If I’m being honest, our Kenyan culture does not allow domestic prosperity and in this post, I will justify my assertion. If only we developed a culture to support each other in Kenya, we would be one of the most powerful countries in our continent. Don’t get me wrong. I understand that we are a force to reckon with especially where the military is concerned. However, when we come to other fields for instance the entertainment industry, that’s where Kenyans draw the line.
I was listening to music a few hours ago in the company of my lovely wife when I realized that upcoming artists from other countries have more subscribers and views (support) on YouTube compared to our legendary Kenyan artists/musicians. So, I asked my wife why she thought it was the case and her perception was pretty intriguing. The musician in question was a Nigerian so she outright thinks that while Kenya has a population of fewer than fifty million citizens, Nigeria has four times that population. She also mentioned that we (Kenyans) do not support our own. I’m Kenyan so I’m also to blame.
I mean, why was I listening to artists from different countries when we have domestic musicians with some dope hits? So, I sat there thinking about how our culture does not support domestic growth. And my thoughts drifted for close to thirty minutes while I contemplated this among other things. At least I’m no longer bitter or rather disappointed because of some major failures my fellow Kenyans have put out there in the open, myself included.
Let’s start with the recent arrest of Eric Omondi who led a protest close to the Kenya Parliament. For the past few months, he has been pushing an agenda to ensure we support our own. For instance, ensuring that Kenyan content is aired more in our local station and Kenyan artists are taken seriously in local concerts. This is a viable way of ensuring that Kenyans support their own when it comes to matters of entertainment. This is a slippery slope and to avoid being biased or saying something that hits the wrong notes, I will leave it at that. I’m sure we have read about the case and the outcome so….
My point or rather major concern is that we do not support our own and I believe that the little I said above justifies my assertion. This brings me to my experiences with my fellow country people. I have started several businesses over the years switching from service provision to product distribution. Most of these businesses have failed but I learned very important lessons.You see, when most of us start ventures we think that our closest circle will be our first customers. I can tell you for a fact that this is never the case. Probably some exceptions disagree with me especially if their friends and… Click To Tweet
You see, when most of us start ventures we think that our closest circle will be our first customers. I can tell you for a fact that this is never the case. Probably some exceptions disagree with me especially if their friends and colleagues from social circles or work support(ed) their businesses. But for most people, this is never the case. I can confirm that none of my friends ever made any purchase from my business. They were always prospective customers who never converted. The few sales I made before incurring losses and shutting them doors were from strangers.
At first, I was angry but who could blame me. I was young and naïve. I thought that one’s first customers were their friends but I later learned otherwise after a few years of learning and experiencing social engineering.
A few months ago, I bumped into an old friend from college. We exchanged a few words and decided to have coffee while we waited for rush hour traffic to subside. One of the issues that rose was taxation. The issue of taxation has been in the papers and on major media outlets for the past few months. I asked him what he thought about the pronounced crackdowns and formed task forces. He had so much to say but what stood out was the assertion that most citizens are unwilling to support the government.
These are our views but if one person thinks of this, it means that several people are thinking the same. Any citizen unwilling to support their mother country and therefore avoiding paying tax is on an elevated level of what each of us wants to call this topic. To most financiers, this is preposterous but most Kenyans might perceive tax evasion as being smart. We have different views but I encourage everyone to pay their taxes.
We are approaching the election period and I strongly believe that we are about to make another mistake. I watched this short video that addressed how most Kenyan citizens will choose to recycle problems by voting in the same ineffective leaders instead of electing new leaders. I mean, let’s face facts, I opt to stay out of politics but I have something to say today.
In my opinion, I believe that leaders are born and not made. As I mentioned earlier, I’m sharing my perceptions. We can all agree that there are capable leaders who stand no chance against incapable leaders. Unfair, right? Yet we (the citizens) hold the power but we are very likely to blindly vote in leaders who will not impact any significant changes in our community. We will be doing exactly what Albert Einstein called insanity, (doing the exact same thing over and over again expecting different results). Why can’t we decide to support fresh minds with new approaches? If they do not perform, we can always vote them out in the future.
These are just a few issues I thought about while my mind had drifted away as mentioned earlier. But they were enough to show me how much we fail to support each other. If we supported each other and stood together, we would accomplish so much. Probably more than we can even imagine.
This does not just apply to the communities in Kenya but other communities in various countries as wells. Each community has its own demons and I’m sure not supporting each other is tucked in one of their closets. Unless people need something or have something in common, they often don’t see the need to support each other or rather collaborate.
But we need to adopt the culture of supporting each other. Whether it’s the music or entertainment industry, we need to support our own. Otherwise, they will never be respected in foreign arenas unless we start supporting them locally. In terms of business, it wouldn’t hurt to support your friends or refer them to other people in your diverse circles. I have learned that we need each other and it only works if we work and support each other. So why not? Why not support your Kenyan people? What if we support each other in Kenya and we rise beyond levels you ever fathomed? What if?
What if we support each other in Kenya and we rise beyond levels we would ever have fathomed? Click To Tweet