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At 21, Zareef Minty Works Harder Than Most

At 21, Zareef Minty is young. Very young. He’s also phenomenally busy, juggling countless responsibilities daily. Entrepreneur finds out what drives him, and how he manages his diverse duties.

Monique Verduyn

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He’s been named one of the Top 200 Young South Africans by the Mail & Guardian; he’s a former chairperson of the Black Lawyers Association Wits Branch and the Student Discipline Committee, as well as a former treasurer of the Law Students Council; he’s also a motivational speaker, owner of a clothing and talent company called SMB (self-made billionaire), author, talk-show host and general whiz kid.

Oh, and he was also the national youth president of the Patriotic Alliance (PA). Meet Zareef Minty (21), a final-year law student who has done more in his young life than most people three times his age would ever dream of. We asked Minty what drives him and how he manages to do it all.

Related: David Perel Of Obox On Chasing Multiple Dream

1. Manage your time efficiently

I have an electronic diary and I use it. It’s always up to date because I refuse to be late for anything. I never miss a deadline either. I may be a student now, but I know that I’m unlikely to succeed in business in the future if I don’t deliver on time.

2. Prioritise

Don’t say ‘yes’ to everything. Choose what is important in your life. What are the actions and commitments that will enable your vision to become reality? When you know what they are, take steps every day to move yourself closer to your goals.

3. Choose to make a positive impact on the world

I was 12 when I spotted someone begging for money on the side of the road. I knew that I never wanted to be in that position, so at 16 I started a clothing brand. I’ve always been a great networker and I contacted celebrities like Kenny Kunene, Nicky van der Walt and Lee-Ann Liebenberg to introduce the brand to them. They started wearing my gear and promoted it in a way I could not have done.

4. Do things differently

Zareef-Minty-Empire

I spent two years working on my book, Empire, which aims to help young people become financially savvy and adept at self-branding so that they can reach their full potential.

Then I discovered that monopoly publishers and distributors were going to claim 70% of the profits from the book sales. I followed the example of DJ Sbu — I self-published, and I sell the book through my own distribution channels on social media.

I also sell it through Exclusive Books, since I achieved a better deal. The book has sold more than 9 000 copies, making it a South African bestseller.

Related: How AutoTrader Anticipated Change

5. Learn to network

I have spoken to many students in poor areas around the country and I was shocked to discover how few know anything about the concept of networking. This places them at a terrible disadvantage.

It’s something that successful people do from an early age, and I would like to see young South Africans being taught the value of making connections with people.

From when I was very young, I believed that whatever you want to became, you have to attract it to yourself. I got close to people I admired and asked them to mentor me.

6. Get an education

That’s the most important thing for every young person in this country. I know I will diversify in my career, but I have the safety net of a law degree for the rest of my life. To cease being job seekers and rather become job makers, we need to be educated. That is the key to moving South Africa forward.

Monique Verduyn is a freelance writer. She has more than 12 years’ experience in writing for the corporate, SME, IT and entertainment sectors, and has interviewed many of South Africa’s most prominent business leaders and thinkers. Find her on Google+.

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How Nic Haralambous Launched His 6 Year In The Making, Overnight Success

Nic Haralambous launched 8 failing businesses. He used the lessons learnt from that failure to ensure the success of his new business Nic Harry.

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Nic Haralambous, the founder and CEO of Nic Harry who started off selling bamboo socks online and now has brick and mortar stores with a larger product range around the country. Nic has also written a book titled Do. Fail. Learn. Repeat. which is a brutally honest look at entrepreneurship and follows Nic’s entrepreneurial journey. Learn from his failures and how he used them as the foundation of his success.

Related: (Podcast) Speak More Honestly

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Vuyo Tofile Of EntBanc Group Talks About Finding Solutions And Partnering To Offer The Most Value

Vuyo Tofile offers his advice on how to know if you’re ready to scale and how to get it right the first time.

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Vuyo Tofile, CEO of EntBanc Group (Pty) Ltd, which is a privately held enterprise and financial technology group. They empower small businesses with the right tools including products such as mySMEtools, which is used by over 46 000 small businesses. Learn about partnering for success, develop tools and resources that your customer base needs, and how can you scale?

Related: Do You Have That 1 In 100 Business That Can Scale And Land An Investor?

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Eben Uys Shares His Concept Behind Mad Giant Brewery And How You Can Make Your Business Stand Out In A Crowd

“You just need to start” says Eben Uys, don’t make up excuses why you aren’t ready. Just start.

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Eben Uys, Co-founder and CEO of Mad Giant, a Brewery in the heart of Johannesburg, South Africa. Eben brings new life to craft beer and has made his brewery and restaurant Urbanologi, a destination hub. His advice: “You can do things that give you short-term gains, but it might not benefit you in the long term. Try a lot of things over a long period of time and build a reputation and a network.”

Related: 10 SA Entrepreneurs Who Built Their Businesses From Nothing

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