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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

My 5 lessons in young business

"Entrepreneurship is neither a science nor an art. It is a practice." Peter Drucker

No one ever promised us that getting into business was going to be easy. But from where we were sitting, my bestie and I had put it off for long enough, so getting off our butts was the only option left open to us. We were itching for more.

After a mere two years in business, I can say with absolute certainty that- ideas are easy, but implementation is hard. Here are my top 5 lessons learnt in business so far.

1. To work IN the business is not the same thing as working ON the business.
(This is a difficult lesson for most start ups to learn. As business owners there is a real danger in getting so busy with the day to day operations, that there is no time to work on strategies that will chart the overall direction of the business.)

2. Keeping it lean and clean, is not just a choice you get to make as owners. It is a matter of survival.

3. Have a business advisor or a mentor.
(Especially one with a knack for strategy, numbers and attention to detail. Things that we as creatives often think about as an after thought.)

4. Find ways to self motivate.
(The day to day running of the business will deplete you- mentally, emotionally and spiritually. As a result you will need to replenish your stores.)

5. If like my partner and I, you are in a 50/50 partnership and you also happen to be close friends, then you must know that your partnership is like a marriage. Simply put, it will require constant communication, constant work and if you are of the religious persuasion, constant prayer too. It is The most important element of your business. The better this relationship works, the better it is for your business...and of course for your sanity.

Year 2 has been fraught with potholes and detours. We danced to a tune neither of us was familiar with and we were stretched to the max. But we grew immensely and we also reached new depths in our knowledge of what it truly means to be business owners. Its been one heck of a year.

Thats all I will say for now.

If you haven't taken the leap yet, but have always wanted to- do it. And if you have no desire to pursue this course,that too is admirable. Here is to wishing you the courage to bring your vision to life. Whatever that vision may be! 😉

Saturday, 3 December 2016

#SistersWithBlisters



“Every case of a woman being abused is a case too many. Too many survivors continue to suffer in silence and it is our joint responsibility to do whatever possible to change this”

It's sad to read that South Africa has 1 of the highest rates of violence against women in the world. But it’s not enough to just lament this fact. So I decided to add my voice to the many others also saying No to violence against women!

On Saturday, the 26th of November the stage was set for the very popular #SisterswithBlisters protest walk at Monte Casino. Not only was Joburg weather positively showing off, with its clear blue skies and beguiling sunshine, but the occasion was also blessed with participants with lots of gees and personality.

Seeing as I am one of those people who are slightly adverse to hardcore, grueling manual exercise, I was a tad bit apprehensive about signing up for this 5km walk, but I am very glad to report that the day turned out to be a most pleasant surprise for both my walking partner and me. On arrival we were greeted by fantastic marshals, the walk was well organized and most importantly, we were thoroughly entertained by people we saw along the route- with their crazy costumes and of course the men in their 9inch stiletto heels and sequined, padded bras! The water stops were a hive of activity, and the screaming water volunteers, had us all in stitches. They were cheering everyone on so enthusiastically that even if you were considering not taking the water from them, you ended up doing it anyway just to get in on the fun. I also liked the ‘selfie-pitstops’- What a nice touch!

Besides the fact that the #SisterswithBlisters protest walk is a fantastic occasion to raise awareness against women and children abuse, it also presents a unique opportunity for men, women, children (and our dogs) to come together, walk as one and make our collective voices heard- and that’s more than enough for me.

One of the main things it does well to highlight is also the often hard, but very important work done by the 1st for Women Foundation in the fight for equality and protection for women and children. We know that violence against women and children is a social tragedy that transcends political, religious and economic boundaries- so it is encouraging to know that all the proceeds raised from the walk will be donated to two other organisations that make a practical difference to the lives of those affected by abuse.

This is a worthy cause, and was a truly memorable occasion to have been a part of. Kudos to 1st for Women Foundation and all the other partners, I will definitely be taking part in the walk again next year!

Check this out for more information on the work done by the 1st for Women Foundation
(https://goo.gl/RP7db5)