‘The concept of appointment setting and performance-based marketing started from a thorough six-month long research project focused on what there was a need for, and where the market was underserved or not served adequately. It was the only need that made sense to target based on our research no matter how we debated it.’ These are the words of Philip Gimmi, CEO and co-founder of Fatality, as he described how their business came to be.
Shortly after Fatality got started, Jared Koning came in to take over many of the processes and help the business reach the next level. Since then, the company has grown into a thriving business specializing in lead harvesting and appointment setting, with a staff of nine employees.
The road to this point has involved challenges though, the three biggest being a despondent market, capital, and finding the right staff. Gimmi elaborates: ‘When we started out, many people felt used and abused by bad appointment setting companies. They had had enough, so we had to over come this. As for capital, we don’t believe in investing a lot of our own funds without proof of concept. We made up for this with good old fashioned hard work and honest business. Finally, hiring the right people has been, and continues to be, the biggest challenge as it’s easier to lead with the right people in the right positions. We believe it’s smart to hire friends and family – people you can trust. This applies to everyone working at our company. Our company culture comes first, being a good person is more important than three degrees and 20 years of experience.’
When asked what makes a good entrepreneur, Gimmi provided much valuable insight: ‘This is a tough question but I would say leadership is the most important thing as an organization can only grow as large as the level of leadership within that said organization. This is commonly known as the ‘law of the lid’. Leadership is a verb, it is something you do each day, it’s a daily discipline. It is not a title, and it is independent from management.’
‘Other aspects that matter are the ability to act on opportunities and effectively manage resources. Too many business owners think being cost effective means saving money. This is incorrect. Often it means that you need to make sure the money you spend is used most effectively towards the end result of the organization. This often requires you to spend more on the right things.’
‘The last point I will touch on is the ability to build trust. Nothing is faster than the speed of trust. I have worked with businesses with staff wasting more time on covering themselves with laborious admin processes over building momentum and trust. If you make a mistake and the people trust you, they will forgive you. If you have a lapse in character, that will remain unforgotten and it’s very hard to come back from.’
As with so many leading South African entrepreneurs, Gimmi appreciates the value of small business in the South African economy. In supporting these businesses, his advice is: ‘Let competition and value guide your decision making muscles when it comes to making a purchase. Help South African businesses compete globally, help them enter new markets, support them with your money, time, and networks. Money is often not as valuable as a strong introduction, which may cost you nothing. There is nothing better than a free market. Small businesses must stop competing on price and start competing on value more. They (small businesses) undercut themselves too often, competing themselves out of the market. Most people will pay more if you offer a better experience or way to solve their problems. On these occasions price is only a factor in the absence of value. Rather add than subtract … add value!’
If you want to fill up your calendar, boost your sales and get smart data for smarter decision making, then see if the Fatality method will work for you. Visit their website and take their test, and one of their team members will contact you within 48 hours.
The Shop Small Movement and Small Business Friday is brought to you by the NSBC and encourages all South Africans to interact and support small business everyday; especially every Friday and even more so on Small Business Friday, the first Friday of Spring every year. This grows local communities, drives job creation and ultimately builds the nation. With your support small business will be able to employ more, therefore reducing rates of unemployment and harvesting the entrepreneurial spirit.