Keeping African Business Real – Working In an African Corporate World!

The African Employer

This is  a guide to  surviving the  African  Jungle….the corporate one, with loads of  indigenous businesses and African owned businesses, a lot of  people are  choosing to  ditch conventional  employment to try their hand at working with  like minded others….hooray for  growth and here’s a guide for keeping it real….


A recent encounter with some sinister brand of Africans led me to wonder what manner world we want to create for our children, and this took to the Mothership as I like to call it – Africa. You see, our world is made up of  a range of nations and Africa is a whole fusion of diversity and a thorough spectrum of cultures and opportunities. In  this regard, we must realise that it is us who make up these nations and these groups and effectively, our individual and collective contribution determine whether what we send up into the  skies is a  fragrant frankincense of a mere stink of bad  governance, corruption and mayhem made real! We boast of feeding the world and owning its resources, how much of this do we manage and how much of our “command’ results in food on tables and clothes on backs.

I was told a while ago, that as a woman in business you have to work twice as hard to be considered half as good…. Needless to say all challenges add Africa to their list and so it is for the African business woman. This blog will  explore on the  needs of Africans and their need to  progress in  business and it will address with  passion the cries of the  rising Nubians

that  are chartering  new areas and  making a  footprint in the  corporate world as well as  waging genuine  wars with economies and   political impediments to  sustainable livelihoods.

I had a run in with an amazing visionary, who dreamt of running a bank and owning a fair section of the universe. Awesome I  thought…however…lets re-visit the  little things….food on the  table, clothes on backs, education  funds and  meeting a wife’s needs beyond bedroom banter. Armed with the proverbial first degree, a bit of travel and some work experience in a multi-national in Africa, like most young people Rugare Ncube chooses to chase his dreams and forget about the things that count! Whilst owning a bank is a noble thought the motives and methodology leaves so much to be desired, I cringe when I hear the word “a black –owned bank!” How do you   move a Pan African agenda when your household is in lack and debt, how do we take our “African Crisis” out of our own  kitchen cupboards first before we change the country and  consequently the  continent?!

Johannesburg city

Have no fear, I will not  bludgeon you with  cute little write ups about how to make your cooking oil run  further and your sugar take you  longer to  go through in the cruel winter! No! We do however need to be honest with each other about the little things that go – BUMP in the   day time! Things that   creep in and   silently slaughter African businesses, misconceptions and false subscriptions to the pan African Agenda as well as that good old historical crutch called politics. Keeping it real!

As an introduction we will discuss rule number one of  working for an  African business- make sure  that  you are signing  on  to an actual business, not a  vision or an dream and need I  say not a  projected project where the  funds ‘ will come’ and “ be  generated” to meet running costs and cover salaries. Pioneering is good, but make sure if you are willing to  go that  route then you must be informed of the  risk and the  liability of the  project prior to  your  lifting a finger to  do  any  work. It is a common thing to utilise well known or respected individuals with their own resources to build individual businesses. Totems and  background are  a favourite for untoward employers…get a  contract!

As a professional be aware of this and safeguard yourself from building someone else’s dreams at the expense of your income and integrity! If the business has no safety net to   pay you in the first month and or you   are being pushed to ‘create” your salary be mindful. Google your prospective employer and cross check any online claims with phone calls, visit and consider awards, accolades as well as lavish or over the top achievements. Chances are most employers will have tasted the good life and know how to appeal to ambitions accordingly, do not fall prey. Social Media is  being manipulated to waylay well- meaning employees You might not only  be  considering working for  an entity  that  cannot sustain you  or as I discovered with  Rugare Ncube, a charismatic   Zimbabwean, raised in the same City of Kings,  of polished accent and well-presented family –  you  could be  aiding a  seasoned con- artist achieve his  untoward purposes! So remember Rule Number one – Check out the Boss and his/her  business credentials – are they legitimate players in the game?



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