Devan Moonsamy 

The unemployment rate in South Africa is alarming. Each quarter Statistics South Africa reveals the percentage of South Africans who are unemployed. The numbers are shocking, scary and something must be done about it. 

This exposes the reality of how a number of families are struggling due to the breadwinners being out of work. How do these families make ends meet? The unemployment unearths the reality of poverty in South Africa which not even a support grant can remedy. 

It also shows us how difficult the circumstances are with the existence of Covid-19. The loss of jobs due to the pandemic has contributed to the unemployment rate in our country. 

What can be done to remedy this? 

How can South Africans turn around the circumstances? 

Entrepreneurship must be considered as a possible way forward in turning around the slump in employment. It can start out as a vision for something you believe in and turn into a complete success story. But whether you are embarking on this uncertain journey with nothing but an idea, the reality is entrepreneurship is a risk. 

However, it should not be the reason to not take the risk. It is essential to be open minded and to do due homework around the business idea you might want to explore. What needs to be seen is what are the pros and cons of doing this. 

– The advantage of being an entrepreneur is that you have the opportunity to start something that aligns with your frame of thought. You have the opportunity to mould a firm that breathes what you believe in. Being an entrepreneur means you can create a business that supports your passion. If your values are to save the environment or create more jobs for people with disabilities, being an entrepreneur gives you the space to do that. 

– When you start your own business, it also gives you a chance to grow. This means always improving your skills and knowledge on managing people and maintaining professional growth. 

– Being your own boss means you can be flexible and also be your own boss. You are able to harness your leadership skills and improve the way in which you engage with people. This means you get to choose your clients and the people you want to do business with. 

As we gloat about the brilliances of entrepreneurship, we can’t ignore the disadvantages and challenges. 

– The biggest challenge is that, this is a financial risk. There isn’t a guarantee of financial turnaround in the initial days. As an entrepreneur you would need to scout for investors, capital and perhaps even a set clientele to get your product of service out there. 

– Being an entrepreneur means never having the luxury of having time off. This means not having set work hours. This can pose as a challenge for someone who might not be familiar with a schedule that isn’t 9 to 5. 

– You might also find a team that are not as invested in your idea of work and values. The brilliance in any organisation shines when there is exceptional teamwork. If you don’t have good teamwork at the get go, there is a risk of having negative results. This might discourage and leave team members feeling disoriented for joining a start-up. 

Ultimately, starting a business needs a plan. Before going in head first, gather as much information as you can to support your idea and vision. Take the opportunity to get started on that long term plan you have had on selling your own product. 

Devan Moonsamy is the CEO of ICHAF Training Institute, a South African TVET College. He is the author of Racism, Classism, Sexism, And The Other ISMs That Divide Us, AND My Leadership Legacy Journal available from the ICHAF Training Institute. 

The ICHAF Training Institute offers SETA-approved training in business skills, computer use, and soft skills. Devan specialises in conflict and diversity management, and regularly conducts seminars on these issues for corporates. To book a seminar with Devan or for other training courses, please use the contact details below.

Tel: 011 262 2461 | 083 303 9159 |

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