In an effort to empower Ocean View business owners, a budding entrepreneur has offered her consultation services to address the needs of the community.
In a discussion with the group of 15 owners, Siobhan Pheiffer, a business consultant and the organiser of the business forum, was able to identify some of their challenges.
The business forum, held in collaboration by Siobhan Jozelle Consulting and The Community Development Foundation (CDF) Western Cape, was deemed a great success by organisers and business owners who attended.
Dawood Davis, a retired carpenter, said while he had been taking on some odd jobs here and there, he would like to start his own business and empower others in Ocean View through job creation. “I want to employ people to do the job. What’s happening in Ocean View is that the youth are roaming around (without work).”
But to empower them, he said: “I need to get registered and get a tax number. I need to start my business – I don’t even know how to register.”
Business owner Denzel Petersen has been running a taxi service in Ocean View for several years. Through the years he was able to connect with like-minded people to form a group that runs these services. He said their offering is one of few in the community and they would like to grow.
“What we’re struggling with now is, in order for us to have an association in Ocean View – the same as a taxi association – we need to have 12 operators. The problem is to find 12 operators with the same mindset and share the same ideas and vision as the group. We have eight people now and need to get four more,” he said.
Another business owner, Anwhar Adams, sells natural oils which relieve pain, dry skin and lips, headaches, cuts and scrapes, insect bites and more.
While people are always interested in the products he retails at various markets, he said his main challenge is expanding his reach.
He asked: “Across the country, they’re wanting to know how they can get my products; that is what I’m struggling with. Maybe I could do a webpage – just for products and feedback – where people can go on and I can work directly with the people?”
Wafaa Adburahman from CDF touched on business ethics during the session.
“Ethics in business are very important, and what irks me is that when we do things for other people, we want to be fancy because they can pay that money. But when we do things for the community, we think it can be second-hand. Even if you do things for your community, you need to do it professionally,” she urged.
Pheiffer said she hoped to have the answers to these and other questions raised at the forum in two weeks’ time – in time for the next forum meeting.
“My offering includes business registration and free mentoring but the other part of that is to bring in people to do what I cannot – people who can come and talk or hold workshops.”
A representative from Sanlam will attend the next meeting to assist the residents with financial education.
V To join the next session, to inquire about fees or for more information, contact Siobhan on firstname.lastname@example.org.