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Sibusiso T's story on... growing into entrepreneurship

Sibusiso’s entrepreneurial calling started emerging during his student years. An environmental science student witnessing the onset of South Africa’s energy crisis, he was one of those people who was drawn to looking for solutions. His first solution was energy storage, as at that time the topic of renewable energy was taking off, his entrepreneurial spark was lit.

Sibusiso quickly realised that sketching an idea was never going to be enough to attract the resources needed and a prototype was the next essential step in the journey. This need propelled him to learn about computer aided design, exposing him to a skill he was unaware he had and a passion waiting to be explored.

Pressing ahead with the typical twists and turns in the entrepreneurial journey, today Sibuiso is an entrepreneur in mobile gaming and app development. We are reminded that we cannot always be sure where our journey will lead, but that embracing the learning along the way will help direct our next milestone.

“I developed into this current entrepreneurial role. It took me some time and it wasn't a straightforward process, it wasn't something that I learned, it was something that came out of nowhere. This is where I ended up.”

After publishing his very first prototype it was followed by two invites by top publishers to publish his games. Sibusiso knew this was something he should look at exploring further. As fate would have it, 2020 arrived and lockdown forced him to take a deep look at the direction he would be taking as an entrepreneur. 14 prototypes later, all published, Sibusiso shares with us even more problems he has uncovered in the market that require solving. True to the definition of an entrepreneur, he cannot help but explore ways to pioneer solutions to a market that is challenged, especially in Africa. Sisbusiso’s innovative nature truly comes to the fore - finding solutions to challenges people face.

Innovative, consistent, persistent, and a ‘never give up’ attitude, equips Sibusiso with the qualities needed as an entrepreneur. He explains how often people are not used to adopting new ideas which is difficult for the entrepreneur who by one’s very nature is constantly coming up with new ideas.

“People are often only used to using what they know and are resistant to changing unless you can thoroughly convince them to change for the better. It can be deeply demotivating when people cannot see what we are trying to achieve but innovating is not about achieving success the first time, innovation is about attempting time and time again, reiterating, till you reach that success.”

Sibusiso advises us to bring people INTO our process as a way to deal with resistance to change or adoption. This is when they become invested and interested in the outcome. He embraces this in how he does business. On a personal level too, Sibusiso finds inspiration in people, learning from those in his industry, from both their mistakes and successes. In the same vein, his vision is to bring impact to his industry, to bring change and to inspire, holding himself accountable to achieving that in the next five years. He believes the secret to us all achieving our entrepreneurial vision lies in shifting our focus from our fears to our dreams.

Sibusiso is honest about the good and bad of being a business owner, the ‘ugly’ work like accounts and admin and the ‘fun’ work meaning his mobile game development and gaming projects. He highlights that as an entrepreneur you at least have the choice of when you want to work on the good or the bad things.

We are impressed by how Sibusiso never set out to become an entrepreneur, never dictated the domain he would be entering into, how a newfound passion and entrepreneurship found HIM. How he genuinely pursued a route from a growing passion where all forces somehow came together because it was just meant to be. This also shows us that we as entrepreneurs cannot always dictate and control everything. That being open to solving the challenges we see around us, and finding joy in that, tends to open the gates along the journey. His parting advice:

“Start as early as possible. It's not about the resources you have today. It doesn't have to be at full scale immediately. Start with the need you have recognised that requires solving. Investigate and find more information on what you want to do. Then commit yourself to do it. Understand that entrepreneurship comes in these stages. Start again if it doesn't work out.”

“Solving niche challenges Founders face”.

Illustrator: Lisa Williams (Instagram: @artist_llw)


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