I was requested by Management Training and Advisory Centre MTAC to give a congratulatory message to the students of the 6th graduation and welcome them to the Hustle.
Entrepreneurs are not known for having a lot of time for reading long articles. You are
keen to get on with putting your business ideas into action. So my words to you today will be short.
Your graduation ceremony and the celebrations that accompany it will be over before you know it. Enjoy the parties, receive all the kind remarks and good wishes that are coming your way. Congratulations on making it this far. There are so many people who would have wanted to be where you are but for one reason or another, they are not.
Congratulations also for getting started on this exciting life of building businesses and
putting your ideas to work. You’re going to launch out with business plans, proposals, and presentations requesting for investment funding. I want to give you some words of advice which will apply to you regardless of the business that you start.
Your customer is the most important part of your business. You should never forget this.
Make it a habit to always know what your customer is thinking. Talk to customers, they will give you answers which your reports and bank statements can’t give you. Keep up a
constant dialogue with customers on social media and other platforms where they can give you feedback.
Recognizing who your customer is and what their needs are will guide your decisions on logos, marketing plans, even your business name. After all, you will not give your business a name that will alienate 80% of your target market, will you?
Secondly, your business is not going to be around for very long if you do not make money.
In order to make money, you have to sell your product. Talk about your business every opportunity you get. You will get more and more creative in how you do this as you grow
but make it a habit to talk about your business. Do not miss any opportunity.
My book, “I am not sorry for my mistakes” was written after I had been writing posts on
social media for some time. I told stories of my experiences building a business and soon, there was enough material to start me off on my book writing journey. Now, I use the book as a conversation starter when I meet someone for the first time. Inevitably, I am able to market my business every time I talk about my book.
There are many business that are registered in Uganda every year. In fact, Uganda is one of the most entrepreneurial countries in the world. However, many of these businesses don’t last beyond their 5th birthday. There are many reasons for this and many of them I highlight in the book, “I’m not sorry for my mistakes.”
One aspect of building a sustainable business that I want to highlight here is the need to focus your business activities.
When I started Hostalite, our plan was to offer web hosting , design and software development services.
As time went on, however, mainly because of the need for cash, we started to accept every opportunity that came our way. We soon realized that we were ending up
spending a lot of time working on projects that were not core to our primary business.
Two years ago, we decided to embark on developing software that we could sell as a service. We decided to focus on the Cinnamon Clubs investment clubs software. This software is designed to ease the administrative processes of investment clubs.
As a company, we made the decision to focus on building this part of our business at least for the foreseeable future. So, right now, that is our priority. We have learnt to say no to many other opportunities that sounded lucrative in order to concentrate on continuously improving this software for our clients.
The career path that you have chosen is exciting and promises great reward. But you have to remember that being an entrepreneur requires hard work in order for you to succeed.
Otherwise, many people would do it.
C.E.O| Hostalite Ltd