EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH ENTREPRENEUROLOGIST DERRICK NDZAVI

Derrick Ndzavi  Hlungwani is an Entrepreneurologist, a Business consultant of note who started with registering companies, and then a need to help those businesses grow arose and moved in to Business Advisor cum Coach. 
As an Entrepreneur himself, with all the businesses that he consult with he saw a métier to offer advertisement space to the businesses that are under the database and those which are not, he then started to run adverts on the website that would attract visitors and clients through providing daily business news and writing articles then interview them on the website, also publish articles by contributors.

He is the founder of New DiscoveryBS and has helped register over 10 000 companies, mentored over 4000 and offered advices to other companies on day to day basis.  The company has been instrumental in assisting many companies obtain business funding through the business plan writing and presentation. 

In order to stay in touch with the clients the company has set up a media wing through which it is able to keep clients up to date with current economic news and events taking place in their vicinity.  The company also provides opportunity for businesses to advertise on the website and offer interview to entrepreneurs to sell and market their businesses better, I had the pleasure of interviewing him.
SEIF KABELELE: How did the idea for your business come about?

DERRICK NDZAVI: I believe that any business idea come as a desire to meet certain need or change of your personal lifestyle, with me was growing loving cars and most people with cars were owning businesses then but when I got into business realized that it is not about cars only.

 SK: How do you find people to bring into your organization that truly care about the Organization the way you do?

DN:  It is difficult especially when you have started and the business needs people not you, at that point you ask anyone who know someone and end up getting wrong people. Always spot a need in a business before it becomes crisis, that way you get to look for suitable person without pressure.

SK: What advice would you give to college students who want to become entrepreneurs?

DN:  Don’t wait until you graduate to get started, if there is a way to start small go for it, that way you are able to say “I have business experience”


SK: If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?

DN:  Not chasing money but focusing on developing the brand and the product understanding that once that is in place money will follow.

SK: What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

DN:  Frankly, all skills fit into entrepreneurship because with any skill one gets to work for a company that is owned by entrepreneur.

SK: What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?

DN:  Failing to implement my own policies has been my major failures as I realized later that had I focused on them would not have faltered many times.
SK: How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?

DN:  As long as you can give it a try before ruling it out

SK: What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?

DN:  Failing to provide for my family and that is what drives me to want to do more.

SK: How do you define success?

DN:  When you do what you purposed to do and do it as per plan that is success. Be it good or bad since you can succeed in doing bad thing that you purposed to do

SK: What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

DN:  Success is a success be it long or short of it.

SK: Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?

DN:  I built my business based on marketing and advertising and brand positioning and allowed it to grow organically without being acquired or cash boosted from outside

SK: How do you build a successful customer base?

DN:  Meeting their needs and changing with times to stay relevant for clients

SK: How did you decide on the location for your business?

DN:  With online access whereby today am able to do interview right in Ghana I would say my business model has no location, I can do business anywhere anytime with anyone

SK: Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?

DN:  Discipline is the only formula.  In order to be successful you are either disciplined or cruel.

SK: If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why?

DN:  Solomon would be my man, to ask him how he could get off course when he had all the wisdom

SK: Who has been your greatest inspiration?

DN:  My school principal Calvin Mabunda, he spoke to me once telling me that there is no reason I can fail any standard in life and since then I had the success attitude.

SK: What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

DN:  Not knowing what awaits you each day that I like the most
SK: What has been your most satisfying moment in business?

DN:  Seeing my clients happy

SK: What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

DN:  Isn’t it obvious? IF you work for someone you are not in control and not in charge, you may have comfort of salary but someone has comfort of profit.

SK: How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?

DN:  Talking about what I do, that has been the successful form

SK: What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?

DN:  There is no culture except following the policies and guidelines that are led by prayer.

SK: What are the current opportunities you have seen for SMMEs or people wanting to start up their own business?

DN:  There are opportunities everywhere, SMMEs just have to identify what they can do and pursue it than being all over

SK: Have you heard of any great SMME success stories recently?

DN:  Through media yes, but on those I mentor would need permission first to share their success

SK: If you were to start an SMME now, what sort of line would you look at starting?

DN:  My role within Entrepreneurship space is being a mentor, so I am all-rounder, I am like a teacher who can teach student to become lawyers, doctors etc without necessarily having desire to become one but be able to hand over to next teacher to continue the work.  Same as mentoring, desire is to see ideas become reality through our guidance without building a singular interest in a particular business.

SK: In your opinion, what effect has the recent economic challenges had on SMMEs?

DN:  Well by recent will depend on which side of the map are we at since there are economic challenges everyday everywhere and it is only when governments respond positive towards the needs of SMMEs that challenges are overcome


Derrick is a Certified Business Advisor (IBASA Member) and Founder of New DiscoveryBS newdiscoverybs.co.za

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