In this day and age, everyone seems to want to become the captain of the ship. Unfortunately, we have come across some “captains” who do not know how to steer the ship, and even worse, with no direction or sense of where they are heading.
We should applaud young Africans who are becoming entrepreneurs. However, some of these entrepreneurs are good, and have strategically thought through their field of work, and have taken on the role of leadership. The others are young Africans who decide to start a business, and are looking for the quick back. There is no interest in making a SWOT analysis or making SMART short-and long term goals. Infact, these individuals would not have a business plan. What they miss is that short-term minded goals result into short-term results.
Any African planning to start or run a business need to start thinking of strategic ways of making sure that their businesses last. And to do this you need atleast four things:
1. Business Plan
Every business needs a plan that is detailed. This means research on the market you are getting into. Including an analysis on investment and competition .
2. Marketing Plan
A plan with an in-depth Business analysis. No matter the business, marketing is ESSENTIAL! This needs to have SMART and SWOT analysis that looks at the business, rather than the market. In this world where Social Media is the rule rather than the exception, every marketing plans needs to in-corporate social media marketing.
3. Strong Network
There is a strong value in expanding your network no matter what the business entails. However, you have to be smart on who you include in this circle of networks. You need those who have gone before you, to be your advisors. *you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. You need role models, those you aspire to be, or those who have done so well in their respective industries. You need informants, and most importantly you need cheerleaders. Expand your horizon, don’t just focus on those in your industry- you will be surprised at what they can teach you.
4. A strong, and loyal team
You need to have a team that believes in your mission. But make sure that you know what you mission and goals are. Before you can ask someone else to believe in what you do, you need to exemplify leadership by believing in what you are doing. Trust- if you are not leading the team, and you start being everywhere, your team will notice, and will learn not cut their losses or take their gains and leave. However, if you have a team that believes in your business, make sure you hold on to them, because that means that there are to stay. Otherwise, you might end up with a business with a lot of goals, and plans with no one to make sure that they are carried out.