Business commentary colin proudfoot

2016-08-18 06:00
Colin Proudfoot is a business turnaround specialist. As a service to the local community he provides free business advice to emerging entrepreneurs.

Colin Proudfoot is a business turnaround specialist. As a service to the local community he provides free business advice to emerging entrepreneurs.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

IN the past few weeks I have met a number of aspiring young entrepreneurs. There are those who have spotted a gap in the market and wish to start a business.
Others have heard of an existing business for sale and are investigating the possibility of making an investment. As a business advisor should do, I challenge their thinking, question their motivation and test their grasp of the market they are looking into. What I find refreshing is their keenness to engage, their willingness to learn and the absolute delight they display in being part of creating a plan and a strategy for the next step. Associating with these young people gives me even more reason to believe that the socio economic challenges we face can be overcome.

As if to reinforce my belief, I recently received a call from a local educational institution wanting to find out more about the work we do with emerging entrepreneurs. We set up a meeting at which the representative from the institution outlined their plans to introduce practical trade training from grade nine level for students who are more technically inclined.
This is an established independent educational institution with a very good matric pass rate history so I was interested to find out the reason for wanting to introduce trade skills based education that will require substantial investment in new facilities and new teaching resources. Their response was along the lines that the purpose of effective education is to equip pupil to make a life for themselves by being skilled and employable. We live in a region that employs plumbers, electricians, cabinet makers, bricklayers and other skilled artisans so why punch out too many of what we don’t need and not enough of what we do need? It takes just one institution like this to have a vision that will change lives.

The final part in this week’s “feel good trilogy” stems from doing research into supplier development programmes offered by major retail groups.
If we want to address high unemployment in this region the retail sector has to support locally made products. From my initial investigation it appears that they go beyond expectations. A full spectrum of support is offered including finance, mentoring and skills development. Their websites are full of success stories reinforcing my belief that there is always a way to tackle the challenges that face our region, provided the major role players put their muscle behind these initiatives.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.