International Business Machine, a strong name in computer and digital technology, has on the doors in their offices this striking line: “THINK. THINK. THINK.” Just a glance at it will reveal that we’ve one word – “Think” – repeated three times, and with a full stop marking off each and every one of them. You can trust that those words are not just there for the mere sake of having something on the door. No. It is their corporate philosophy, and inscribing it on doors is their way of selling the message to employees and customers alike. It is important to immediately state that every one of the three ‘thinks’ brings something new to the table. The apparent repetition carries the dual meanings of “emphasis” and “intensity.” By asking us to think thrice, they say that thinking is everything on the one hand, and they request us to think harder when we think again and rethink our thinking on the other hand. And so, IBM says it all: “Think. Think. Think.”

There is no gainsaying that it is rationality, which is our ability to reason/think, that makes us different from all other animals. French philosopher René Descartes even has it that thinking is the basis of the individual human existence: “I think, therefore I exist.” Yes, thinking has been, and remains, humanity’s best ally. We “thought” our way out of the Stone Age, and through the various ages of human civilization to this Information and Technology Age. In fact, thinking is, and remains, at the heart of science, arts, and the humanities. When we’re threatened by a situation, as an individual or a group, we think our way through and out of it. Leprosy, HIV/AIDS and Ebola know what I’m talking about.

I dare to announce that the multifacets of life can be meaningfully, effectively and efficiently related with through thinking. And employment status is not an exception. Now that unemployment rears its ugly head on our teeming youths in general, and graduates in particular, thinking is capable of rescuing the precarious situation. For want of thinking, that sort of IBM’s thinking, quality thinking I mean, many have cowardly embraced their fate, and are wallowing in poverty for that. Some others, for want of thinking, too, have taken to the blame game, blaming the government, economy, employees, parents, school system, and all blamables. But we know for a fact that the blame game is only good at shifting responsibility, such that the blamer ends up feeling good about him/herself after having transferred liability.

For want of thinking, others begin to pile up tonnes of excuses, dishing out, as it were, a thousand and one reasons why they’ve done little or nothing. A number of the award-winning excuses include: lack of startup capital, unfavorable government policies, hostile business climate, bad transport and power sector, big businesses wielding unfair advantage over startups, field of study been saturated, issue of unemployment, etc. Of course, the problem with excuses is that a million and one of them are capable of changing nothing.

However, a decision to take the IBM’s thinking route, to think again and to give the dominant thought a rethink, will deal a below-the-belt-blow to unemployment. What if we decide that we and we alone own our lives, and as such bear 100% responsibility for our lot? What if we choose to think about the fact that we come from the same country and share similar collective fate with the richest black man on the planet – Aliko Dangote? What if we think that almost next to everything has got economic value and can metamorphose into a viable and thriving business – sand, water, food, sticks, fruits, etc.? Does it even matter if the job is white collar, blue collar or pink collar, provided it can put food on our table? Have we thought of what practical relevance our courses of study can be of, what social problem it can solve or what need it can meet?

This is the point: Let’s think our way out of each and every situation we find ourselves. And try to use the IBM-model of thinking. Plus, we owe ourselves a job if we’re still unemployed.


  1. Nice write up. But then how do people who have thoughtout plans implement when they genuinely lack funds? They have no relations to run to, and no collateral to borrow from the bank.


    • Trust that thinking can deal with that. Like start small. Some people started from selling pure water, you know. And the cost of this start up is less than N100. lol!

      And then faithfulness in little things make for greatness. Thanks for being here Mrs Ijioma


  2. I am in complete agreement with you Cornelius,for our strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strength. When we go through hardships and decide not to give up, that is thinking, rethinking and thinking again and again with actions as follow up from the thought zone and that is strength.

    This is a bust stop for unemployed…. Thanks Cornel!!


  3. Thinking has a positive correlation with strong will. People who have strong will (never give up spirit) always think out alternative ways to succeed. I know for sure that determination to succeed no matter the odds opens up our thinking and creative faculty. Thanks Cornel for this wonderful exposition.


  4. I agree totally with U, Great Cornel dat We have to put into work our God given Capabilities, Talents, Skills, Knowledge & Potentials in Order 2 put an End 2 d monster of unemployment


  5. no doubt this piece is as instructive as i expected it to be. a big up to that. though, i seem to notice a but to it. And it does not in anyway detract from its message.

    in my thinking, i believe we need to be talking about doers and not thinkers per se;people think every day on how to better their lots. And so I’ve come to conclude that there is a thick line between thinking and doing. no time to elaborate but you will agree with me that doers make the world what it is today. Nigeria ,will be a better place if one tenth of us do what we are able to think out.

    thinking is essential, in fact,it is the brainchild of any acheivement,but we need to learn to give our thoughts a practical undertone. and again in other to be doers there is need for an enabling environment ;at least someone has to create it. and of course that person must be a doer too. that’s why i disagree with your statement,” What if we choose to think about the
    fact that we come from the same country and share similar
    collective fate with the richest black man on the planet – Aliko
    Dangote? “. the truth is we dont. our environment is more favourable to some. and that account for why most thinking halt at thought stage -giving us more reason to move pass thinking to doing.

    If i have been able (in terms of capacity )to do half of what i critical ly think about, i wont be where i am today.


  6. Nice wrire up Cornel, A full grown healthy man think every time but I think it all depends on ones “strength of will power ” to put it into action (which is the main thing ).things that he have been thinking . And please I would like u to throw more light on ‘quality thinking ‘


    • ‘Quality thinking’ is what IBM says: “Think. Think. Think.” Call it intensive thinking if you like. That sort of thinking, not worries, where someone can spend an entire day looking at all the ramifications of the subject of thought.

      That sort of thinking that even goes for research & feasibility study if need be. Reading the works of Aristotle & Aquinas would reveal what I mean. You will see that they thought virtually everything through.


  7. A great write up. it wz genius bringing philosophical insight on as practical problem solving tool. And yes,thinking works!


  8. I think you’re on point, Cornel. After all, necessity, it is said, is the mother of invention/creativity.

    In the face of a challenging situation such as unemployment, ours, as “rational/thinking animals”, is to create an honest way out. And this creation is inevitably preceded by a creative thought or “thinking”.

    “Thinking” is so important that, as humans, we cannot do without it. Little wonder it became a god for Descartes, for he believes that nothing exists unless it passes first through his thought/thinking – that was his limitation, anyway. ”

    Quality Thinking” is capable of taking us out if unemployment, I agree with you. Thinking is a wonderful gift from God for which we must always be grateful!


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