In celebration of Alta’s 25th anniversary, Alta tutors around the country were asked to write about the impact the organisation has had on their lives.
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A foundation built on flexibility and fun
How can I grow US$7—about 18,000 Ugandan shillings—into a big business? I need to start with a tiny stall beside a road or with a homemade cart.
Atwijukire Absolom, Uganda
When you’re starting up a new business, it can be easy to get carried away as you dream and plan; and with good reason, since you’re embarking on a thrilling journey. Atwijukire, if you’re like most entrepreneurs, at the moment your idea became clear, you got a surge of adrenaline, and since then your every waking minute has been devoted to getting your plan in motion.
The question is, can you do it?
A US$7 business won’t turn into multimillion dollar enterprise overnight. There’s a lot of work to be done, and during that long journey, qualities like determination and gumption will be just as vital as enthusiasm and optimism. Having an end goal in mind is a great thing; now you have to decide on the smaller, more achievable steps that help you work toward it, and then carry them out.
That work should begin long before you make your first sale. You need to understand who your customers are and what they want. If you’re looking to set up a stall to sell goods, the market research may be as straightforward as asking people in your community what they’d like to buy but are having trouble finding in local shops and stalls.
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