Lessons To Looming Entrepreneurs

Young entrepreneurs are sometimes in a hurry to make it big quickly. Instead of focusing most attention on monetary returns, an entrepreneur should concentrate most of their energy in giving superior service to their customers. That’s the way their businesses will succeed.

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Here are 4 tips to looming entrepreneurs

Delegate:  You cannot do everything yourself. Learn to live with good enough from your team members.

Responsiveness is power: Get back to clients immediately. If you cannot meet their requirements, don’t waste their time; recommend someone else for the task.

Keep time: Don’t be late for meetings and strictly keep to delivery deadlines. This shows respect for other people. If it is unavoidable, do not give excuses; call early to alert your host.

Cushion yourself against difficult times: Have low margin consistent products that can provide cash flow during low seasons.

Take care of yourself: Eat well, drink lots of water, rest, build and sustain strong relationships over the long term.

10 Intriguing Questions with PMS Group Founder, Joanne Mwangi

Joanne Mwangi, founder and CEO, PMS Group (Kenya), cordially shares the nitty gritties about herself and the amazing agency that she founded.

Joanne

1. What was your first job?

My very first job was actually selling vegetables because my mother had a kiosk. She would take us to the kiosk to work after school. I must have been around seven. My father also had a little restaurant in town so during school holidays we went and served. I started working at a very young age

2. Who has had the biggest impact on your career and why?

The one person who has had a really big impact on my success is Vimal Shah [founder and CEO of Bidco Oil Refineries]. He took me under his wing. He used to sit with me and take me through management lessons and tell me what to do to grow my business. He always looks out for me, and always wants to show me how I can I do better and improve. He is always rooting [for me]. He is one person whom I have always felt has my back. I have a lot of respect for him.

3. What parts of your job keep you awake at night?

I haven’t had a chance to worry for a while. I think I worry more about my team than anything else. I am not happy when my team is not happy. I always want my team to be working at optimum. So when I realise that there is some conflict or somebody is going through an issue that bothers me. We have a very family-like culture at PMS so I always want my people’s things to go right so they can work at optimum.

4. What are the top reasons why you have been successful in business?

I think first and foremost is hard work. I am very hard working. I am very committed. When I focus on a goal, I lock target; it’s very hard for me to unlock until I have succeeded. I have that zoom factor. Once I focus, I go. I will do anything to get there.

5. What are the best things about your country, Kenya?

Kenya is just the best country in the whole world. We have got fantastic weather. I have been to many, many countries and there is no place like here. The people are friendly, happy and welcoming. Even more importantly we have got something called peace that many people take for granted. I don’t know how to explain freedom, but for me freedom is being in Kenya. Freedom is just being home. Every time I travel I am just dying to come back home.

6. And the worst?

The worst is poverty. It really pains me because I think it is something that can be dealt with. If we deal with poverty, everything else will be dealt with… from health, ignorance… It is a chicken and egg situation because how do you break out of poverty unless you give people awareness of opportunities? I also don’t think that becoming a social welfare state where people are getting handouts is a solution. It is just about getting people equipped to make the best of what they have because everybody in Kenya is walking on gold. How do we get people to mine their gold? To see these opportunities and actually seize them [and] to have faith and confidence and the belief that ‘I can do it’? I believe it will all start with our education system.

7. Your future career plans?

I want to transition PMS Group to a point where I have divested enough and I have enough investors in the business that I feel that I am not so needed. I want to get to a point where my input is needed at maximum 30%. I have always wanted to write but I haven’t done it because I keep finding excuses. I would like to set a deadline and just write. Thereafter I would want to do more around education. I always wanted to be a teacher. I love kids. I wanted to have many children [but] I only had three (laughs). I wanted many, many children. My outreach for many years has been focused on women but I am starting to branch out to children. I want to adopt one school [and] use my savings, not start some foundation, to transform it. Then I will measure the results and see if I can replicate the same elsewhere to help more children.

8. How do you relax?

I play golf but I am useless. What I really enjoy is going to the gym. It really gives me that Zen. I love music and I love dancing so I will always look for every opportunity, everywhere, to dance. I am a party girl. I am a people person [but] I don’t like crowds. I prefer small groups. In small groups I thrive, I have a fantastic time [and] I unwind. I enjoy doing these things with my kids.

9. What is your message to Africa’s young aspiring businesspeople and entrepreneurs?

I want to tell the young people Africa’s time is now. We are so lucky because we understand the landscape. Foreigners can see the opportunities but they don’t understand our landscape. We just need to see the opportunity and seize it now. Don’t wait for tomorrow. It’s going. So please, can the young people of Africa make sure they seize the opportunity and keep it in Africa.

10. How can Africa realise its full potential?

By unleashing the power of the youth. The future is in the young people. Everyone today who is 30 and under; those are the people who own Africa. It is their collective efforts that are going to change this world. These people succeeding, each one at a time, is what is going to change Africa. The first thing is to make them believe they can and that is social cultural change which is already happening. Second is having role models. Take the case of Equity Bank CEO James Mwangi who was a village boy and is now a global icon. You don’t need to meet him in person for you to be inspired. Any boy in the village can understand that [they] don’t have to have been born rich and taken to the best schools [to believe that] I am good enough and I can achieve anything.

Joanne Mwangi is the founder and CEO of PMS Group. The group has four subsidiaries which offer a wide range of agency services including advertising, public relations, event management, trade promotions, consumer promotions, trade merchandising and marketing strategy development. The group has worked with some of the leading brands in East Africa including British American Tobacco, Bidco Oil Refineries, Safaricom, Reckitt Benckiser, Uchumi Supermarket and East African Breweries.

In 2010 PMS Group became the first woman-owned business and the only one since to be voted number one in the Top 100 SMEs competition in Kenya. Mwangi beat women entrepreneurs from 75 countries in 2009 to emerge winner of the Organisation of Women in International Trade Woman of the Year award. She has received numerous other awards.

Original Source:  howwemadeitinafrica

 

 

Joanna Gow, MD PMS Group Ltd, shares insights on the growth of marketing and public relations industry in Kenya

Interview with Joanna Gow speaks on growth of marketing and public relations industry

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BY FRANKLINE SUNDAY

Kenya’s marketing and public relations industry has witnessed great growth over the past decade, as growing demand from new corporations, small and medium operators, and Government agencies creates new opportunities. Joanna Gow, the managing director of Professional Marketing Services (PMS) Group, a marketing communications agency, spoke to Business Beat on the industry’s evolution, and the opportunities that exist in a digital and social age.

What is driving the growth in the number of communications agencies in the country?

Increased competitiveness, ease of doing business and high foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows into different sectors has increased competition among consumer-facing companies. These factors are giving rise to fast-growing, high-potential medium-sized businesses that can compete with multinational corporations. This in turn has created a market for agencies to cater to the growing need for brand positioning and marketing communications services.

We have seen Government agencies, ministries and counties taking up marketing and communications services. What has this meant for the industry?

Devolved governance and increased inclusiveness necessitate the need for the Government to engage and communicate effectively. Its increased use of communications services, shift to digital platforms and increased spending on public projects has also created more opportunities for PR and communications.

Are there any differences between handling a Government account and a private sector one?

We are currently working with a number of Government entities in their rebranding processes since they now understand the need to refresh their brands with new ideologies and values. I must say there is a big shift in mind-set within Government, and it has come to understand the importance of communications and PR. On the other hand, private sector players have been doing this for years. Because of their knowledge and understanding of what communications can do for their bottom lines, they tend to be more demanding.

What do private and public sector players need to know before enlisting the services of a communications firm?

They will need to have a clear brief on what their entities need, their objectives, and budgets for a campaign. You might have brilliant ideas, but they would amount to nothing if a campaign stalls midway over budgetary constraints. There is also need to give an agency the freedom to implement its creative and communications strategies. A growing challenge for agencies, for example, has been that anybody with a Facebook page or Twitter handle considers themselves experts in social media. The truth is that it requires the right strategy and messaging to successfully integrate social media into an overall campaign, and it takes a lot of work and expertise to have it bring a return on investment for a client.

Why, in your opinion, are Kenyan agencies losing large accounts to South Africa or the UK, and what can PR managers do to stem this trend?

It could be due to a number of factors, including the perception that we do not have capacity in Kenya, which is not the case. There have been major high-budget creative campaigns whose strategies have been developed and executed by Kenyan agencies. While I am not faulting foreign agencies, with all due respect, they do not have the insights on the needs of Kenyan people that a local agency would have. Even if they send people over to study the market, they miss the authenticity of living with and among Kenyans that produces nuances that have informed some of the biggest and most memorable campaigns from local firms in the recent past.

What would you say are some of the trends we need to focus on going forward in Kenya’s advertising industry?

Digital advertising is increasingly accounting for the larger portion of the advertising portfolio for Kenyan agencies and advertisers. Content marketing and conversion rate optimisation were the top two digital marketing priorities for 2013-14, followed closely by social medial engagement. Data and analytics are also top priorities for marketers. This is driven by the search for ways to understand customers, how they are consuming content, and how to monetise this consumption through paywalls and advertising. ‘Big data’ is the biggest game-changing opportunity for marketing and sales, and companies that know how to use big data have outperformed in their respective markets and created competitive advantages. Mobile will also remain key in interacting with the African consumer — close to 70 per cent of African consumers are comfortable with mobile advertising, and spending in this sector is expected to be close to 25 per cent of Internet advertising by 2017 in Kenya.
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http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/business/article/2000178724/interview-with-joanna-gow-speaks-on-growth-of-marketing-and-public-relations-industry?pageNo=2

Where Elegant Fashion meets Exceptional Professionalism

Young, Stylish & Professional. PMS personnel looking exceptionally elegant on the ‘Office Style’ section of COUTURE MAGAZINE July Issue.

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Featured:
John Gikanga (Creative Director)
Victor Henry (Creative Designer)
Patricial Warui (Account Executive)
Nicholas Kyalo (Head of Department)
Jane Gaty (Business Development)
Victoria Mutua (Public Relations)
Wanjiku Wachirah (Head of Outsourced Management)
Schola Mutete (Project Manager)