By Paul Muleme
Some businesses start small with a dream of growing big. Take the example of Dell in its heyday it was the largest seller of personal computers in the world.
The company was born out of a mind of a Texas University student, Michael Dell. While still at school, he began the business as PC’S Limited out of his dorm. Dell went public just four years later of a whopping $80m.
It should be noted that when small enterprise grow into big giant corporations it is not by accident but behind that growth is a well thought out business plan with a drive and resources to get there.
All starting businesses/projects are capable to grow as long as there is ambition and capability of the owner. However, one may argue that many owners with ambitious plans may not have the management and leadership capability to achieve them.
Taking a small business to the next level requires hard work, perseverance, great customer service, good product and excel at what you are doing.
Roko Construction Company founded in 1969 by Rohler and Kohler in Uganda is a living example of a company that has transcended a test of time of over 50 years to become one of Uganda’s leading construction and civil engineering group.
It should be noted that finding the right people is a great key to success, so if you find someone great hire them.
There is need to expand slowly and sustainably, reinvest in the business and not take money out of the business for none core activities. You can also do everything by your own when you have just started but as time goes on you will need to learn how to delegate and keep a good team of people around you.
We can take a good example of Mrs Kakembo who recently featured on Bukedde TV One, who started with sh100,000 in 2000. She started to cook food, used utensils at home to start and hired one person to help.
She used a business principle of not discriminating clients by accepting to offer her catering services to people of all levels of incomes which enabled her to build her clientele. She could also go anywhere to extend her services and currently she is known in many places. She emphasizes quality in her services.
From her story it can be analysed that Kakembo has a personal drive and ambition to grow big.
Young people in schools and institutions of learning should not fear to start small and develop their ideas into big realities, we have seen new innovations at Makerere University in the previous two years like the launch of the electronic car, which was successfully tested as the Kiira EV manufactured by students of the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology funded under the Presidential Initiative at the university to propel technology research.
Students tend to think that their careers start after they graduate whereas successful business pioneers get going while still at school.
Computer science graduates like Larry Page and Sargey Brin, while working on their PhD project started a search engine called ‘Back Rub’while at Stanford University in 1996. They ran their site on Stanford servers for a year and later renamed it ‘Google’ which is the greatest search engine in the world earning billion dollars in revenue.
It should be noted that technology is enabling young people to realise their ideas and goals get realised faster than ever before.
Young people innately understand technology for this reason teen entrepreneurship will continue to grow for the foreseeable future from small to big enterprises.
This can be seen with so many IT based services coming up in Uganda like internet cafes , events service providers, phone booths, mobile money shops to mention but a few who will later turn into big global events and marketing conglomerates.