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Inspirational quotes to keep you going for the rest of 2019

Article provided by SME South Africa

Whether you are looking for new ideas, business strategies or a bit of motivation, SME South Africa has got you covered.

This year we have more than our fair share of South African entrepreneurs who have shared their secrets to success in both business and life.

Here are their inspirational quotes to propel the rest of your 2019.

On overcoming challenges

Do it despite the fear – “Everything in life is a risk: even being too fearful to do anything is a risk … maybe even the biggest one.” – Ike Cha, founder, chairman and CEO of investment company, Lionshare Venture Holdings

On days when you feel like a failure (and there will be many) – relentlessly persist

Just do it – “When everything looks like it’s failing, on days when you feel like a failure (and there will be many) and when all you can see are hurdles ahead of you – relentlessly persist. Do what others won’t do to achieve what others don’t.” – Natasha Alomia and Jon-Marc Carvalho, co-founders of Frost Popsicles, a company that manufactures a unique range of frozen alcohol popsicles

Don’t be afraid to start small – “One of the biggest challenges we’ve had – and I think all entrepreneurs have – is capital. Entrepreneurs need capital, that’s it. We overcame this challenge by starting small, starting with what we had and being true to our craft.” – Joe Human, creative entrepreneur and co-founder of Creative Mind Space, a digital agency

On the power of networks

Start with family and friends – “Your network is your most lucrative source of first customers because they already trust you … One of our first programmes was sold to a school where a friend and fellow teacher was employed, and they have been a loyal customer ever since.” – Lisa Illingworth, CEO and co-founder of Futureproof SA, a programme which provides children around Gauteng, Western Cape and KwaZulu Natal with entrepreneurial skills

Reach out – “If it was not for networking I wouldn’t be here right now. By that I mean, when I decided to start with the spices, the laws regulating the industry did not allow me to manufacture the spices without the proper documentation. It was through networking at the local gym that I met someone who had the right documentation to help me start my business.” – Mikie Monoketsi, founder of Mama’s Spices & Herbs

If it was not for networking I wouldn’t be here right now

Enjoy the benefits – “Networking widens your relational circle, therefore it’s invaluable. Relationships are platforms for doing business, leapfrogging your learning, sharing best practices, allows for customer interaction, and drives growth.” – Vumile Msweli, career coach and CEO of Hesed Consulting, a corporate advisory company

Reciprocate – “When you are seen as helping others, they in turn, will be inclined to return the favour.” – Gwen Serrotti, entrepreneur and founder of the business network, Xtraordinary Women

On business hacks

Hire the best – “We underestimated the value of hiring experienced employees. This was the most trying time for the business because you may have great employees, but they are not a team, they will yield nothing but stagnation.” – Relebohile Moeng, founder of beauty and cosmetics company, Afri-Berry

Quality over quantity – “The devil is always in the detail. You learn the art of conceptualising and writing everything down, and this streamlines your thought process. Finally, executing and measuring your activities.” – Ike Cha

Empower your staff – “Typically people scale (“grow”) their businesses by employing more people to work in the business. They tend to overlook the business processes that will make sure that employees will get the right tools and training to maintain or improve customer service.” – Marang Marekimane, founder of Business Processes Mechanics

On taking care of your customers

Show you care – “Consumers are looking to connect with brands they support and for brands that have a story they can resonate with in some way. In response to this, entrepreneurs need to be socially responsible, not only in terms of giving back to their communities, but also in terms of the products they offer. This is something we embrace with our environmentally friendly products.” – Jo Farah, founder of Sneaker LAB, it manufactures a range of eco-friendly sneaker cleaning products including a sneaker cleaner, odour protectors, brush protector sprays, leather wipes and microfiber towels

You need to know what the prospective client wants to buy

Listen and pay attention – “Listen, be genuine and understand the client’s needs and get to know their pain. You need to recognise that before you can sell something, you need to know what the prospective client wants to buy.” – Mike Anderson, founder and CEO of the National Small Business Chamber

Connect online – “It is important to make sure you’re positively contributing to relevant industry conversations via social media… [For example] small business groups, social media management groups, freelance groups…. questions pop up all the time. Contribute to the conversation.” – Mariza Halliday, co-founder of digital marketing company, Driven Social, and an award-winning South African blogger

On advice for young entrepreneurs

Commit to learning – “My advice to emerging young entrepreneurs is to make a commitment to education, to learning as much as you can, as this will gear you to be more focused and ready for any hiccups this industry has to offer. Accept failure as something that makes you stronger and be able to absorb negativity.” – Thoko Zwane, founder of Thoko’s Diamonds

Don’t under-value yourself – “Initially I under-priced a lot of services based on what I learned freelancers were charging for similar work. When I revisited it and spoke to some of my mentors, I discovered that there is a lot more you need to consider such as your overhead costs, your payroll, and so on. So, you can’t look at pricing as if you are a freelancer.” – Munene Khoza, founder of MINT Language Consultancy, a corporate communications agency

Accept failure as something that makes you stronger

Keep pushing –“Understand that creating a competitive advantage early on is important, and also, let go of staff that hold you back. It’s tough but there are times when parting ways is easier and can save you a lot of money.” – Hezron Louw, co-owner of Sumting Fresh, a corporate and private catering company

Stand out – “Have a clear vision for your company – one of the biggest mistakes an entrepreneur can make is to try and be everything to everyone. Know what your Unique Selling Proposition is and where you want to see your company in the future.” – Lizelle McDermott, managing director of McD Squared, a public relations agency

On health and fitness

Set goals –“Entrepreneurs should care as much about their well-being as they do about the financial and operational aspects of their companies. To achieve this, have wellness as an objective to your strategy … Not in a fuzzy, I-have-good-intentions, when-I-have-the-time type of way, but as a strategic goal with measurable outcomes. Then be accountable to achieving those goals.” – Erika Kruger, a workplace wellness consultant

Planning is essential, because entrepreneurs are very busy

Have a plan – “You need to have a strong why before starting a new habit. You must know why you want to be fit or want to lose weight. Then set short term and medium goals. Also, planning is essential, because entrepreneurs are very busy, it’s critical for them to plan.” – Sam Hlonyana, founder of online wellness programmes, The Habits Guy and 90 Days Without Sugar Movement

Practice self-care – “Self-care looks different for everyone … Firstly, you can ask ‘Is this act coming from a place of self-love?’ Examples of practicing self-love could be finding ways to unwind or not working on the weekend unless absolutely necessary.” – Candice Clark, talent development and acquisition strategist at Agile Talent Company, a HR consultancy

Ask ‘Is this act coming from a place of self-love?’

On mental wellness

Separate the personal from business – “The company is its own entity with its own eco-system. There must be a clear separation between it and you so that it can grow without you. The company must be bigger than the individual and speak to the vision.” – Luvuyo Rani, co-founder of Silulo Ulutho Technologies, an information and communication technologies (ICT) business

Speak to the vision

When comparison strikes – “[When you experience self-defeating thoughts and feelings] remind yourself of all the achievements you have under your belt so far in this very moment.” – Candice Clark

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