Lack of mentorship killing businesses
Publish Date: Jul 31, 2014
Lack of mentorship killing businesses
  • mail
  • img

By Prossy Nandudu

ABSENCE of mentoring programmes for businesses is the reason why many have failed to break even. 

This is because people start without the help of mentors experienced in those areas to teach and guide them in basics to consider for the success of a particular business.

The observation was made by Alex Ariho, the coordinator of Universities, Businesses and Research in Agriculture Innovation (UniBRAIN), while presenting a paper titled fostering mentorship in Agribusiness innovations.

This was at a consultative mentorship workshop organized by the Pan African Agribusiness and Agro forestry Consortium (PanAAC) and UniBRAIN at Imperial Royal Golf Hotel in Entebbe.

During the mentorship process, a business owner is able to understand how to package his products, market, the relevance, alternative sources of capital to keep the business running, effective management among others, added Ariho’s presentation.

He further adds that in the process, the mentor is able to indentify mistakes in the business which is brought to the attention of the business owner for correction hence leading to the sustainability of the business.

To counter the trend, UniBRAIN and PanAAC are spearheading the mentorship programme in universities, targeting students with entrepreneurial ideas. This is because, African universities are not sufficiently able to meet the needs of the industry. 

UniBRAIN was established to realize the African Union Commission initiative of investment in African agribusiness by breaking barriers and fostering collaboration between universities, business and research to produce graduates who are problem solvers.

“The absence of mentorship programmes in tertiary institutions has seen graduates who cannot find employment, while many small businesses lack staff with the education and skills needed to drive innovation,” he added. 

Studies show that when university graduates do business, they create more jobs than those without a university education hence the need for mentoring. 

The mentorship progamme will create a link across agricultural value chains – locally, nationally and regionally where by universities will be able to educate entrepreneurs who can tap the under-exploited potential in agriculture for growth, job creation and poverty reduction according to PanAAC.

However Dr.Chris Muyunda, a director at PanAAC asked stakeholders not to stop at mentoring students into business people but go an extra mile and find more finances that can be availed to them so they can run their businesses on their own at the end of the mentorship programme.

In Uganda, students are being mentored at various institutions which include AFri Banana, involved in the banana value chain and Consortium for enhancing University Responsiveness to Agribusiness Development (CURAD), looking at coffee.

Isaac Mugera and Omio, second year agricultural sciences students at Makerere University are being guided on a broiler project while Molly Allen is into coffee seedlings while Sam Turyatunga is into banana juice production and is being mentored at Afri banana.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
BAT tobacco giant paid bribes in east Africa
British American Tobacco paid bribes to officials in east Africa, including two members of a convention created under the World Health Organization (WHO) to combat smoking, according to a BBC investigation airing on Monday....
Govt  allocates sh8bn for skills training
Government has announced that it will allocate more funds to Enterprise Uganda to train more Ugandans in business, managerial, marketing and communication skills to run their own enterprises, according to the state minster for Finance, David Bahati...
Human resource training:  A missing link in cooperatives
Strategic human resource education and training remain a key missing link in the ongoing movement to revive co-operatives fully, a co-operative consultant has said....
Black Friday online shopping rivals stores in US
The closely watched survey said that about 151 million people shopped either in stores and/or online over the long weekend in the United States...
Bee farmers want processing technologies
FARMERS into Apiculture want technologies that will stop their honey from crystallizing and forming granules while on the shelves in selling points like supermarkets...
Gulf unwilling to tighten oil taps alone: analysts
Saudi-led Gulf OPEC members will reject pressure to shoulder the cost of cutting oil production alone despite warnings that prices risk sliding further, officials and analysts say....
Do you think Uganda is winning the fight against AIDS?
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter