ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN SOUTH AFRICA :
What is going? Is entrepreneurs building South Africa or not?
It is clearer today than ever before that small businesses are the most appropriate vehicles for job creation and job retainment. In recognition of this fact, the South African Government has pursued a number of policies to actively promote the growth in this sector.
Although the government’s efforts may be commended, the various policies and initiatives have had mixed results. In certain cases they have gained ground, whilst in others they have failed dismally. The fact of the matter is that the government is trying their best, but obviously depend heavily on the private sector’s input and resources to be successful.
The unemployment rate in South Africa is around 35%.
Some say it is only 25% but the true is, no one really knows because the number of people who receive social grants AND unemployment benefits is growing at a alarming rate every single year, indicating that unemployment is growing too…and you have to see this in the light what AIDS reduced the population grow in the last decade.
It is widely believed that entrepreneurship, and the creation of entrepreneurs, might be the answer to job creation in South Africa – and it will help with other relating social problems.
A key ingredient to creating an entrepreneurial spirit in our country, and thus increase the number of entrepreneurial ventures, is education and training. Many prospective entrepreneurs need business skills. To acquire these they have to attend one or more training courses. Or they have to do what most millionaires (business owners) did.
They start an business and learn the skills “on-the-job” while making money. Most of the business-in-a-box packages that was designed and what is available exclusively at SACE, is the do exactly THAT! Help entrepreneurs to make money fast!
The term entrepreneur and entrepreneurship is not generally well understood.
The word entrepreneur is derived from the French verb entreprendre, which means to undertake. The words entrepreneur and entrepreneurship are widely used as synonyms for small business owners and small businesses.
This is not correct, as there are some distinct differences between an entrepreneur and a small business owner. A small business owner could be entrepreneurial, but might not be an entrepreneur. Although they share certain characteristics, an entrepreneur is also innovative, recognizes new opportunities and grows the business in terms of turnover, return on investment, staff, assets and profit.
From this it seems that the person selling fruit on the street corner might be a small businessman, but not an entrepreneur. Before getting too tied up with the semantics, let us state our vision. We realize that very few people are BORN entrepreneurs and that it is impossible to make everybody entrepreneurs.
Here at the SA Chamber of Entrepreneurs (SACE) we believe, however, that most people can be trained to become small business owners.
Those business owners that excel probably do so due to aspects of entrepreneurial behavior. We believe it is our role to help people set themselves up in a small business. This is the first step. Once the business is operational, we can supply further training and mentoring to entrench entrepreneurial skills.
Why didn’t we call ourselves the Small Business Academy? A very good question indeed.
Although we know that not everyone could be an entrepreneur, we believe that starting a small business is the first step. Many of our clients and students will remain at this level, but a certain percentage will become entrepreneurs, which is our second, but ultimate goal.
Our country is in desperate need of small business owners, who will in future progress to become entrepreneurs. Although most small business owners do not create employment by appointing people, they are creating employment for themselves, and thus create a vacancy in the formal sector for someone else.
A new trend is for small business owners not to employ staff in the true sense of the meaning. If they need assistance on a project, they will merely subcontract these to someone else (usually to another small business). From a business point of view, this makes a lot of sense.
That means that the small business owner is not burdened with a fixed overhead expense (salary) or with the legal requirements regulated by a large number of employment legislation acts. This trend of not employing people will hopefully create a society of people realizing that income will be forth coming from contracts, rather than from full-time employment.
One should therefore always deliver good work at competitive pricing to ensure future contracts. This in itself leads to the realization that we all need to become more entrepreneurial by being innovative, recognizing opportunities and thereby growing our own income.
The time for large corporate companies to create jobs is over.
We are all “forced” to become entrepreneurial, to survive. The benefits of this trend will only be realized, by most, in the future.
Take a few minutes right now and look at all the great business opportunities that the SA Chamber (SACE) created for you. It is very easy and very affordable to buy a business from SACE.
All the businesses in our portfolio is YOUR Road Map to success.