Crossing the Rubicon


The best way to start is to start.


According to the online Free Dictionary definition, Rubicon is a limit that when passed or exceeded permits of no return and typically results in irrevocable commitment. This is a point of no return. This maiden post is dedicated to rebels, misfits, underdogs and non-conformists. Adulation to those in pursuit of ideals greater than themselves. Once you cross the Rubicon, things are never quite the same. Here is to the Good Life. 


The legend of Julius Caesar
In 49 BC, Julius Caesar and his army crossed the Rubicon; a shallow river (rubico) in northeastern Italy, about 80 kilometres long, running from the Apennine Mountains to the Adriatic Sea through the southern Emilia-Romagna region, between the towns of Rimini and Cesena. The Latin word rubico comes from the adjective “rubeus”, meaning “red”. The river was so named because its waters are colored red by mud deposits. It was key to protecting Rome from civil war. This act was largely regarded as an act of defiance. The crossing of the rubicon was an insurrection by the Julius Caesar army because of his violation of imperium (the right to command). G. Julius Caesar led a single legion, Legio XIII Gemina, south over the Rubicon from Cisalpine Gaul to Italy to make his way to Rome. In doing so, he (deliberately) broke the law on imperium and made armed conflict inevitable. 
Hard knock life
Exercising imperium when forbidden by the law was a capital offence, punishable by death. Furthermore, obeying the commands of a general who did not legally possess imperium was also a capital offence. If a general entered Italy whilst exercising command of an army, both the general and his soldiers became outlaws and were automatically condemned to death. Generals were thus obliged to disband their armies before entering Italy. In many ways, crossing the Rubicon as in the case of Julius Caesar is not different from the hard knock life of a new start-up. Venturing into an existing territory to compete with established businesses is in a way an act of insurrection. 11 out of 12 new businesses fail under three years. The success rate of new product is less than 20% making it extremely discouraging for anyone in the right frame of mind to venture into business. The odds against a new business stack up very high and the chances of success is like unto a donkey passing through the eye of a needle. The realities are shimmering in no small measure.
The Die is cast
Proponents of the concept; trickle down economics suggest that no economy can be sustainable without the empowerment of the middle class. They opine that in other to be able to create momentum especially for the lower band of the society, the government should deploy its fiscal and monetary policies and tools towards in such a way that ensures that those at the middle and top echelon are stimulated to create jobs. The argument for job creation is an altruistic one but holds water. That Government will create all the jobs in an economy is largely unrealistic and dangerously socialist. So who then should create jobs? The answer to that is answered by small businesses. In America, the number of jobs created by small businesses dwarfs the contribution by Government. This realisation confers a deserving messianic status on small business owners. If we must create more jobs, we need more people to cross the rubicon. We need more people to take the plunge and in the famous words of Julius Caesar on 10th of January 49 BC declare “the die is cast”.The fate of our world depends on the valiant commitment of those who are willing to risk it all. In crossing the rubicon, you have to be willing to crash and burn. May God bless our hussle. 


Image Credit: Google


Femi Oni

Femi’s overarching purpose is to inspire brands (individuals, organisations and nations) to unlock potentials to achieve sustainable growth and impact. His mission is to mentor 1000 brands in Africa and beyond by 2025.

Specialties and Interests: Business Model Design & Innovation, Visioning, Strategy Design & Execution, Project Management, Change Management, Strategic Branding, Operations Excellence, Process Modelling, Product Management, Productivity Management, Entrepreneurial Leadership (Startups), , Social Evangelism, Education, Sustainability, Cybernetics, Risk & Compliance.