By Philes Davis.
The major common denominator amongst feeble-minded Malawians is copying others’ feats. Truth be told, most Malawians lack creativity and opt for somebody to test the waters on their behalf. Worse still, most of such wanna-be entrepreneurs are too lazy to be creative and come up with a unique business idea.
For Fawzia Osman, originality has always been her mantra. Having been groomed to always believe in herself, she had always been harbouring ambitions of starting some unique business.
Being a lover of Art and fashion, Fawzia has always wanted to run some business basing on her passion. Such has always been her dream since time immemorial so it was just a matter of time before that could be realized.
So, after two years of soul-searching, Fawzia Osman discovered her path to stardom. In June 2016, Fawzia Osman opened one of the most unique traditional art and fashion shops on the land, Mkanda (beads).
Located in Lilongwe’s Area 15 (Wig Loft Shop), Mkanda Accessories is the home of beaded accessories ranging from handbags, belts, sandals, beaded cutlery, and bangles among others.
Since its establishment, Mkanda Accessories has won praises and envy amongst Fawzia’s friends and foes alike.
So, how did Fawzia Osman took the first step into this business?
Travelling opens various unknown avenues, so goes the adage.
To Fawzia Osman, her frequent travels outside the country widened her business options as well. She discovered some untapped gold. Being a lover of Arts, she got inspired by some unlikely pieces of art.
“Since I was young, I have always been fascinated by beautiful work of arts and crafts but my inspiration came after I travelled to some African countries and saw the work that is done by Beaders across Africa.” She reveals.
That, also marked the genesis of her art and craft Enterprise, Mkanda.
“Mkanda was born to meet the niche market that is enhancing Jeweler made by Africans. It was also born to preserve the African culture. Since then, it has become a house hold name adorned by both men and women,” says she.
. It is an obvious phenomenon that in Malawi, and elsewhere especially on African setting, being raised by a single mother is no kid’s glove. It is a hassle. That was the same with Fawzia’s life.
“Since I was a kid, my mother has always been my greatest motivator. My mother raised us a single mom and she has been one of women pioneers in Malawi. Her entrepreneurial skills have always inspired me to be where I am today,” she disclosed.
Ever-ambitious Fawzia Osman is dreaming. She sees her Mkanda enterprise growing big in the near future.
“Five years from now, I want to see Mkanda, my business, to have a one stop shop for all beaded things in Malawi and beyond. I want us to expand in international retail shops.”
Her dream is to see Mkanda emerging as one of the biggest employers of Malawian natives so as to assist the government in combating poverty levels in the country,” she reveals.
Message to aspiring business women
To a boss lady out there, or any uptown female who wants to be independent, financially, energetic Fazie has a word or two.
“Stay Motivated. Don’t hesitate. Go for your dreams. Stay motivated!”
That is not all. Enterprising Fawzia bemoans the attitude of some ladies who always think being successful is a one day affair.
“I never built Mkanda Accessorize in a day; it was through hard work and pumping in too much energy in what I had wanted to be. Success has no short-cuts,” she advises.