15 June 2017

Lesotho: Workshop Explores Why Businesses Fail

ORGANISERS of an upcoming entrepreneurship training programme say many budding enterprises fail to transition to the level of a corporation because the owners continue to operate as sole traders.

Rethabile Phoofolo, who founded 360 Communications, a research-based company for corporate communications, this week told the Lesotho Times that enterprises stood a better chance of surviving their teething problems if were run as companies and not a one person show.

"In most cases, most small businesses that are established do not progress to the corporate or even to small, medium and micro-enterprises (SMME) levels," she said.

"They more likely than not to remain as a one man show because they don't grow to the level of hiring staff."

Ms Phoofolo said most businesses floundered because the owner would have fallen ill, died or left the area for a long period of time.

"In such cases, the entrepreneur would be the only person with the vision of how to run the business."

She said the workshop, which is scheduled for 4 to 6 July 2017, was being supported by the United States Embassy in Maseru through the YALI Alumni Grant.

Dubbed Youth Business Focus, the seminar is meant to equip entrepreneurs with skills to develop their businesses.

Ms Phoofolo also indicated that the workshop would identify and explore the reasons for the numerous rejections of budding entrepreneurs' business proposals.

"In most cases, budding entrepreneurs fail to understand why their proposals are declined whenever they seek to work with the corporate sector," she said.

"It is mostly because the small businesses would not have been structured well.

"An entrepreneur might be good at what they do, but if their proposal is not intriguing, banks and other institutions may not be convinced."

Ms Phoofolo said they would equip the up-and-coming entrepreneurs with insight on business management.

"Key to this workshop, will be training on value proposition, business models, customer service, management, market research, process development and legal compliance financial management."

She also revealed that they had lined up a number of business support interventions for different stages of the business cycle.

"The business owner needs capacity for different elements, such as how to grow their customer base, refine their business model and to work on their corporate governance in order to service corporate clients," Ms Phoofolo said,


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