Sunday, 19 October 2014

The start up ....

Having traded the corporate world for the world of the start-up entrepreneur, I find myself wanting to record the journey for some odd reason. Perhaps it is mostly to assist my ailing memory (at the ripe old age of 37) or perhaps to help others that may find themselves caught in the endless cycle of monthly salary slips and financed cars and houses. 

Is this going to be a successful venture, I have no doubt about that. I have faith in my Father in Heaven to prepare the way. 

For so long I have been wanting to begin my own company but every time the salary gets paid in at the end of the month, the comforting feeling that you get of knowing that no matter how hard you work or how lazy you have been (yes, we are all lazy at times!) the numbers will always be there in terms of personal finance. 

Where did  it all begin?
My own personal journey in the corporate world began in 2000 when I started as a graduate industrial engineer working for BMW South Africa as an Industrial Engineer in the production control environment. The long and the short of it - what a great company to work for. Solid systems, good people and a product that the world desires! I could not have planned a better start myself! 

The journey
After 3 years there, the entrepreneurial dream already started to emerge. I was offered a chance to join a small engineering firm. The owner was looking to retire and wanted to handover to a new manager / owner. Thinking back, it was a great opportunity and I learnt more than I had bargained for! You can imagine the move from a highly structured German company to a small South African Engineering firm consisting of no more than 10 employees. Looking back, I was probably too young and didn't see the opportunity for what it may have been. I left there after two years and joined the airports company that administers the airports in South Africa as a projects engineer.

After only a year here and our first daughter changing our lives and priorities we looked to the 'Platteland' of South Africa to get away from the rat race.

We ended up in a little known town (at that time) by the name of Kathu in the fairly remote Northern Cape province. A once quiet mining town, sitting here now and seeing the rate of expansion is quite remarkable. It is certainly no longer the 'platteland' that it used to be.

We spent 7 wonderful years here and were blessed with two more children - more than any other place before, this became home. 

Next, we looked to make our first move out of South Africa and it turned out to be to the tourists paradise that is Namibia - bordering the North West of South Africa, it often feels like just another province of the same country ... but fact is, it isn't.

I was given the 'golden opportunity' that many mining engineers dream of - being part of a start up mega mine in a wonderfully safe country with an awesome family lifestyle! We truly enjoyed the 13 months there and would do it all over again.

I learnt more in that year than I ever would have in an established corporate mining house. Good and bad. More than anything in my life, this was the trigger to move into the world of entrepreneurship. In October 2014 we leaped ... in faith....

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