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Put Side Hustle to Test Before Quitting Your Job, Employees Advised :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Put Side Hustle to Test Before Quitting Your Job, Employees Advised

This advice comes when it is trendy for employees to have side hustles, making Uganda one of the most entrepreneurial countries. However, many lack a step-by-step approach to transitioning from job to business, hence courting a big risk.
21 May 2024 16:23
20240521_134057

Audio 2

People who primarily earn their living from employment have been advised not to be excited about their alternative economic initiatives (side hustles) before they decide to quit their jobs.

This advice was given by Denis Ngabirano, the proprietor of Sumz Food Company, a renowned snacks processing company. The former teacher says it took him four years to fully quit his job after testing the side hustle's capacity to supporting him without a job.

This advice comes at a time when it is trendy for employees to have side hustles, making Uganda one of the most entrepreneurial countries. However, many lack a step-by-step approach of transitioning from job to business, hence not living up to their expectations.

According to Ngabirano, his business started with UGX 43,000 (USD 11) and grew big. After a self-evaluation check, he realized he couldn’t deliver well in the classroom because the business demanded a lot of his involvement. He adds that he tested the business's capacity to support his livelihood by not picking his salary for six months. When it passed this test, he found ways of quitting in a systematic way.

//Cue in; “Business started in…

Cue out; … doubled the sales."//

He says it is okay running a side hustle alongside a formal job as it is the formal job that supports the side hustle. "If it's proven that you can do without the job, that's when you choose to resign, but don’t throw away your job because you're excited by business; you still need your job if you are to maintain your side hustle; let it pass the test.”

This advice was part of Ngabirano’s message to up to 200 students from 100 schools across the country, together with 100 teachers, one from each participating school, who were being equipped with entrepreneurship skills under the 9th edition of the Stanbic Bank Schools Championship boot camp.

He also encouraged the participants to always be observant and differentiate business from relationships of family and friends.“One of the biggest killers of startups is the failure to separate relationships from business," he explained. "For example I work with my wife, but I am not her husband at work; I am the CEO, and I take executive decisions without fear or favor. We are also still salary earners, employed by our company, after 14 years.”

Diana Ondoga, the manager for corporate-social investment of Stanbic Bank Uganda, said the championship is about helping young people appreciate their value, understanding their role in the development of the country, as well as helping extract that which is within them so that they can use it as entrepreneurs, as innovators, or as employees.

She added that the boot camp skills them with what is tangibly required skills in the particular space they could have chosen to participate in. Since it is in the form of a competition, the four best/winning ideas are awarded seed capital of up to UGX 500,000 each to help these learners incubate these ideas.

//Cue in; “What we do …

Cue out; … a self starter.”//

According to Ondoga, the competition started 150 schools’ ideas submissions, from which the best 100 were shortlisted for the boot camp, adding that the climax will be identifying  of the best four ideas from each of the four regions of the country, and these are the ones that will be financed. “If we are to look at direct and indirect, I would say we are touching almost 500,000 lives per year, and since we are running a series, many more lives will be touched,” she adds.

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