Why Social Entrepreneurship is bound to thrive in 2018 and beyond

The current entrepreneurial space is dynamic. Businesses have to consistently and creatively review their business strategies for growth and survival. Traditionally, most entrepreneurs were primarily concerned with making a profit and their business well being without serious scrutiny of the business idea. Currently, companies have to stretch its mandate to determine its impact on the general welfare of the society. Besides being attracted to lucrative return on investment, what is the societal problem that the business seeks to solve? Exclusive profitability or social impact is one of the significant questions that current crop of entrepreneurs has to answer going forward.

Social enterprises principally operate with the agenda of value creation for the society besides generating income. The solutions they present should always be in line with creativity/innovation, people-centered and environmental friendliness, cultural consciousness. It forms the basis for understanding the concept of social entrepreneurship. It`s passionate risk-taking that involves innovative plus practical answers towards benefiting the society through the business operations.

Globally, social entrepreneurship is gradually getting embraced by both start-up entrepreneurs and existing entrepreneurs. Firms are as well responding to corporate social responsibilities, finding a way of creating a real network, communication, and support to the people and society. Many ventures going the social direction continues to thrive in the current entrepreneurship space truly. There exist insightful reasons for the current change of events that every entrepreneur needs to understand.

Ease of raising capital; one the biggest nightmare for many entrepreneurs is raising money. Currently, social business ideas with a stronger considerable solution to societal problems find it easier to attract financing. There are government schemes and incentive programs to support such ventures. The ethical factor in this investment industry plays a role in easing capital acquisition at favorable and lower market rates.

Attractive to support from like-minded; the social aspect of the business makes easier to attract many people onboard from experts to employees at more lower costs compared to other sectors.

Marketing and promotion made slightly easy; bringing out the social problem and outlining a proper plan for the solution goes well in attracting the attention of media platforms and people in general. Such positive initiatives sell well in the society. The higher the uniqueness of the solution the enterprise brings, the higher the amount of publicity.

Cost-effectiveness is a significant consideration; many consumers take into account the element of cost in every decision towards a product/service. The solutions provided by social enterprises are always in the form of product or service offered at a reasonable price compared to the profit-minded ventures. It`s a fact that many essential amenities such as schools, hospitals managed by social enterprises are more affordable to the people all over the world.

The wave of Millennials; currently, the Millennials has a massive influence in the entrepreneurship space. They are doing things differently and have a different mindset compared to the previous generation. They are not carried away with the corporate careers as previously evident. Being the future business leaders to transform the world, it shows an exciting business direction in store. The youthful business leaders are taking front seats with startups, inventing more social ventures and are positioning themselves as the change agents to the world. To them creating remarkable positive social impact is beyond choice but a necessity.

Considerable focus aiming at better business practices and values; presently, consumers expects more from companies, it`s never enough to focus entirely on corporation`s financial soundness, it must now take more effort towards creating a mission for social impact to thrive. The traditional businesses are increasingly reviewing their business models to support corporate social responsibility to achieve the social effect. The people find it easier to do business with firms that value and support their needs by coming up with unique and timely solutions.

Social enterprises continue to transform lives; Social entrepreneurship has a measurable impact on lives of many people all over the world. The solutions they provide through product/services and opportunities to locals have gone down in saving and positively impacting many lives. Many studies have demonstrated measurable economic impact in the society and state through social ventures. Employment opportunities are in upscale with thousands of jobs created accommodating every group in the community especially the disadvantaged people who have undermined. The social programs and programs continue many gaps in the society and are driving many people to their support, and the community believes that this is the perfect way to go.

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Why the youths currently needs surety of prosperous future in Agribusiness

Youths have been targeted and identified as a critical player towards agricultural transformation. Significant efforts are bending towards attracting this section of the population due to their potentials and abilities. In many regions, the campaign has been dubbed Agribusiness, making agriculture `cool` among many other lucrative languages to change the general attitude of the youths towards agripreneurship. In developing economies, the population is rapidly growing translating to the need to live up to the demands of the many mouths to feed. Food security, proper nutrition, economic empowerment, job creation are some of the top agendas that are driven by various governments to be spearheaded by the youths.

From various research, the average age of farmers is dominated mainly by aging population who are becoming unproductive every day and lack the necessary skills and abilities to cope with the agricultural advancements. The youths, therefore, have been under significant pressure from all quarters to replace the aging generation and feed the nation and having a better way of dealing with the massive unemployment rate. Many will agree that it is a noble course but the young generation aren’t going to blindly replace their aging parents without surety of prosperous future and proper structures/ policies that to empower them with knowledge/tools in agribusiness to realize their dreams. From this angle, it becomes more evident on the direction to take to drive more youths to farm and need to address the very many bottlenecks that have continuously frustrated and thrown out many young people from farming.

In many cases, efforts are shifting towards challenging the youths to embrace agriculture, but little concern has been deployed to listen to the frustrations many young farmers have encountered in their agribusiness careers plus the challenges that keep scaring away many young and hopeful farmers from embracing agribusiness. In many interactions, there are several thought-provoking insights must not be overlooked:

  • Youths avoid farming because it`s mostly a gamble and punishes any losses heavily, it`s too expensive
  • Does agriculture indeed obey the principle of risks which states higher risks translates to higher returns?
  • How does one master the art of survival even after series of failure but still stabilize and remain in the game? Can the youths cope and sustain the bills of the many inevitable failures?
  • Farming is predominantly marketing as a passion just because of the `craziness` it demands to survive.
  • In the absence of technology, it can be frustrating to realize good returns from farming to live up to the desired dreams.
  • Farming is never fun like any other fun run, and there is no fun about it.
  • Farming is mostly an on-job learning exercise; the learning process is costly. Where are the youths getting money to manage this?

Despite the remarkable milestone made towards transformational agriculture especially with technological advancement, not many youths have embraced the agricultural value chains to the desired expectations. Through my individual experience, interactions and research on this particular topic, some areas must be strengthened to lure more youths into agribusiness.

Youths not adequately involved in agriculture policies; Transformational agriculture largely depends on innovative strategies developed as the driving force. Focusing and implementing strategic youth policies are significant towards involving and providing youths needed platform and structure for engaging in agriculture as another sustainable livelihood to create viable agribusiness ventures crossing the agricultural value chain. In Africa, most governments haven`t fully initiated policies ensuring vibrant, youthful participation in the farming sector. There are fewer channels to allow youths share their opinion and frustrations that can help develop workable systems to respond to the challenges faced by the young generation. The public-private partnership is an avenue that hasn’t involve and brought all farmers into the standard table, and this has left some youths entirely depending on government handouts and aids which is never sustainable to engage in agriculture.

Weaker agricultural value chains; Success of modern farming depends on well-structured and coordinated value chains building relationships, structures and resources around agricultural development. Underdeveloped value chains in many developing economies deny many young agricultural entrepreneurs coordinate with other stakeholders and access the much-needed inputs, infrastructure, and services. Among many key areas that remain a challenge includes; agricultural mechanization services, extension services, agricultural financing, Sustainable agricultural market access, Storage/transport services, agro-inputs.

Limited practical training and development schemes for the young agripreneurs; with the ever-changing technology and challenges arising every day in agribusiness. The youths must always be trained and equipped with the knowledge and skills to match the current agricultural transformation. In many developing economies, young farmers are still not adequately empowered to approach the new advancements. Many youths have stayed away from due to their incapacitations and feel left out across the agricultural value chain.

Inability to access land for farming; many youths lack the land ownership rights and lack the financial abilities to acquire or lease lands for their agricultural ventures. It has stagnated and frustrated many youthful agribusiness dreams. Interventions and more pragmatic approach should be in place towards addressing the challenge to develop prudent land lease policies.

Inadequate agricultural financial funding; you can`t address all the challenges youths face towards modern farming without pointing out financial problems. Many potential transformative ideas remain unimplemented due to the financial constraints. The resources, infrastructures, and facilities required to embrace modern farming entirely revolves around finances which many young agricultural entrepreneurs lack. It has significantly hindered productivity and sustainability of many agribusiness ventures.

There also exist many other general challenges that farmers face across the globe that demand policymakers and agricultural stakeholders to take much keener interest into to make noticeable progress towards attracting and sustaining many youths into agricultural value-chains. There must be considerable investments towards infrastructural advancements, creating a productive link between research /development and creative, innovative technology addressing growing agribusiness challenges. Collaboration/synergy between various stakeholders should be emphasized to ensure acquisition of factual and firsthand information that can go a long way in agricultural transformation and informed policies.

What every entrepreneur must know towards successful business negotiation

Negotiating is inevitable in the daily life of an entrepreneur. Business has to make deals, decisions that play a significant role towards success or failure of the firm. The arrangements and the agreements revolve around negotiations. It portrays why it is an essential element of the business process that needs considerable attention. If you don’t master the art of negotiation, your entrepreneurial success will be under serious question. After all, entrepreneurship is about convincing others from investors, customers, employees, suppliers, potential business partners to policymakers to invest their resources, reputation, expertise, money to your outlined idea.

Negotiations are an essential but delicate element of business built around a balance of giving and take. It requires keen and detailed strategies to be a successful negotiator and get best deal possible under the prevailing circumstances. Every contract negotiation is unique in its way and requires a unique approach to optimise it.
In reality, negotiations can be more complicated and require consideration of many factors on behalf of everyone involved in maximum commitment. Relying much on self-centeredness, emotions and psyches can be a sure way to manipulation, compromised/ fearful submission and wavy territorial power plays. A successful negotiation process builds around meeting the needs of every party in the process. The point of convergence should be a common ground where it is a win-win situation for each participant.

It’s essential for every individual entrepreneur to make an effort to master the art of successful negotiations. Many have made severe business mistakes that have thrown them out of business arena, some are very green and have little experience on how to adequately tackle the concept. Interestingly, I have come across individuals that have made it in their mind that they are poor negotiators and can’t make any positive progress on the process, they end up hiring others to negotiate on their behalf. Every nature/ size of the business has its own set of needs and parameters of negotiations. For example, with the current technological advancement, a virtual/online store has its unique approach towards successful business negotiations compared to much physical business. But among all these, there are a standard set of considerations that every entrepreneur should master in the quest to fruitful talks;

Preparation is paramount; failing to prepare is a better route to preparing to fail. You must qualify before engaging in any negotiation conversation. You must develop and understand your intentions and what to get out of the process. It is a clear way to avoid emotional distractions that derail you from your plans. Additionally, there are key things to check here;

  • Do a thorough background check of other parties in the negotiation to understand their bio, history, profiles, and recommendations among much additional relevant information.
  • Review history of similar deals completed by other parties and the terms explored in the process.
  • Get to explore offerings and pricing of the direct competitors of the party you are engaging in negotiation.

Going to negotiations, you must have your best foot forward. Preparation ensures clear-conscious, confidence, stamina and energy to get best on the deal.

Keep your ego and emotions on the check; allowing your emotions to control the show ruin the entire negotiations. It’s necessary to cap your ego and approach the conversation with a neutral mindset, and it ensures free and objective thinking under extraordinary circumstances in a positive spirit of finding common ground. Having fixed mindset can’t go well with the principle of negotiation on giving and take.

Do you know your strengths and weaknesses? You must do self-evaluation to understand your areas of potential and weakness. It is a better way to determine and strategies on how to play your cards while approaching the negotiation table. You must be completely honest here to save yourself from any possible exploitation. What is it that you bring to the table that the other party can’t? And vice versa. It provides a better and fair position in the negotiation chessboard.

Listen keenly and understand the offer tabled; Get to understand the critical element of the proposal tabled. Offer price, proposed work, goods/services involved, timeframe, warranties or terms and conditions. In case you are placed to push the initial offer, you have to be bold and raise the negotiation up and ride on the upper hand advantage to get best out of what you need. You need to listen keenly to the other party and understand the critical issues raised and respond appropriately. Trying to take exclusive control of the conversation dents the process.

Everything must be professional and courteous; A good conversation should be free of prejudice, abuses or any intimidating environment. A definite plus collaborative tone away from high unnecessary emotions will lead to a common ground and progress towards closing a deal. Developing a positive long-term relationship with the parties involved should be a priority for any negotiation. It’s all possible if the whole process is exclusively professional

What’s your exit strategy; Not all the talks will go through as planned. Having a plan to walk away when things don’t work out will leave from the point of strength. You must never place all your hopes on one deal, it’s disastrous and can be a trap to make a grave mistake that will have a long-term effect on your business. You have to believe and understand your intention towards the negotiation while remaining objective. Losing on a deal full of bullying and intimidations, leaves with nothing to lose but an opportunity position yourself for a better sale in the future.

Who is the ultimate decision maker? You must be able to determine and understand the authority of the party you involve in the negotiation. It’s very frustrating to go through a tedious conversation and end up with discontinuation due to lack of consent from person-in-charge. Such discussions are pointless and a waste of time, it’s wise to ensure you engage the real person with the approvals and decision-making authority.

Time, time, time; time is a big enemy to many deals. The longer you prolong the agreement, the more the chances of situations that may derail the whole process. It doesn’t necessarily mean rushing to concessions but being swift in every moves made. Have your team prepare a ready agreement document to keep the negotiation momentum at bay.

Why many Small business are currently embracing Outsourcing

The business ecosystem is rapidly changing. The need for a competitive edge, creativity/innovation plus highly talented and qualified personnel is an unavoidable part of business growth strategy. SMEs are also feeling the need to keep up with the dynamics of their survival. SMEs owners need to understand better why they must move away from the traditional way of running a business to professional way of doing things. We are past the time when the sole owner of the company would single-handedly undertake business duties regardless of his/her expertise. Currently, productivity must be a top priority of any business regardless of size, age or nature. Small business must be handled as a serious investment with the expectation of better returns based on the strategies put in place.

Sustaining workforce that is required to deliver on business ever-changing environment and capacity is a challenge for many SMEs. Most of the business are forced to force the few existing staffs to overstretch to other duties they are disabled. Business owners find themselves strained that they can’t channel enough efforts towards business growth. It’s true that most small businesses remain stagnant over time due to many manageable factors. It’s upon a small business to examine itself based on strengths, weaknesses, threats, opportunities to maximise to its advantage. From this position, the firm can face competition, creativity/innovation, technological advancements, and market dynamics among other business elements in a better way. All this brings about the concept of outsourcing for small business. It hasn’t been fully considered by lots of small companies, but it’s a better option to go considering the current technological age and challenging operating environment. For the chunk of SMEs that haven’t thought outsourcing, this is what you need to know:

A chance to access the experts; it’s a dream for every business to incorporate highly qualified and talented personnel to drive business activities and agendas. Looking outside far away from geographical limitations, an SME owner has the chance to contract the best expert from multiple talents at disposal to fit in the specific business niche, i.e. digital marketing.

Reduced cost of business operation; One of the surest means to maximise profitability is to slice down costs. Through outsourcing, SMEs can curb down expenditures on rent, office space, equipment, employee benefits, and transport costs etc. which are necessary for physical employees. The savings from these costs can be easily be channelled towards the revenue-generating capital.

More time for focus; delegating some business duties to experts saves SME owner from multitasking which in most cases has been draining business productivity. Outsourcing will give the owner perfect time work on business growth strategies for the benefits business long-term survival. The move goes well in establishing business priorities that is customer-centred.

Reduced risks; Business risks are inevitable in any business environment which is always changing, from competition, technological advancement, market to government regulations. Through outsourcing, SMEs tends to avoid any of such associated risks as the contracted service providers manage the risks on your behalf and are better placed to prevent risks in their niche of expertise.

Accelerated efficiency; As a small business, being exempted from doing costly business mandates such as market research, marketing burden of which trickles down to customers is a reprieve for your business. From the economies of scale point of view, this gives a firm that little competitive advantage.

Increasing demand for remote working; the current entrepreneurial space is giving attention to the remote operation. Most experts and businesses are going the same direction. Many employees are also more comfortable with jobs that are flexible enough to allow remote working. It’s also upon the SMEs to embrace these changes get in touch with freelancers who are affordable, experienced and readily available to perform business duties without extra business burden on training as well as other overheads.

Having gotten some insights on why SMEs should consider outsourcing, some essential business functions that may feel easier to be handled by experts regardless of the stage of your business. It’s proving to be cost-effective and productive in the long run for startups or existing SMEs.

Bookkeeping; Multitasking hurts business productivity. Many SMEs struggle with this vital business element and end up with non updated financial records, no clear financial instruments making it even difficult to evaluate, analyse and control business performance. You can’t allow your business to continue committing such financial mistakes. It’s best to contract experienced team with the right technology to professionally handle your business financials at an affordable cost.

Payroll; Any mistake from bringing about tax audits which may be at the end costly to SME. The numerous regulations and tax laws for salaries require merely an expert with in-depth experience to curb the risks of making the costly mistakes, omissions and improper filing that may occur when the owner single-handedly run the show.

Virtual assistant; SME owner running the business solo may find him/herself strained by series of many smaller tasks that keep accumulating a lot of time. As the CEO of your business, the focus should be towards strategising for venture growth. It’s timely to higher an expert to help in administrative tasks to save time. The advantage here is that it’s less costly as the business have to pay only for hours duties were handled rather than spending more on full-time assistant which must be paid regardless of the job performed.

Digital marketing; Digital marketing is unavoidable for any business. Small business should seek the assistance of the experts on how better to go about this whole concept to achieve business productivity. Hiring digital marketing professional helps leverage digital medium that best fits the business needs within the budget standards. Some of the critical areas to check includes; social media management, content marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Email marketing and web analytics. Each of these areas has a unique contribution towards business growth when timely and adequately used.

Areas of business to outsource isn’t restricted to the few highlighted in this article. It’s upon every single company to outsource based on its weakness and goals. Comparing the cost of hiring full-time employee and outsourcing should as well be used as a guiding element towards any decision making.

WHAT YOU MUST KNOW BEFORE BUYING A SMALL BUSINESS

Owning a business is a dream for many people. In several interactions and forums, entrepreneurship agenda always arise. Reading from the conversations, employed, unemployed or even self-employed, many are thinking of a side hustle, starting a new business or buying ownership of an existing venture. The truth is, a good number is in the race of trying to fit somewhere in the entrepreneurial space and get things running. Among this group, many have great business ideas, finances and resources but don’t know the way to get things started or make that much prudent decision with the general risks around the business. Several factors need to be considered, learnt and evaluated before making any move.

Buying an existing business is also a perfect route to business ownership. Some may consider it miss or a hit considering the risks involved and the merits it pertains. For the past few days, I have been offering advice to a young entrepreneur that was on the verge of buying an existing small business but was still uncertain of her move. To her, it was an exciting opportunity that she didn’t wish to let go. Through the interaction, we came up with critical considerations that she must over check before making any move, designed the right questions that must be answered by herself and the current owner of the business she was gearing up to purchase. All these to help break the uncertainty and sharpen up the decision-making process. This one experience, gave birth to this article to highlight what one needs to consider before buying a small business. Multiple small companies are up for sale, business brokers all over with numerous enticing packages that may look appealing to the eye until essential questions and interrogation are done to understand the deal.

When you decide to buy an existing firm, it means you are purchasing cash flows from the existing customer base. Once you have identified your target business it’s wise to undertake a vigorous due diligence prior to tabling offer to purchase or starting negotiations.

Are you really interested in buying the business?
Official negotiations, data gathering or determining due diligence can’t kick off without assurance of your interest in the targeted business. As a buyer, you must take time to ask yourself several questions to understand if this might be the right choice for business purchase for you. As a buyer, you must never be over excited and carried away with the purchase only to regret later on. You must internalise these:

  • Why do you want to buy the business?
  • Do you exhibit the interest, expertise & experience to run the business successfully?
  • What if you could start that similar business entirely from scratch?
  • Are you ready to be the sole owner of the business or consider a partnership?
  • Do you have the financial muscles to afford the business?
  • What parts of the business do you intend to buy?
  • What’s the nature of competition?

These questions go well in articulating your interests, financial ability and goals in relations to the business you are buying.

What’s the seller’s motive?
As a buyer, you must question the actual reason is compelling the seller to sell the business. The goals must be keenly interrogated and should always be anywhere near integrity and business productivity. The answers will help you as a prospective buyer to understand the general business dynamics and make a judgment if the move is a good investment.

How are the sales blueprints?
It’s necessary to check the sales pattern of the business over time to determine the efficiency of the company. The blueprints will also help you predict the business output in the future.

Request for the Business’ financial records
Checking financial records gives you an upper hand in understanding the business you intend to purchase. Consider checking and reviewing;

  • Profit& loss accounts and balance sheets (preferably last two FYs)
  • List of assets included in the sale.
  • Income tax returns
  • Current year financials

It’s key to pull apart the financial records and prove their accuracy to avoid any manufactured exaggerations of figures to entice purchasing and get an accurate picture of the business.

How was business valuation done?
You have to understand and ask the seller or their agent how they came up with the asking price. The price must be fair & reasonable considering the business profitability and asset. You may think to ask the vendor the following:

  • Was the valuation based on internal calculations or entirely independent appraisal?
  • In case appraisal was conducted, can the vendor share it with you the buyer?
  • What are the parameters for negotiations for the asking price?
  • What’s the goodwill value of the firm?
  • Retain or not retain existing staff?

In most cases, employee entitlement is never transferred to the new owner when only purchasing the business’ assets. It’s upon the new owner to evaluate whether to retain wholly or partly the entire staff based on the business strategy and goals. As a buyer, you only chose what will work best for you considering the performance records of the employees.

Does the business have standing liabilities?
It’s upon you the buyer to determine if the firm has any outstanding debts. You must also check if there is any refunds or warranties still existing. Liabilities must undergo reviewing, to avoid inheriting unstable business structure.

What’s the business framework?
Close evaluation of business structure gives you an advantage in understanding the smoothness of business operation in the current setup. Get time to interact with the current owner to know how things have been running, what’s working out and not working out. Evaluation helps in developing a stable business structure in the future.

Do you have the necessary documentation?
As a serious buyer, you must work in hand with the seller and check, verify critical business financial documents to erase any dangers found. You can also seek legal assistance in checking and signing various legal documentation such as purchase agreement, lease agreement.

As much as buying an existing business can be exciting, it also comes up with its set of challenges. It’s always wise for the buyer to do necessary homework and due diligence to get into a viable and reputable business. It’s never a crime to take time and understand yourself and the company you targeted before penning down the purchasing agreement.

Why Experience marketing is necessary for SMEs in the current business trends

People will forget what you said People will forget what you did But people will never forget how you made them feel. ~ Maya Angelou. Poet & Philosopher

Fulfilment of a business is seeing a smile of a fully satisfied customer whenever he/she purchases and appreciate your products/services. Customer engagement is a strategic step towards appealing to the target audience. Most entrepreneurs are appreciating the value of customer engagement experience and are positioning consumers to be part of their business growth.

The current business trends shows that experience /experiential marketing is key to all businesses regardless of nature or size. Experiential marketing involves igniting emotional connection with customers to love and appreciate your product/service by means of sensory triggers.

This aspect of marketing is timely for all kind of business and can be strategized and implemented to fit in every business financial muscles and resources.

Going by the report by Event Marketing Institute, events and experiences contributes to 74% positive insights from customers in relations to a business. Also, continuous studies shows millennials preferring buying out of experience to buying physical items. Similar to generation Z, this generation cherish experiences than collecting materials. They will always talk, share their experiences with their network circles about an event, exhibition, function, concert. With the rise social media, this has been more efficient.

The task largely lies on a business to work towards a memorable and impactful event that will ensure positive impressions and top engagement with customers. This goes long way towards lifetime brand loyalty.

Why SMEs should consider experiential marketing.

  • A chance to stand out : The advertising space is so crowded with several messages that consumers are expected to hear. Experience marketing gives SMEs chance to strategize and organize a memorable item and trigger engagement with customers to have the positive impressions with the brand.
  • It penetrates through the current ads obstacles : Interestingly, most customers are ‘fed up’ with the many ads on mainstream media and ignores ads on several several live stream channels. Studies shows customers are trying hard to avoid the so many ads and opts for ads free live stream program. Despite these obstacles, SMEs have to cater for these customers who don’t watch these ads and drive out an impactful marketing. Experience marketing gives the chance for one-to-one engagement with customers in a more pleasing, emotionally friendly way to create a lasting impression.
  • It goes well with millennials : Millennials can’t be ignored in the current business trends, studies shows that they have a mega purchasing power and holds a lot to growth of several business. SMEs likewise, must position themselves to avenues that are more appealing and satisfying to millennial generation. They no longer fancy traditional marketing platform. This generation cherish value in experience. Events, environment, functions that speaks their language is more satisfying and stimulates emotional senses for lifetime memories. Experience marketing provides the perfect match for their desires.
  • It’s a platform to realize compelling interaction : With the cluttered ads, it’s a priority for every single business to focus on customer engagements to build an appealing brand. Experience marketing provides the chance for one-to-one engagement with customer in a memorable manner. Organizing or attending an event that resonates well with your business/service boost the engagement and experience. Impactful and satisfying event will keep customer talks rolling even further to more platforms to the advantage of the business brand.
  • Better way towards mega social amplification : Social media has been a platform for sharing and communicating brands within short time. From trending hashtags, viral videos to blogs continues to stand out in the current consumer market place. Experiential marketing achieves more through it’s grounded physical interaction. It goes deep into digging into customers behehavior that triggers what matters on social amplification.

Tips to make experiential marketing productive for SMEs.

  • Optimize social media : SMEs must integrate social media tool in the marketing campaigns. It goes well with sharing brands to larger audience. In case of experiential marketing, SMEs can focus on posting online and encouraging customers to join in sharing experiences with their networks. Prior to an event, postings can be made to create a compelling mood, excitement to hype the event so as to attract more customers. During the event, live updates, pictures, videos should be updated to reach both online and offline audiences whom will later follow updates.
  • Build partnership : SMEs can team up with non competitive brands to organize a bigger event and attract more customers. For example, SME looking to host a fashion show can partner with a bakery to offer snacks or even transport company to offer transport services to the attendees, this achieves much towards brand advancement of various business and positive experiences on customers. It also help in saving costs for organizing event which may be a challenge for several SMEs.
  • More focus on location : SMEs will definitely find it hard to attract larger audience. It’s very important to consider location and take an event to the customers in a more accessible and reliable place that they will notice or access. Hosting an event in a public place assures more attention.
  • Create a lasting experience : Every event organized must be appealing to the audience and trigger emotional memories. SMEs can organize event within their financial capabilities that ensure one-to-one customer engagement for lifetime memories.

Experiential marketing is an important business trend that SMEs should give attention considering the current business dynamics. Customer engagement and connection to your business brand is an aspect that matters most to every business. Learning from consumer behavior and winning them over through emotional triggers and living remarkable memories is truly a frontier.

“MOST EMPLOYEES AREN’T HAPPY WITH THEIR EMPLOYERS AND JOBS” What does it mean to business?

A happy employee translates to a productive worker and profitable business in the long run. This seems to have not gotten well with multiple employers and businesses over time. There are shocking trends of studies that have been around for a while, that must worry most of businesses and entrepreneurs. Majority of the research across the globe are singularly pointing at a higher number of employees extremely unhappy with their jobs and employers.

According to a study by CV-Library, 2018, UK’s top independent job site, about 55.6% UK employees are unsatisfied with their current jobs. Interestingly, 57.4% beliefs that leaving the job isn’t the best solution. Among the many underlying issues that frustrate them includes; poor payment, poor organizational culture, limited room for personal development and progression, unreliable working hours, boredom due to unchallenging tasks, mistreatment from employers. This is just a glimpse as to why human resource managers and business owners should take a moment and give some listening ear and priority to these trends.

In Kenya, a study by Brighter Monday, 2018, a leading jobs placement site, about 80% of workers feels unsatisfied with their job. Interestingly, the majority aren’t wishing to refer their friends or family members to the organizations. A chunk here, the youths in their earlier career stages are more willing to quit, but again the same study points out that the long-serving employees aren’t ready to leave their current jobs. Job security, salary and proximity to work are the leading consideration for many workers. Such findings from Kenya brings into the picture the state of employees in many developing economies. Business stakeholders must spark a serious conversation to counter this increasing but silent trend.

Human resource management is a very complex topic that touches on key areas translating to business productivity. In this article, I would like to narrow it down to the entrepreneurs why they need to be concerned about the increasing number of unhappy employees, businesses must understand the impact of an unhappy employee to a firm, what should entrepreneurs consider to counter this trend for business productivity. Those are the true agendas that our businesses and employees yearn to see addressed.

The unhappiness of an employee is as a result of several demotivating factors within and outside the business. Poor remuneration, lack of recognition, a clash of personalities, lack of work-life balance, limited room for progression, toxic working environment, laxity to technological advancement, mistreatment from bosses and unreliable working hours are the top causes of employee unhappiness. With the technological advancement, more employees have been advocating for telecommuting. Majority especially millennial feels more comfortable working remotely. Businesses that aren’t flexible enough to guarantee its employee such options are leaving more staff dissatisfied.

Unsatisfied and demotivated employee is disastrous to any business regardless of its size or nature. The impact of a disgruntled employee is very costly to a firm, many have lost millions of shillings due to the same.

Reduced productivity; there is a direct correlation between an employee satisfaction and business productivity. When employees are dissatisfied, they can’t perform as expected thus a negative impact on business productivity. Cases of laziness, laxity and procrastination will always come up. The end result will fall on customers whom will experience poor customer services, poor quality products and general fall of quality assurance standards. Because your business can’t achieve enough revenue, its sustainability will be threatened.

Negative reputation on brand; It always takes very little time to destroy a brand that took a long time to build. Issues promoting employee dissatisfaction have an impact on the worker’s service delivery, comments to external customers. For example, information about mistreatment and exploitation of workers/customers can spread fast in this social media era. Competitors can optimize the opportunity as well to completely bury your business. Workers can build and bring down a business easily depending on how they are handled.

Reduced revenue; Employees who are only in the business just to support their family, they care less about the business performance, such workers are dangerous for a business. That’s a typical example of dissatisfied staff, they easily lose the work ethics and fills it with a negative attitude. Obviously, in such cases, sales targets can’t be met thus lowering business revenues. Also, the dented reputation scares away customers thus fewer sales.
Reduction in company loyalty; the unhappy employee always adopts the ‘I don’t care’ attitude, they can hardly give their total efforts towards improving the business. Workers who might have been working harder and producing massive results will definitely take back seats. Lesser transformative ideas will be flowing to scale-up the business.

Injuries and damages; Employees negative attitude lead to numerous negligence, destruction of properties and even accidents. This can easily put a business in a financial distress to contain the very many injuries and damages.

Investing in employee satisfaction is key to any business. Employees play a critical role in business sustainability and shouldn’t be underrated. It’s important for employers to work closely with the workers. Swiftly identify and amicably address any issue that may tilt the staff morale. The motivating factors should be used to turn tables around by entrepreneurs that may have failed in this case.