Last week I was invited to WASME ICSME 2013.
This was the International Conference on Small and Medium Enterprise (ICSME)
They had some wonderful speakers.
One of the Speakers Ashish Thakkar
Ashish Thakkar the CEO of Mara Group and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader gave us the following business advice:
- Everything our company does has to be Pan-African
- It must be game-changing
- Just be yourself
- Have your own core values
I asked him how does he close sales? 'Offer something unique. Be persistent. You have to under promise and over sell. Keep at it. You must not give up.'
I asked him to give us some networking tips? 'Have no shame but be respectful. Go up to people. Remember your 30 second elevator speech. Have no ego. Keep at it!'
Even he has had financing turned down. He likes to write monthly reports on what his company has achieved.
The Mayor of Ethekwini reminded us that the Business Fair enables business to showcase their products and expand their customer base.
Mr Sisa Ntshana from Absa asked 'Do we have a conducive environment for smme's?'
His advice: 'The more informed you are the better decisions you can make.'
He also told us that 'Africa is the second fastest growing bloc behind Asia.'
Mr Akash Singh reminded us to 'Stay motivated.'
Mr Rohit Shukla from the USA gave us the following business insight:
'What do you have?
'What can you build?'
'Global networks are vital.'
'South Africans spend more on clothing and jewelry than they do on education.'
'If you don't know who your customers are how can you reach them?'
'What are your competitive strengths?'
'Who is doing what and how?'
All in all this was a fascinating conference which gave deeper insight into the minds
of business people.
More useful info about the conference here: http://www.wasmeicsme2013.org
Article and Photo by +Fred Felton