that can nourish our soul and make us achievers even in the face of adversity. You would find out that what you consider as problems are not problems, but some stumbling blocks you encountered as challenges to your road to success.
The last Principles of investments which is the fifth, has to do with you as an individual. As a child while growing up, we all aspired to be one great professional in our chosen field. That’s the reason why Education could be adjudged as the highest form of investment. I must say that that most professionals or CEOs these days don’t utilize five percent of their brain. With the latest technologies at our finger tips, we seldom use our brain to work even getting the least calculations. Knowledge they say is power. The more knowledge we acquire, the more resourceful we become in affecting our lives positively. We have to invest in ourselves to improve on our business ideas and skills as change is inevitable. To buttress this point, let’s look at Romans 12:2; “and be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect will of God”. Please make it a habit to invest huge part of your income on your brain and mind, as it’s such an investment that you would receive a 100% returns.