It is no secret that entrepreneurship is the key to stimulating economic development and growth in South Africa. In fact, small businesses are also a great source for job creation in smaller geographical areas and by employing local people, SMEs are able to better support their community and grow our economy. “Whilst all this is true, the very essence of entrepreneurship is that it provides business owners with the ability to support and sustain themselves and their family,” says Jacqueline Raw, Owner, and Founder of Ycagel, a Marketing consulting and services firm, and SkillX an online skills incubator for entrepreneurs and professionals.
She explains, “Most South Africans struggle to make ends meet every month. In fact, a 2019 study showed that 43% of us borrow money to get through the rest of the month after we run out. Add the woes of COVID and the subsequent lockdown, and the need for South Africans to make more money is greater than ever.”
Jacqui believes that entrepreneurship – whether full-time or part-time – offers the perfect opportunity to not only supplement incomes but change lives. But, where does one start?
Do yourself, your family, and your community a favour – believe in yourself and your dreams and start your business today!
She offers 5 Tips for aspiring Entrepreneurs:
1. Don't overthink it: More businesses fail to launch due to overthinking than those that actually fail after going live! Don't fall into this trap. No matter where you are, what you want to get started, the biggest gift you can give yourself is the gift of STARTING. Get out of your head and get going!
2. Create a feedback loop: The quicker you launch, the more basic your product or service will be. That's okay. Make sure you create a feedback loop that allows you to hear what your customers are saying, then implement their feedback into your product or service design so you keep getting better.
3. Keep experimenting until you get it right: The more you experiment with new products and services, the more likely you are to hit the nail on the head at some point. Don't be afraid of experimenting with new things which you think might add value to your customers. They are likely to love your commitment to finding a solution that meets their needs and wants.
4. Surround yourself with high-impact people: This is harder than the other tips to implement because sometimes we just don't have the luxury of high-impact people in proximity to us. If you do, seek them out on purpose and make sure you saturate yourself in their thinking. If not, find the best people online, follow them, study them and never stop!
5. Remain a student: The second you think you know what you're doing and don't have any more to learn is the second you're going to fall flat on your face. The world is too 'always-on' with new thinking and strategies emerging by the minute for any of us to think that there isn't more to learn. Keep growing!
“Do yourself, your family, and your community a favour – believe in yourself and your dreams and start your business today!” Jacqui concludes.