At a small rural town that I was visiting I came across an interesting business relationship between a butchery and a small micro-enterprise trading on the street cooking and selling meat products from the butchery. The small enterprise, run by a husband and wife team, had set up and warning canopy and were grilling boerewors (farmer’s sausage) and vetkoek (fat cake) and curried mince. They were doing a brisk trade because many people were stopping at the parking area which also led onto a liquor store. The butcher benefited because customers could taste his meat cooked outside and the small business benefited from the quality of the meat products as well as the steady stream of customers that flowed into the butchery.
With an idea a new business, even if it is a survival micro-enterprise, can get off the ground. In these rural towns, some almost forgotten now, people struggle to find jobs and make a living. But there is a resilience in some people, a will to survive and succeed. No matter what circumstances people find themselves in, they are eager to come up with new ideas and pull themselves up by their own boot straps. It’s a far cry from those who are “takers” in society. The “givers” are the ones that come up with new ideas to make an income for themselves and others even if they get a boot in their faces trying to do so.
I am deliberately using this example of a small, humble micro-business. Yes, it is a survival business. It provides a small income for two people who can’t find jobs. But the point is that these two people would not been able to start the business out of thin air. They didn’t just come up with an idea to start this small pavement eatery, snap their fingers and it appeared on the street. No, we all know it didn’t. These people worked at menial, humble jobs until they could save up enough to finance their tiny eatery.
Without resources, with no cash it is virtually impossible to take and develop your business idea, whether it be for a small craft business, micro-enterprise technology start-up, whatever, without money. The only way that you are going to accumulate money is the way it’s been done for centuries and that is through savings. Whatever your present source of income, it would be wise to put away small amounts until you have a cash kitty that can be used to finance your business ideas.
I know it’s hard. If you take a R1 coin you’ll find that as soon as you’ve earned, it everybody wants it. At least 40 cents is taken by the tax authorities. Living expenses chew up 50 cents. That leaves you with 10 cents. Five of those cents are probably used for tiny “luxuries”. That leaves you with five cents to save. Administered expenses are trying to take away that as well.
No matter how difficult it is to save, and old-fashioned or old school, a cash kitty is needed to kickstart your start-up or small business idea. Yes, you may be able to get loans from friends or family but if you have no cash saved at all, you have no leverage. Why not give some thought to putting away something so that when you come across a promising business idea you have the resources to bring it to life.