Our “So you want to be…” series aims to help you in choosing a career by featuring a practising professional to tell us what to expect in their field. This week we speak to Bheki Nkosi (26), an educational entrepreneur who attended the Raymond Ackerman Academy of Entrepreneurial Development, and runs a start-up called Eventful Ceremonies in Pretoria. They organise school outings, co-ordinate graduation ceremonies as well as go around schools offering creative, fun and interactive workshops and activities for the youth.
Live SA: Did you study for what you are doing?
Bheki: I did a 6-month course with the Raymond Ackerman Academy of Entrepreneurship Development (RAAED). After completing that I also became part of their graduate program, where I received practical skills to help me run my business.
Live SA: What course would you recommend to aspiring entrepreneurs to take?
Bheki: A business management course. If you want to be an entrepreneur, you need to familiarise yourself with the business side of things.
Live SA: Give us a day in your life as an entrepreneur?
Bheki: It varies from day to day. But, as soon as I get to the office, I look through my daily planner, which will give me an inkling of what needs to be done throughout the day. Sometimes I don’t even make it to the office because I have back-to-back meetings, events to oversee or workshops to attend at RAAED.
Live SA: What is the most challenging part of being an entrepreneur?
Bheki: I think it would be convincing new clients why they should pay for my services; what makes us different and what they will gain from this particular service. There is a lot of competition, so you need to always be on your A-game or someone else will get the gig.
Live SA: What have been your highlights so far?
Bheki: My biggest highlight has to be seeing my business grow. We have grown from having just two employees to nine staff members.
Live SA: What would put someone off about being an entrepreneur?
Bheki: The risks and compromises that come with it. It’s intimidating. Not having a stable income and not knowing what tomorrow brings often scares people off.
Live SA: Is the money good?
Bheki: It sustains me and the company.
Live SA: Finish the sentence: “You shouldn’t do this job if you’re…”
Bheki: You shouldn’t do this job if you’re not passionate about your market and the service you’re providing.
Photograph: Siyabonga Mkhasibe