Thursday, May 2, 2013

Acquire an Alternative Mindset - We Can All Become Entrepreneurs

By Yusuf Ssessanga

A couple of weeks ago Iringa Living Lab was a hive of activity. The long awaited training on entrepreneurship was finally done, by Mr. Craig Ross from RLabs Cape town. The training attracted more than 20 participants of Iringa Living Lab. And what a week it was!

Participants from Iringa and Mbeya Living Labs.

From the start, Craig emphasized that he was not going to teach, because he’s not a university professor. He was neither going to share new information, we all know what entrepreneurship is about. “So what is he going to do?”, some participants wondered. “I am going to share what has worked in my life, what I have seen work at Rlabs”, he said.

Craig Ross from RLabs shared his story and his experience on entrepreneurship with us. 

Well, true to his word, he shared his experience, in a simple but powerful way. His first challenge was to go against what most people think is a key aspect if one is to become an entrepreneur, having capital. Craig said to become an entrepreneur, one does not need capital. You need a powerful idea that can add value to your target clients.


VALUE!!!! Not that we had not heard about it, it’s a word we come across very often. But, many of us attending the training understood value differently. Many believed it’s about selling a high quality product or service. How wrong we were! Craig proved to us that Coca Cola is not in the business of selling coke, they sell happiness, refreshment! What? Yes, think about it, close your eyes, think of all the Coca Cola adverts, you see that they sell happiness?

Idea generation.

And how do you start a business without capital? It was our turn to prove what many of us didn’t believe was true. After taking us through the exercise of idea generation, now it was time to answer the question, how we go forward with our brilliant ideas. We looked at the enormous requirements for each idea. And then, we looked at what we already have. Many of us discovered we already have what it takes to start, and then capital in form of money can find us on the way. Really!!

Working on the business ideas.

And we all have something at our disposal. So what makes many people not to start? It’s the mindset. We need an alternative mindset, to begin to see the same things with different lenses! Now, this requires a paradigm shift. That is the task we have.

Craig Ross: "If you want to do good, there's no excuses anymore!"

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