Zandile Khumalo is dreaming so big it scares her. But that’s what entrepreneurship is for her: A burning desire to create something of her own. Does the journey frighten her? Absolutely, but she also believes that a bit of fear is great fuel for her entrepreneurial fire.
“I’ve learnt this is not an easy path. Starting a business doesn’t happen overnight. It’s hard work; it takes time; and you need to have the right foundations in place if you want to grow a sustainable company.”
This is why Khumalo joined the Awethu Project. Having just completed her diploma at a beauty school, Khumalo knew she didn’t want to work for a spa – she wanted to create her own.
She also realised she needed a mentor who understood the ins and outs of launching a business.
“Awethu was recruiting for the project in my area and their value system just made so much sense to me,” she says. “They’re bridging the gap between formal and informal markets, with a strong focus on supporting new, young entrepreneurs with the drive and passion to see their dreams through.”
Chosen for a one month trial programme, Khumalo needed to prove she was serious before she was accepted into Awethu’s 36-month programme. “It’s an amazing programme,” she says. “You’re surrounded by an incredible support system, you have access to Awethu’s infrastructure, you can walk through each problem and decision with a mentor and share your experiences with entrepreneurs who are experiencing what you’re experiencing.”
Khumalo is six months into the programme and almost ready for the official launch of Mvelo Beauty Spa, a mobile spa solution that targets corporates and individual clients. “I’ve been working as a beauty consultant for Black Opal to pay the bills while I’ve been creating systems and focusing on my business plan and marketing strategy.
“My mentor has been with me every step of the way, and has really helped me understand that if you want to do something right the first time, you need good foundations.This has made the whole process slower, but it will all be worth it in the long run. I’ll become an employer myself, and own the business I’ve always wanted.”
- Player: Zandile Khumalo
- Company: Mvelo Beauty Spa
- Est: 2013
- X-Factor: Strong mentorship and support systems lay solid foundations.
- Connect: mvelobeautyspa.wozaonline.co.za ; awethuproject.co.za