Why is it so difficult for hardworking people to become rich? What was right yesterday may be wrong today and what is right today could be wrong tomorrow.
The shift in ages is one of the major reasons why hardworking people today are not rich, after all, we work so hard to get rich and create wealth.
The rule of wealth flows with the 80/20 rule originated by Italian economist – Vilfredo Pareto in 1897 (this rule is also known as the Principle of Least Effort which holds that 80% of our success comes from 20% of the people).
When it comes to wealth and money, 20% of the people make 80% of the money in a given society or country.
How The Rules of Wealth Changed
This article aims to highlight the features of three ages and how the shift from one age to another also meant a great change in the way people can create wealth.
Agrarian Age (1st Wave Economy)
During this period (years back around 800 BC to middle of 18th Century AD), the concerns of people and organizations was how to extract maximum yield from land and other natural resources.
The rich were those who owned a castle that overlooked large tracks of fertile agricultural land. These rich people were known as Monarchs and the nobles. If you were not born into this group, you were an outsider with very little chance of becoming an insider.
The 80/20 rule controlled life. Therefore, 20% of people in the agrarian age who were in power were there by virtue of marriage, birth or conquest, the other 80% were serfs or peasants who worked the land but owned nothing.
During the agrarian age, if you were a good and hardworking person, you were respected; the idea of being diligent was handed down from parent to children. The idea of working for people (the rich) became popular and was now handed down from generation to generation. Gradually, we the industrial age set in.
Industrial Age (2nd Wave Economy)
What’s of great importance to people in the industrial age was how to achieve the highest physical output through secondary processes. Preferred resources were machineries, plants, specialist workers and physical infrastructures. The economy dominated from late 18th Century to late 20th Century.
Wealth shifted from agricultural land to real estate. Improvements such as buildings, factories, warehouses, mines and residential home for workers were placed on top of the land.
But, something Interesting Happened
Suddenly, rich fertile agricultural land dropped in value because the wealth shifted to owners of buildings upon the land (you should see where I’m going with this – “people who owned buildings on top of the land and not the land owners were the rich people, which means creating or building something was more of value and is still of value today).
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Buildings such as factories, skyscrapers and the land on which they were built (contained resources such as Iron and Copper) fueled industrial age.
When the shift in ages occurred, many farmers net worth went down. To maintain their standard of living, they had to work harder and farm more lands than before.
The “Go to school” idea became popular. It was during this industrial age that this school idea became so popular.
If you lived in the industrial age, you went to school, got that one job for life, worked your way up the corporate ladder or up the union ladder and when you retired, the company or government took care of your needs.
In the industrial age, those not of noble birth could become rich and powerful, entrepreneurs started with nothing and became billionaires (employing people who went to school to specialize in a particular skill).
In the industrial age the 80/20 rule still applied, but this time, becoming part of the 20% that owned 90% of the wealth wasn’t determined by birth or marriage but by determination. Still, joining the 20% elite was difficult.
For example, to start an automobile company in the industrial age is still capital intensive (lots of money, land and many formally educated people to build the company). Gradually, it was time for the information age.
Information Age (3rd Wave Economy) – The game changer
The 80/20 rule of least effort changed with the advent of the internet and World Wide Web. Also, the access or opportunity to join the elite 20% has changed.
The internet changed what it costs to join the 20% elite in every economy. Today, it does not take being born into a royal family as it did in the agrarian age.
It does not require massive sums of money, land and people to join the 20%. The price paid to be become part of the 20% rich in the information age is an IDEA.
Remember Mark Zuckerbag? He created a platform, a hub that people now refer to as another continent. He is worth billions of dollars.
Can you remember Crazy Clown? He started with an idea of posting funny videos on Instagram, he was consistent and now, he is an ambassador of Naira bet.
Can you remember the recent happening in Nigeria where people got into wealth from having nothing? Remember Jumoke Orisaguna? It was in this information age she came into wealth just by likes and tweets people in TY Bello’s shots.
Can you remember Falz? He studied law but with just a single video on Instagram, he became so popular with a tweak in the way he speaks.
In the information age anyone can become popular or known what for what he or she does. Someone once said that crazy people will rule the world. Just come up with an idea and the cost to execute that idea is not as huge as what it took in the industrial age.
The question is; what brilliant, creative and unique idea have you got?
For the first time in history, the 80%20 rule to wealth may no longer apply.
- No longer does it take money to make money,
- No longer does it take vast tracts of lands, or resources to become rich,
- No longer does it matter if you have a poor background,
- No longer does it matter if your family were rich.
- It does not matter what university you went to, or what sex, race or religion you’re part of.
All it takes is an IDEA and ideas are money. All you need to do is change old ideas, develop passion for that idea, build it and you’ll find yourself on the path to financial freedom.
Once again, The question is; what brilliant, creative and unique idea have you got?