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Fear is the biggest enemy of an entrepreneur

Discussion in 'Biashara, Uchumi na Ujasiriamali' started by Lunyungu, Dec 12, 2008.

  1. Lunyungu

    Lunyungu JF-Expert Member

    Dec 12, 2008
    Joined: Aug 7, 2006
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    Fear is the biggest enemy of an entrepreneur
    Dorothy Nakaweesi
    Many good business ideas that would turn into big corporations, employ people and contribute to economic growth never live long enough to see the light of day.
    This is especially true because those with the ideas fear to take risks even before they start.
    Fear is the biggest enemy for an entrepreneur. Every opportunity has inherent risks. It is a matter of understanding and weighing the business risks then the sky will be the limit.
    Recently Private Sector Foundation Uganda held its first every annual ‘Start your business plan’ completion in Kampala, where the guest speaker and Chairman of the East Africa Business (EABC) Council Mr Reginald Mengi shared his journey to success.
    Mengi, born in Machame, in the Kilimanjaro Region, in Northern Tanzania, shared the same mud hut with the goats and hens. He would struggle for one meal day, walked long distances to school bare footed because his parents could not afford to buy him shoes.
    To him, poverty was just a challenge.
    Mengi said; “In business one has to have that goal of thinking big but you have to start small. Think about lakes not fish bowls”.
    So was his first business venture of manufacturing ballpoint pens on a very small scale in his bedroom. He bought the pen parts and put them together. In one year he had made one billion Shillings worth of profit from the business.
    A pen is a common, small thing but it became the foundation of his conglomerate.
    A chartered accountant by training, Mengi created the IPP business conglomerate in the mid 1980s after serving as Chairman and Managing Partner of Coopers & Lybrand in Tanzania.
    IPP Group is one of the largest East African industrial groups. It consists of a Financial Consulting firm, soft drink bottling partnership with Coca Cola (Coca-Cola Kwanza, Bonite Bottlers and Kilimanjaro Spring Water).
    IPP Body care Ltd a soap, detergent and toothpaste manufacturer and IPP Media which is composed of 11 newspapers, 3 radio stations and 2 television channels, one which operates in Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda (IPP Media).
    Mengi says his success was always based on his zeal to venture into opportunities with his motto ‘I must, I can, I will’.
    Mengi’s long experience and success in doing business in Africa has taken him to participate in a large number of national and international business undertakings as well as taking an active interest in private sector development.
    To this effect, he has been a long-time advocate of promoting good governance in Africa as well as enhancing technical and managerial skills in the private sector, as key mechanisms for improving the business environment and attracting foreign direct investment to the continent.
    However, as a leading media tycoon, he has also called on the African press not to follow the international media’s inclination to portray only the negative aspects and constraints of doing business in Africa, since these only reinforce certain stereotypes and overshadow the business opportunities that exist in the continent and have a detrimental effect on potential foreign investors.
    As a leading member of the business community Mengi has served as Chairman of Tanzania’s National Board of Business Accountants and Auditors, of Tanzania’s Chapter of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), and of the Tanzanian Chapter of the Commonwealth Press Union (PCU).
    He has also participated in several fora organised under the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), met with various African and Latin American leaders and is a member of the Board of Management of the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC).
    Mengi’s principles for a successful business
    He says many people have failed in business because they give room for doubt.
    “Once you have a vision, commit to your goal and you will accomplish it. If you aspire to do something and you don’t really believe you can do it, you have failed before you getting started,” Mengi said.
    He says business commitment and competence should always take the first and second priority respective.
    He adds that its vital to put the highest price on yourself and your position.
    That is when one can start setting a value for themselves with those they are dealing with.
    He adds that money is a blessing and people should always find ways to say thank you to: God, customers and the community.
    “There is no such thing as individual happiness. If you see a man walking down the street alone laughing, you will say that he is crazy. If you see 2 or 3 people walking down the street laughing together, you will say that they are happy.”
    You need a destination in mind for yourself. People don’t usually know where they are going in their lives. Don’t go through life lost.
    Believing in yourself and your delegations. Delegate with trust. You also must build a sense of belonging in the people you have recruited.
    When you have make money, you need to remember to give back to the people. Remember to contribute to the community in which you live.
    Personal life
    In addition to his interests in business and industry, Mengi has been involved in a number of charities and other social activities, especially in the areas of health, environmental management and poverty alleviation.
    He has been a leading advocate of involving the private sector in the prevention and treatment of HIV/Aids, and was appointed member of Tanzania Commission for Aids (TACAIDS).
    Most recently, Mengi began building The Rodney Mutie Mengi Heart Institute in memory of his son who died on October 6, 2005 from heart complications. In the meantime he has begun sponsoring children in Tanzania with heart problems to travel abroad for treatment.
    In recognition of his work, leadership and contributions in a wide range of business and social activities Mengi has been awarded the Order of the United Republic of Tanzania, the Order of the Arusha Declaration of the First Class for his exemplary contribution to Tanzania’s development, The East African Environment Leadership Award, and the Environmentalist of the Century Award 2000 in the Kilimanjaro region.
    He was twice nominated the second most respected Chief Executive Officer in East Africa by PricewaterhouseCoopers (in 2001 and 2002)
  2. AbdulKensington

    AbdulKensington Member

    Dec 19, 2008
    Joined: Oct 21, 2008
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    Nice 1...thank you, I have learnt a lot from your post!