Category Archives: Entrepreneurship

Do you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur?

So you think you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur? Sure, it’s great to be a leader and to make your own decisions. But do you have what it takes? There are many things for an aspiring entrepreneur to consider.

YE3BR41KSE (1)Creating a business takes a considerable financial investment, a lot of time and many, many hours of hard work. Your starting point is therefore to ask yourself if this is really something you can see yourself doing for the next years. As mentioned on entrepreneur.com, there is a big difference between wanting to be able to make a living doing something, and the actual chance it’s going to work out.

Follow the leader

Are you a leader or a follower? Are you comfortable directing a team of employees? It is very likely that you will be hiring staff at some point, even for a starting business. Keep in mind that leadership skills are a part of making it as an entrepreneur. Good leaders make good entrepreneurs.

Money matters

How do you manage your money? There are really only two options: either you make it through the initial stage and get to build on your investment, or you don’t, which will be the end of your business. An entrepreneur knows how to handle uncertainty, and knows finance through and through.

Do what you enjoy

Seek out your talents and let your interests decide where you will go with your business. It’s all about distinguishing yourself out there, and what better way to do so than by doing something that you love and know everything about?

Business time

Your business plan is your bible. A solid business plan takes into account and analyzes as many different situations as possible. This is where your keen insight and experience with corporate and finance come into play. Formulate your goals and most of all, how and when you are going to achieve them.

Know your customers

 Yes, the start-up of a new business is a hectic time. But the fact that your business is small scaled has its advantages. It allows you to get to know your customers, for example. In the corporate world, most customers are just some file on a computer. Work on a personal experience for your clients, they will be sure to appreciate it.

It’s all about creating a competitive advantage: something that makes you preferable over your many competitors.

Invest not only in your business, but in yourself

Keen entrepreneurs are always on the lookout for ways to improve themselves.  This means you should keep cultivating yourself, your talents, and your interests. In other words: go to conferences, take courses and read books on relevant topics.

The best advice to anyone that is an aspiring entrepreneur is arguably: ‘Know thyself.’ It takes certain skills to be an entrepreneur. Being honest to yourself about whether you possess these assets is the very first step on an exciting road to building up a business, or choosing a career path that better suits you.

 By Laura Macek, Journalism and Content Intern at Who’s Who

5 signs you’ll be a successful entrepreneur (and 10 quotes to match)

POB2Y8A2NUAre you meant to be your own boss? Are you meant to run a bunch of employees, lead them, strategise, and make important decisions? Before you say yes, do a little introspection and find out if you’re meant to be an entrepreneur.

  1. You know you work very hard

“Hard work does not necessarily guarantee success, but no success is possible without hard work.” – Dr T.P. Chia

If you prefer to skate by doing only the bare minimum like, then you should already throw in the towel immediately. Starting a business is easy. Growing a successful business takes a lot of work, dedication and perseverance.

“The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work.” – Harry Golden

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Business funding for South African entrepreneurs

Are you a budding entrepreneur wondering where you get capital to fund your business? Or is your business already existing and in need of capital injection? There are a great deal of institutions offering funding for entrepreneurs.

If you’re uncertain on which doors to knock on, why not start with these?

1. Business Partners Limited

Business Partners invests between R250 000 and R15 million in SMEs across all sectors, with the exception of farming, on-lending and non-profit organisations.

Investment financing is offered for businesses at all stages of development, including start-ups, expansions, outright purchases, management buy-outs, management buy-ins, franchises, tenders and contracts. The company also manages a number of specialist funds, which provide investment financing for defined-profile entrepreneurs.

Business Partners also has a range of support services for the entrepreneur. This includes property management consultants, mentors who are allocated according to the company’s needs and access to other expertise need to ensure the success of a business.

2. Commercial Banks

The commercial banks; ABSA, FNB, Nedbank and Standard Bank have specialist SME divisions, providing finance for qualifying entrepreneurs. Visit the banks’ websites to find out about their products and services, and their criteria to obtain finance.

3. Khula Enterprise Finance

Khula Department Finance Ltd is an agency of the Department of Trade and Industry established to facilitate access to finance for SMMEs. Khula provides assistance through various delivery channels, including commercial banks, retail financial intermediaries and micro credit outlets (MCOs).

Funds in partnership with Khula include:

  • Small Business Growth Trust Fund

This non-sector specific fund provides loans between R10 000 and R3million per portfolio entity with a repayment period not exceeding 5 years.

  • Izibulo SME Fund

The Izibulo SME Fund provides early-stage funding to SMEs and necessary infrastructural support and resources.

  • Identity Development Fund (IDF)

IDF is also a non-sector specific fund that aims to create  long-term growth from profitable portfolio investments in SMEs. It provides both debt and or equity funding (50%/50%). Repayment periods range between 3-5 years for start-up/early stage companies of R250 000 to R3million, emerging /MBO and expansion of R3million to R7.5million and R7.5million to R30million for community projects.

For more business-related advice, visit our Entrepreneurship page.