This month would look at what drives entrepreneurs, we offer 10 rules to live by and meet our latest square pegs Magapa Phaweni, Richard Kelly and Craig O'Reilly.
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What drives entrepreneurs to take the path less travelled?

One of the most enduring myths about those who take the difficult, uncharted path of pioneering their own businesses is that they are mainly motivated by money. The short response to anyone who tries to uphold this crude misunderstanding is simply: there are many easier ways to make money than starting your own business.

The long answer has to do with what really drives and fulfils entrepreneurs. If it isn't mainly profits, what then? And the reason why it is a long answer is because there are many different urges that entrepreneurs try to fulfil when they risk so much and work so hard for their businesses, says Gugu Mjadu, executive general manager: marketing for Business Partners Limited (BUSINESS/PARTNERS).

While not one entrepreneur's set of inspirations is the same as another's, there are broad patterns that help us understand these complex soldiers of economic growth and wealth creation.


Ten rules that entrepreneurs live by

The life of an entrepreneur is different from that of ordinary people in many ways, and one of the main ways in which it differs is that it is more challenging. This is mainly because the entrepreneur sees the world not as it is, but as it can be, and then sets about changing it, says David Morobe, BUSINESS/PARTNERS regional general manager.

How do entrepreneurs manage to thrive even while taking such a difficult approach to the world? Morobe believes that the answer lies in their disciplined attitude which, although it varies in emphasis from entrepreneur to entrepreneur, can generally be described in the following ten rules that they live by:

1. Believe in yourself

Entrepreneurs tend to maintain a strong belief in their ability to achieve their goals, upon which they remain focused. They get out of bed in the mornings believing that they have something meaningful to do and a legacy to leave behind. It is a powerful drive that helps to keep them going even when times are tough.

October 2015 / Vol.6.8


Are you a
square peg?

This quiz is not scientific but serves to highlight some of the key attributes of entrepreneurs or “square pegs”, as we at Business Partners affectionately call them. The quiz should give you some idea on whether you “possess” entrepreneurial qualities, or not. However, please remember that a positive outcome/score is not a recipe for success.

Take the quiz

Quest for next entrepreneurial challenge never ends

Magapa Phaweni's 84-year-old father, Rakailana Phaweni, regularly heads off with a load of second-hand clothing to his trading spot and spends the day selling. Financially, he doesn't have to – his daughter has become a successful entrepreneur beyond anything the retired carpentry worker ever dared to have imagined.

Magapa, who has built a diverse and thriving group of companies in recruitment, consulting and property development, worries about these exertions at his age, but she knows that her father needs the entrepreneurial challenge to keep going. “It is just in him,” she says about the drive which she inherited from her parents.

Ever since she can remember, her father and mother, a domestic worker, traded to supplement their wages.


Former waiter now owner of thriving restaurant

When Richard Kelly took a job as a waiter just after school it was simply a way of earning something while he decided what to do next. Little did he know that he would not only find his passion in the restaurant trade, but that he would one day own the very restaurant where he started.

Kelly, 29, is the proud co-owner of the Full Stop Cafe, a 250-seater restaurant with a mostly Mediterranean menu in Parktown North, Johannesburg. “I basically sacrificed my twenties,” he says as he described the hard work that he had to put into his rise from waiter to owner.

Kelly's story is also one of mentorship, partnership and some risk-taking, all mixed in with a little luck. He was fortunate to have started at a restaurant owned by an entrepreneur with impeccable integrity.

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