What entrepreneurs need for success
BUSINESS| Dec. 18, 2010, 9:21 a.m.
Enablis, an international non-profit support organisation to support entrepreneurs in the developing world, says there are several key success factors when starting a business.
In a statement at the launch of the Accenture-Enablis Business Launchpad Competition in South Africa, Victor Mzimela, Country Manager of Enablis SA, explained that with as much as 30% of a country's GDP dependent on the small business market, this is not an area that should be taken for granted.
When looking at what is required to succeed in their chosen markets, Mzimela believes there are critical skills every entrepreneur needs, beyond those specific to their areas of business.
“ It’ s a scary thing to move away from a regular job to start and run your own business,” he states. “ If you are to succeed, the following qualities are central to success in all industries.”
Perception: The entrepreneur must be able to read and understand his or her chosen market and provide the products or services that meet the needs of potential customers.
Value: It follows that by understanding the requirements of customers, the entrepreneur can only succeed when he or she manages to add value to the market through the products and services on offer. Adding measurable value is critical to success.
Flexibility: Entrepreneurs must be able to adapt to meet the ever-changing needs of their markets.
Sales skills: Entrepreneurs must be able to read a market and differentiate the products and services they offer. If you are not aggressive in business your product or service will not be able to hold its own against your competitors and will probably die, along with your business.
Negotiation skills: You need to do more than sell to customers, says Mzimela. You need to sell to financiers to persuade them to invest in your company and you need to sell yourself to your customers, suppliers and employees.
Financial knowhow: While the entrepreneur does not need to be an accountant, you do need to understand financial and business management to be able to run your company effectively and develop a workable pricing strategy.
Time management: It is also imperative to manage your time properly in order to plan your days and ensure you deliver what you promise on time and to the expected quality.
Consistency: Entrepreneurs must also be consistent in what they deliver. You cannot produce excellent quality today and then relax and produce rubbish tomorrow. Mzimela adds that entrepreneurs also need to be working consistently on improving their products and services to ensure that they stay ahead of the competition.
Enablis currently has over 1 000 entrepreneurs as members in South Africa, Mozambique, Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana and Rwanda. It provides a range of support services, including mentorship, helping members find affordable access to resources and capital and giving members the means and tools to share experiences among themselves.
Enablis also assists entrepreneurs in capacity building, identifying areas in which they need improvement and then recommending workshops and training courses for them to attend.
MORE BUSINESS NEWS
Revenues from tablet games to tripleNew data from Juniper Research has revealed that by 2019 worldwide revenues from tablet games will reach $13.3 billion – a threefold rise on the 2014 figure of $3.6 billion. Read More
Airtel Uganda hosts high value customers at Business Leaders’ ForumAirtel Uganda has hosted an Enterprise Expo in Mbarara district, Western Uganda, as part of efforts to provide practical and modern business solutions to its high value customers. Read More
Safaricom, Airtel complete yuMobile dealSafaricom and Airtel have completed the US$120 million acquisition of yuMobile from Essar Telecom. Read More
GrowthAfrica, Usahibu partner to solve SME accounting issuesKenyan accelerator GrowthAfrica has partnered cloud computing firm Uhasibu in a bid to address the accounting and financial software needs of East African startups and small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Read More
Top 10 risks worth considering when expanding into AfricaCompanies planning to expand across Africa must make a concerted effort to understand the risks, and not assume they “know” Africa, says ContinuitySA. Read More
Shop Soko connects Kenyan artisans to lucrative international marketsA new e-commerce platform, Shop Soko, is helping Kenyans access a lucrative international market. Read More
Ricoh SA begins rollout of new services-led strategy, Africa expansionJacques van Wyk has been appointed Ricoh SA’s new COO to drive the expanded strategy that will enable the business to become a services-led organisation and see its expansion into the rest of Africa. Read More
Stock Exchange launches news serviceA news service by the name of X-News has become the latest product coming from the local bourse, the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) recently. Read More
Telkom forays into Botswana through acquisitionSouth African telecommunications giant Telkom is making inroads into the Botswana market through the acquisition of an ICT company, Business Connexion (BCX). Read More
Umati Capital secures $10m finance line from ApexPeakKenyan financial tech startup Umati Capital has agreed a deal with ApexPeak securing its first line of wholesale capital. Read More
FEATURED STORYSafaricom-Equity battle for mobile banking hots up
Equity bank's entry to the mobile banking and telephony industry is still hanging in the balance with London-based global association of mobile operators (GSMA) calling for independent audit.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture
In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.