Sunday, 17 May 2020

The more things stay the same


Do yourself the favour and Google the meaning of this saying. Wikipedia has it as:
Turbulent changes do not affect reality on a deeper level other than to cement the status quo.”

There is even a song from Bon Jovi about it, with the same name:
“The more things change the more they stay the same
The more things change the more they stay the same

Ah, is it just me or does anybody see
The new improved tomorrow isn't what it used to be
Yesterday keeps coming around, it's just reality
It's the same damn song with a different melody
The market keeps on crashing

Tattered jeans are back in fashion
Instead of records, now it's mp3s
I tell you one more time with feeling
Even though this world is reeling
You're still you and I'm still me
I didn't mean to cause a scene
But I guess it's time to roll up our sleeves

The more things change the more they stay the same
The same sunrise, it's just another day
If you hang in long enough they say you're coming back
Just take a look, we're living proof and baby that's a fact
You know the more things change the more they stay the same
The more things change the more they stay the same

You're either running round in circles or you're running out of time
Everybody somewhere either 12, 3, 6 or 9
The times they are a-changing
We're here to turn the page
It's the same old story but it's told a different way

The more things change the more they stay the same
The same sunrise, it's just another day
If you hang in long enough they say you're coming back
Just take a look, we're living proof and baby that's a fact
You know the more things change the more they stay the same
Never and forever just keep coming back again
Don't hold out for tomorrow or hold onto yesterday

The more things change the more they stay the same
The more things change the more they stay the same
The more things change the more they stay the same”

People don’t deal well with change, or so we thought. The lockdown period showed us that most people adapt quickly enough to ensure that they preserve whatever is important to them, to ensure that they remain relevant.

Today we mark the big change at Spesres. We spent the last 4 months planning for a change in the way we dress ourselves. The way we talk to clients and students. They way we present ourselves, our brand. And, finally, here it is. Our new coat of paint.


Our main attributes are that:
  • We are strategic in our aim
  • We care
  • We communicate well, internally, and externally
  • We are practical



These are fundamentals that exemplifies what we stand for, while also pointing towards the direction we are aiming for.

Reality is that we have not changed our priorities. We have not changed our DNA. We have not looked at dramatic shifts in operations or what we aim to achieve.

This new brand represents what we have always build on, what we desired to achieve, what we believe in. It assists us to define what we stand for, to communicate more effectively and to ensure we speak within a unified approach.

Yes, we have changed, but “the more we stay the same” is a promise. We will still train student; we will same deliver quality. We will still be relevant. We still aim to ensure that every promise we make is fulfilled.

We remain Spesres


Thursday, 16 April 2020

Entrepreneurship


I have the fortune to work with some very intelligent people.
I also have the fortune of working with some very experienced individuals.
In certain cases, these are the same people.

I a casual conversation I realised again that we are never to old, intelligent, experienced, or wise to learn something new. The only limiting factor to learning is ourselves.

At Spesres we train students in entrepreneurship. We train students in theory of business, and how to set it up. We also endeavour to get students to start thinking about how they can start something where they are, with what they have and with the current skillset they possess. What we might lack, is the knowledge I gained from a casual conversation, so here goes

For you to really be an entrepreneur you need 3 basic things:

1.       Believe in what you do
You might be on to something great. It might be something that does not yet exist. Or it might exist, but not in your area. It might exist, and be in your area, but you believe you can be better at it.

Whatever your idea, if you do not believe in it, how do you expect others to?
Read up on your project/field. Study the competition. Know your value. Trust your instincts and believe in what you do.

2.       Have the tenacity to continue
It is not going to be easy. At some stage it might also not feel worth it anymore. Friends will become foes. Failure is inherently part of the process. BUT the success will be sweet.

You need to graft hard and despite the critics, keep chipping away to ensure you succeed. It is you against the world. Make every second count.

Celebrate the small victories.

3.       Delay your gratification

Some of the biggest companies in the world started with the original owner being rock bottom (go and read the story of KFC). There is every chance that cashflow will be a nightmare to manage. At stages easy. Others very tight. Mostly just scraping through.

When you make it big (a large transaction, or two), be sure that you save up for the dry months. (do not “chow” the money). When you are in the desert, be sure to pay staff and critical suppliers first. Never blend your personal and business finances, they are two entities.

Grow the business so that it can be an asset, not a liability. And have an exit plan.

In short, if you keep at it, you will one day succeed

(PS: Thanks to my source)

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Do the right thing

During the lockdown there are a million things on the internet, social media and WhatsApp doing the rounds to get people motivated and working. There are so many things getting us down: Potential financial impact of the lockdown, job losses, lack of exercise, loneliness, etc, etc, etc.

No matter what we do and the plans we are trying to make, there are so many pitfalls and roadblocks around, that normal is no longer normal. We have to either compromise, adjust or get left behind. It's a harsh reality.

During the past week I attended a Zoom briefing of Doxa Deo Brooklyn for small businesses, with an economic outlook of what is currently taking place as well as some practical advise to ensure you keep the boat afloat.

The image below was relevant, especially the 3 points on the bottom right:


To make it practical:

Support people and businesses affected by lockdowns

Proverbs 10 verse 9 reads: Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.

I do not believe that anyone wants to harm others deliberately. For you to support your own business, but also your staff, consider the following:

  1. Submit your claim to the UIF
  2. Initiate income protection claims
  3. Negotiate with your creditors as far as possible
  4. Discuss cashflow etc with your bank

Prepare to get back to work

Harsh as it may sound, 2 Thessalonians 3 verse 10 reads: For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.

This is the ideal time to reorganize your business and concentrate on the aspects that made it a business in the first place. Growth is always good, but also relaxes your expense side a bit. Make sure all expenses are critical, cut the rest.

Time to be a realist, not a socialist.

Prepare to accelerate the recovery


Pray for your staff, pray for your creditors/suppliers. Also pray for your clients, and assist them to keep THEIR clients, else they cannot afford you anymore.

Be innovative. It is the time of change, drive the change.

Do not link your personal finance and your business finances. Make the hard decisions, and commit to them long-term. That is for both yourself and your business.

Take guidance from the government initiatives. Pray for wisdom in the government.

In conclusion. Change is not always good. Good change is good. And as Alan Platt always says, good news is only good news if it is good news. Good news is only good news if it includes you.