By Vanessa NYIRENDA.
Dreaming is such an easy meal; every John and Jack does that. However, it takes courage to turn such dreams into reality. It takes more than a nuclear power energy to transform such dreams into tangibles. And this is what separates bambinos from macho men.
In the entrepreneurship world, the song is no different. In our Shangri-La planet, most of us fancy various business ideas. Most of us do fancy a better life as self-employers. But when it comes to realities on the ground, that dream easily evaporates.
A Mzuzu-based youthful entrepreneur, Stonald Chisamba, the owner of Northern Life Printing Press in Mzuzu, is a living example of how determination to pursue one’s dreams pay dividends. He is a model worth emulating as he maneuvered various obstacles enroute to accomplishing his entrepreneurship dream.
Throughout his life, the youthful Stonald had always aspired to live a better life. And what a better life than to be self-employed? So, it was this inner voice that kept him pushing forward; trying A and Bs so as to up hisself on the accomplishment ladder.
To those who had been following him, it was therefore, not an eye-brow-raising phenomenon when, in 2010, he officially established his investment; Northern Life Printing Press.
“I felt I’d done enough home work for me to go full-throttle in establishing my own company. I therefore registered it in September, as a limited company expecting to cover wide range of activities, including printing,” he recalls.
His inspiration was drawn out of his desire to be somewhere where he could manage his life better. He had always been ambitious at ensuring he lives a relatively comfortable life.
“My ambition started growing when I was employed under Bolero Business Bureau where I learnt more about the printing business” he reminisces.
Such an ambition grew upon observing other successful local entrepreneurs.
“I was also very much inspired much by Mulli Brothers Limited. These guys are doing great locally. They’re an example worth emulating,” he observes.
Mzuzu a potential hub to do business
Gone are the days when many regarded Mzuzu as a sick ‘man’ of Malawi where business opportunities could not thrive.
As Stonald testifies, the city is one of the fastest growing centres in the country hence a green belt for various business ventures.
“The fact that many people think that Mzuzu is not a stable place for business gives us an opportunity to do better,” he confessed.
What convinced him that his business was going to be a success?
Ask any successful business personnel, failure is part of success. As the late US president JF Kennedy notes, “Only those who dare to fail greatly can achieve greatly.”
It was such kind of motivations that convinced Stonald that he was going to make it no matter the weather. According to him, that, plus his observation towards poor business practices by his competitors were enough motivation that his business was going to survive.
“I was much convinced after I learnt many people doing this business are offering very expensive prices as compared to our friends in other regions, I thought if I could set up this business but offering relatively low prices, I was going to be successful,” he reveals.
As any other business man, Stonald has ever sailed through turbulent waters. His stand out experience was when his own employees helped themselves with almost all of his firm’s assets.
“I once employed many people who could underrate me as their employer. To make matters worse, they stole literary everything I had owned. I had just remained with a laptop and K5000,” Chisamba recalls.
Despite this, his momentum was never affected. His persistence and assertiveness kept him going.
Listening him articulating issues, one could easily tell that there is a determined young entrepreneur who is geared for success. Chisamba says he wants to uplift his business to another level. That aside, he also wants Northern Life to be a business empire in the near future.
“This is just part of the whole company; I would like Northern Life to be a force to reckon with in the country,” he says.
Advice to young entrepreneurs
Chisamba advices other young entrepreneurs out there to go full throttle and stay focused whenever venturing into a business enterprise.
“There are no half measures in entrepreneurship. One needs to be focused and clearly set what they want in life. That’s the only gate-pass to success,” he advises.