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The Walking Entrepreneur

Beginning of the year I got a call from a colleague about an entrepreneur who had walked into the office on Lumumba Avenue looking for assistance. My colleague thought I would be best placed to handle the entrepreneur. The guy was a university student in fort portal and on holiday in Kampala. His business had a social element to it. I asked to speak to him

Me: Can you find me in Kololo?

Him: Yes sir. Let me walk there now. I will be there in 30 minutes

I was slightly amused by that. My mind had gone to boda straight away. True to his word, the guy was there in 30 minutes. He needed some advice on how to go forward with his venture. He makes pavers out of plastic in the backyard of his hostel. We talked for about an hour and gave him some pointers and the Social Venture Model Canvass for him to fill out.

A week later he called. We met again. He walked from Nsambya to Kololo. Every research I would ask for, he would do. He called to request for meeting all the time. He walked every time. On Monday we met in Kisementi.

We discussed various business models he could take. How to do consumer and competitor research. Curious about his walking habit, I asked him about it

Me: Why do you walk everywhere?

Him: No transport

Me: Ah. Don’t the parent’s support?

Him : <silent for a second> My parents are both retired. I am the firstborn and I don’t want to burden them with extra costs. So I walk. I need my business to succeed and start helping them.

Me: Surely they wouldn’t mind

Him: They are working on school fees. I know this business can work if I have the right information.

This guy’s drive impressed me. Never once did he ask for money. Just knowledge on how to make his business more efficient and impactful.

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What do you think?

Written by Businge Abid Weere

Businge Abid Weere, Business Strategy Consultant at Innovent Consult. [email protected]

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