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This is It

January 1, 2013

It’s the first day of the New Year. As a broke entrepreneur in Africa, you probably still enjoyed yourself last night. After all, someone is always throwing a holiday celebration where, undoubtedly, there is plenty of food and drink- with great dancing music. Yes, it is one of the simple joys of  doing business in Africa, you can always find an option for a holiday party.

But now, the first day of the New Year has hit and you are feeling slightly uncomfortable in your soul, and no, it has nothing to do with the local liquor you drank last night. Instead you find yourself feeling uneasy, wondering if you have really made the right decision to become an African entrepreneur. After all, you are literally just barely making it financially and there always seems to be some new expense.  Indomie, egg sandwiches or some other affordable local dish,  have become your comfort foods and you really are starting to hate the fact that the electricity is unreliable and so is the landlord….is he ever coming to fix the air conditioning….probably not.

So now you find yourself aimlessly wandering the streets of your adopted town looking for some sign that Africa is where you belong. Some of you may even employ the services of a spiritual guide…after all, when in Rome. But today, know that this serves as your sign. Doing business in Africa is tough, but we all know its well worth it. It is why we have left the comfort of our homes and families to become African entrepreneurs.

So yes, there will be some days, weeks and even months where you feel you should cut your losses and go.  And perhaps some of you should. However, for those with a good plan, who work are willing to work hard and overcome challenges- you have come to the right place, you are doing the right thing and it will pay off.

So there is no reason to look for your sign anymore, because this is it. Welcome to the land of African entrepreneurs where the stakes are high, but so are the payoffs. No need for a sign, because this is it.

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