This is the third episode of Nigeria’s FIRST EVER REAL ESTATE FICTION SERIES. This series portrays the day-to-day issues faced in real estate situations by Landlords and their tenants, estate agents and their customers, and land sale issues. All these situations will be shared through the eye of OGA MARTINS. This is a series that not only entertains you, but gives you some basic information of what obtains in the real estate sector. So make sure to keep a date every week with OGA MARTINS and his BROUHAHA as it will make you appreciate real estate practitioners and their constant effort to help you achieve your housing goal.
Special thanks to REALTY POINT LIMITED (The #SackYourLandlord people) A real estate development and consultant company with a huge passion for turning tenants into landlords, who have brought this series your way.
Enough of the story, let’s get on with OGA MARTINS’ BROUHAHA…
Read previous episodes by clicking HERE
His first day at work wasn’t going the way he planned!
Nothing about the day was.
First, he’d had to deal with his troublesome neighbors and had ended up doing rub and shine just so he could make it to the office on time. Unfortunately, the early morning traffic characteristic of the Lagos metropolis had decided to frustrate his efforts. On getting to the office, his boss was a no-nonsense, get-the-work-done and don’t-give-me-excuses kind of woman who did not tolerate lateness and as if the universe had not dealt with him enough, he’d made the stupid mistake of dozing off just before the departmental meeting.
He had woken up from his slumber by sharp consistent slaps to his thighs. He wondered how long he slept as he jerked awake and looked into the faces of his colleagues who were amused by him. The only person who wasn’t smiling or trying to control herself from laughing out loud was Ada. She stared at him with such stern and disapproving look, he felt like a school boy who was being reprimanded by his teacher and lowered his head in shame
“Give me one reason why you should not be fired!” Ada demanded, even though she knew the question was rhetoric.
Martins looked up sharply, fear in his eyes. “I’m sorry ma. I didn’t…. I just….” He trailed off, knowing there was no point in explaining himself. Whatever he said would be termed an excuse. Instead, he said, “I’m sorry,” an apologetic look on his face.
“You can’t be sorry for coming late to work on your first day, and still be sorry for sleeping on duty. What more should I expect you to be sorry for today?” Ada was visibly irritated. “I am so moved to send you back to where you came from…”
“Please don’t send me back” Martins retorted quickly, begging like a drowning man grabbing anything in sight. “I promise to be committed on the job and make you proud”
After a while of a prolonged and uneasy silence, Ada finally spoke. “You will be given a chance to redeem yourself. You will have to visit a client’s office today and close this deal” Ada said, handing some papers and a file to him.
“…and don’t sleep in a client’s office, it’s unprofessional.”
He didn’t know she was going to send him to the field on his first day at work.
Martins sighed as he looked around once again at the richly furnished reception, impressed. There were comfortable sofas that made you forget you were there on business, lovely artworks that lined the wall and gave the impression you were at a gallery exhibition, a glass table that held various magazines ranging from fashion to business and the beautifully carved receptionist desk that stood in a corner, unobtrusive. The place reeked of money and opulence and for the umpteenth time, he wondered why Ada had asked him to close this deal. His first day at work and he was handed a big shot client such as this. Martins stood affixed to a point, staring at her in surprise.
“Any problem? You can’t handle it” she asked, her expression unreadable. For a woman, she knew how to keep her face devoid of emotion. The only thing that gave her away was the inflexion in her voice.
“I’m just surprised, that’s all,” he responded, his tone slightly defensive.
“Why? Is this not why you were employed? To sell our products?”
“Then what is the issue?”
Nothing was the issue; he was just surprised he was going through all these on the first day. He expected he should be given time to acclimatize and get familiar with the products so he could know the angle with which to sell to his prospective clients before being sent out. He held her gaze for a moment before responding
“I’m not familiar with the products.”
“I’ll brief you.”
And within a few minutes, she did; passionately and in details. He had to give it to her, the girl was good! If he had the cash, he would have dropped it immediately, which made him wonder what the catch was when she told him she was giving him one of her clients and expected him to close the deal.
Without further queries, Martins headed for a client’s office on his first day. This was more than work, it was a condition. He either seals this deal or lose his job even before settling down to it. He felt life was cruel to him to have him encounter someone like Ada after such a long time searching for a job around Lagos. He decided not to dwell too much on the negative side, but he believed it would be a big plus to him and his confidence if he managed to seal the deal. He would have something to brag about at Realty Point Limited.
He sighed as he glanced at his wristwatch. It was 2p.m. He had been sitting down for over four hours and had still not seen the mystery client. He had only spoken to the client’s PA who told him he was in a series of meeting and it was up to him to decide whether to stay or go. Ada had called him twice to get update and insisted he stay.
Martins was beginning to feel Ada was punishing him for coming late, and maybe there was no client after all. He resolved to wait till 4p.m before calling Ada for further instructions. In order to pass time, he picked one of the magazines on the table with a bored look on his face.
As he flipped through the pages, the words became a blur as his mind went to the task at hand: how was he going to convince the owner of the establishment to buy one of their prime estates in Abuja. Judging from his environment, it was obvious the man could afford it. He didn’t need the monthly installment payment offered to clients who couldn’t afford to pay one off but he obviously needed convincing and if Ada couldn’t do it, how was he? To make matters worse, she had hinged this daunting task on his job. He was still pondering on this when he heard a female voice.
“Where is Stanley? Ask him to get the car.”
He knew that voice! He turned his head to look at the woman that just spoke but her back was turned to him. A small frown furrowed his brows as a name promptly jumped to his head and slid out his lips.
“Aisha!” She turned instantly and Martins chuckled in surprise, a disbelieving look on his face as he got to his feet. “Long time no see.”
Aisha gave him an amused smile as she walked up to him. “What are you doing here?”
“I came to see the MD. You work here, right?”
“You came to see the MD? You are the guy from Realty Point; the one Ada sent?”
Martins gave her a quizzical look. “How do you know that?” Aisha gave him a look to show he should have it figured out by now. He had. “You’re the PA.”
Aisha was the last person Martins expected to see… it was turning out to be a day too much for him to handle.
The BROUHAHA of OGA MARTINS continues next week…